Ted Talks Crimes

BATS Theatre, The Stage, 1 Kent Tce, Wellington

02/05/2023 - 06/05/2023

Production Details

Written by Jeremy Hunt
Directed by Emma Katene

Dastardly Productions


On the outside, Ted had it all – money, power, and influence. As one of the top ranking gangsters for the most powerful crime family in New York City, he was untouchable. Invaluable to the mob, his slick, strong and persistent fingers could tickle protection money out of anyone. He was the golden boy of the Nonzerelli crime family. He was Ted the Tickler.

Until one day, it hit him like a fish to the back of the head. Was this really the mark he wanted to leave on this world? Was he going to spend the rest of his life tickling for The Mob? Or will he create his own legacy? Perhaps by taking down the most powerful crime family in New York City…

So begins a mile-a-minute tale of soul-searching, revenge and deadly bananas. Will Ted be able to tickle his way out of this one?

The award-winning Dastardly Productions brings this absurd and joyous comedy back to BATS Theatre. It’s The Godfather if The Godfather involved tickling. An epic crime caper for the ages!

On at BATS Theatre 2 – 6 May 2023 at 7:30pm
Book tickets here: https://bats.co.nz/whats-on/ted-talks-crimes/

Performed by Jeremy Hunt
Composition & Sound Design by Ben Kelly
Lighting and Set Designed by Kate Anderson
Dramaturgy by Ricky Dey
Publicity by Tyler Clarke

Comedy , Theatre , Solo ,

60 mins

Enthralling physicality and athleticism better than a TED talk any day

Review by Margaret Austin 03rd May 2023

This performance is a ticklish take on the talks that sit under the TED umbrella. What shelters there is often disappointingly banal, but we at BATS Stage are soon set up for a decided departure from banality.

We’re greeted by Ted, a self-confessed gangster, New York style. He’s dapper, elegantly dressed, and athletic. His job? To collect protection money, a nasty job he admits. On his latest one, a chance comment from his victim results in his becoming a conscience-stricken criminal, obsessed with creating a legacy.

With such an unlikely preface, we are somewhat prepared for the subsequent action. We meet fellow gangsters Slippery Jo, Corleone and Gonzo and we get to hear just what form Ted’s self-imposed task of penance is going to take. He is spurred on by a rumour heard in a milk bar (ever heard of a mobster hanging out in one?) and is on his way.

At this point, there is a flashback enlightening us on our man’s childhood in Sicily where an encounter with the Don is to prove decisive. Not for the first time, we find ourselves laughing involuntarily at something that’s not funny. Touches of black comedy are not out of place here. 

As well as maintaining the appropriate accent, Jeremy Hunt, writer (with dramaturg Ricky Dey) and performer, enthrals with his physicality and athleticism. Not only does he take on all the other characters – most notably that of a cop – but once he reaches his unlikely destination where the denouement is about to take place, his physical hijinks become ever more comical. The plot to create his so-called legacy by making amends for his crimes climaxes amid a marriage ceremony, gangsters in piles – and a piece of fruit.  

Everyone involved with this production is to be congratulated: the writer and performer (Hunt), as well as Director Emma Katene, Composition & Sound Designer (Ben Kelly), Lighting and Set Designed (Kate Anderson). It’s easy to see why this is already an award-winning production. Better than a TED talk any day.


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