My First...

Comedy (sketch show)

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  • Fringe Player - Fringe Online
  • Watch onDemand (available from 6 August)
  • 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Suitability: 14+ (Guideline)
  • Country: Iceland
  • Group: Gaflaraleikhusid Theatre
  • Warnings and additional info: Scenes of a sexual nature, Strobe lighting
  • Babes in arms policy: Babies are not allowed in the venue
  • Policy applies to: Children under 2 years
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An English adaptation of an award-winning comedy from Iceland that looks at all the firsts: first class, first place, first rate, and even love at first sight. Humanity is obsessed with firsts. To be the first man on the moon or the first person up Mount Everest; these achievements immortalised those that succeeded at these mammoth endeavors. We constantly compare our own personal firsts to these giants, our first love, first date, first kiss! But where these great heroes succeeded, many more buggered it up... We are survivors of our flailing, frantic firsts and these are our stories!

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  • Wheelchair access type: Not fully wheelchair accessible

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Nic Lawton (co-founder of Expial Atrocious theatre company) 139 days ago

"We're all living life for the very first time."

I. Loved. This. Show. It was fun, awkward, cringey, weird, hilarious and incredibly awkward. Straight out of the gate, the whole cast start up the show with a buzzing energy that is ridiculously infectious. Their singing, comical delivery and physicality was just brilliant. I loved how they basically looked like a group of kids show presenters, same energy, same beaming smiles, same audience acknowledgement. I already can't stop replaying moments in my head and laughing at them! That's a sign of a great script, a great cast and great direction.
One of the big stand-out things for me was the relatability of this show. I felt the second-hand embarrassment for everyone onstage talking about their awkward antics with love and s**, and I also felt embarrassed for my 15-18 year old self for understanding most of what they were talking about. The Snapchat scene? One of the funniest things I've seen at the Fringe this year! We all know about the peer pressure as a Year 8 of kissing someone at the disco or the prom or whatever, but leaving time between opening Snapchats is something I'm all too familiar with.
I'm pretty sure we all had that one 'friend' or 'girl at school' who would pretend to know everything about love and how to date online, but it would always be terrible advice and have next to know logic or scientific fact behind it. Can someone please explain how you know to leave 6 minutes between opening a guy's Snap so I don't look desperate? I love that this show highlighted these universal 'unspoken rules' that we all somehow knew about or picked up from someone else. I loved hearing it actually being discussed by other people so I know I'm not going insane! It also made me realise how ridiculous it all is looking back at it...
A lot of the visuals and physical language in this show were brilliant. They were fun, hilarious and depicted the human condition of being 'painfully awkward' so so well. The scenes surrounding symptoms of being in love were outrageously funny, the comedic timings from the whole cast were perfect, and I bet the vibe in front of that live audience was immaculate. It was pure joy and hilarity and all TOO real. (And I too jump around to Bangarang when I have a crush on someone.)
One of the highlights of this show had to be the date in the cinema. Can I talk about this for a second? Thanks. It was genius. The use of the shadowing technique and having other cast members voice the inner monologues of the actors having the 'date' was beautifully constructed, was very aesthetic to look at, and it had me in stitches. I just can't get over the exaggerated accuracy behind every awkward interaction. Yes, everyone's first date is different, but I'm pretty sure we've all felt nervous, wondered at least twelve times if we smell, and locked eyes for a little too long because you're eager to show that you're listening.
Basically, 'My First...' is my a big part of my sense of humour in a show. The slick transitions, the choreography, the harmonies (erm, hello? Yes please!), the genius interactions between actors and technology, the chaos. It was everything.
I had a feeling that some of this show was inspired by Bo Burnham, because of the musical humour, and I think my suspicions were confirmed during THAT scene when Charlie (Charlie Nobel) was left alone on stage... Even though it was an almost carbon copy of the original sketch, it didn't make it any less hilarious. It also felt a bit like Starkid's digital original musical 'Me and My D*ck'. A lot of crude humour, s** jokes and men dressed as genitals. Incredible.
The whole show rounded off nicely with an almost Breakfast Club-esque moment with the whole cast sat down chatting to each other. It verged on the boarder of being autobiographical performance, though I am still unsure what is true of the actors and what was written for their different characters. I really enjoyed the sit-down moment where the group talked about expectations, admitting your insecurities, asking your partner what they like/want, how we've grown up to believe what s** should and shouldn't look like, and that we should normalise talking about s**ual health and reproductive health. 1 in 10 men suffer from phimosis, 5-17% of women suffer from vaginismus. These are things we should talk about and be comfortable talking to our partners about. From birth control, to surgeries, to pills, to personal space and boundaries. I love that this show could joke about itself, and not be too serious, but then bring it all back full circle to talk about real things affecting more people than we think.
I love that there was a lesson at the end of it rather than it just being another awkward comedy about love performed by a group of very good-looking young people.
It also touched on telling yourself that it's okay to distance yourself from negative people. If things become difficult, allow yourself the chance to move away and not put the pressure on yourself to stay.
'My First...' is a very honest show at the heart of it, not holding back from the important topics we should be normalising in every day conversations and delving into the world of online relationships.
I thought this show was a triumph, and one that I would love to see live. It had be in stitches one moment, and then made me reflect on my own past relationships and feel very awkward about past endeavours. The energy and charisma behind this show is unparalleled to anything else I've seen at the Fringe this year, and it's definitely up there in my top 10. Great work everyone!

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