Meandering down Mollison St deceives one into thinking they have left Brisbane and perhaps sauntered into a side-road of Byron Bay. With its luscious greenery coated with flickering Christmas lights, lining an assortment of groovy restaurants, cafes and exotic Colombian accordionists. This place was practically oozing with personality. I found Boundary St Markets to be no different, there was something poetic about how this place that consisted entirely of shipping containers, barbed wire fences and iron beams didn’t feel depressing. It’s almost like someone had breathed life into all of these bleak elements of industry, and I guess the bright orange paint job didn’t hurt. Making it a perfect venue for Daniel Cabrera’s enthralling one man performance Who is Dani Cabs?.
I can honestly say that tonight was the first time in my life that seeing a scantily dressed, smiling, Uruguayan man has evoked within me feelings of happiness. The simplistic set design and lack of 4th wall created this relationship between artist and spectator that bordered on friendship, it felt like we had been transported into his living room. Where Dani’s immaculate storytelling ability engages you from the first ‘Ola’ and doesn’t let you go until you’ve left your seat, and even then I struggled to think of anything else but what I had just beheld. What I found most engaging about this coming of age narrative was how truthful it was, the emotions presented were organic and the confidence in which he explained his life was authentic, heartfelt and touching.
The verb I would use to describe Dani is playful, whether it be in his bawdy costume choices, or his hilarious quips to unsuspecting audience members or his bouts of high energy, exuberant physicality. This Lecoq influenced clown works exceedingly well off of the audience, the integration of the slideshow was innovative and effective in its ability to seamlessly link together all aspects of the story. At its core this tale is about a man and his role models, it delves into friendships, familial bonds and a struggle with life’s expectations. If you can’t tell by now I’m going to explicitly say it, I loved this piece. I felt like this was the personification of Daniel Carbrera and I was moved by it.
Dearest reader I implore you to see this show, this performer bares his all both internally and externally. I mean it practically pays for itself in the education you receive, whether it be on Spanish phrases, Uruguayan Politics, Australian Politics, or football, it is money well spent. If that doesn’t convince you then you can justify this outing as a health benefit, they say that laughter boosts the immune system and I can guarantee you that you will be laughing all night long.
This review is based on the reviewer’s experience of the opening night performance on May 14.