Within the first few minutes of claiming to have nothing left to sing about, Gabbi Bolt has already brought up gender, race, privilege, anxiety and a whole range of other issues and topics. But yet, she still feels like an odd sock, and with her new comedy show Odd Sock, she describes the various ways in which this manifests through music, singing and storytelling.
Bolt covers a number of relatable topics, including the relationship and power dynamics between a dog and its owner, the perils of lusting after a celebrity obsession (and in the case of Bolt's pick, you really can't blame her), and the joys of working retail (spoiler alert, there aren't any). Each song consists of sharp, witty observations of not only the world around her but also about Bolt's own life.
With some bright coloured nail polish and eye shadow, flower earrings and a floral top (and a pair of odd socks), Bolt's lively personality clearly comes through even while spending most of her time sitting behind her keyboard. She makes smart use of a TV screen to visually stimulate, and her light audience interactions helps diversify the structure of the show.
Despite her singing about and expressing her anxiety, Bolt has full command of the stage and it wouldn't surprise me if performing is one of those times where Bolt feels most confident and calm. She knows what she is doing, she knows how to engage with her audience, and she knows how to give the audience a good time. There are a few instances where she makes a pun or joke and then playfully rolls her eyes and concedes they are bad. While this could be a play on her anxiety, it would be more comical if she owned it and didn't pretend it wasn't working, because it does.
After the amazing success of last year's I Hope My Keyboard Doesn't Break, Odd Sock is a great return for Bolt to the Melbourne International Comedy Festival. It’s another winning combination of musical comedy and Bolt's attempt to unpack the things in life that cause her stress and concern, but which provide plenty of laughs for us.
Venue: The Butterfly Club, 5 Carson Place, Melbourne
Season: until 23 April | Tues - Sun 7pm
Duration: 60 minutes
Tickets: $37 Full | $33 Concession | $30 Tightarse Tuesday
Bookings: The Butterfly Club and Melbourne International Comedy Festival