Deep in the guts of Banshee Labyrinth at is an absolute gem of a show that packed out the room and delighted the late-night audience.
Amelia Hamilton (Musical Comedy Awards finalist, 2023) and multi-instrumentalist Tawny Owl (Comedy YouTube Series, over 30 million views) are performing a split-bill hour of musical comedy mixed with stand-up. It was both bizarre and delightful in equal measure.
The show is advertised as a split bill, but it’s not a clear-cut 50/50 split, with both musicians interacting and performing in duet as well as having their own dedicated slots. It kept things lively, ensuring the audience didn’t ever get fully comfortable with the tempo of the show, and allowed the personalities of Amelia and Tawny Owl to really shine through.
Did every joke land? No. Was every rap a potential top 10? Unlikely. There were even technical hitches and significant noise bleed from the pub. And I'll tell you what - absolutely none of it mattered. This is definitely a show that is more than the sum of its parts. The audience – crammed shoulder to shoulder – were having a great time, as were the performers.
This is, to me, exactly what the fringe should be about. Shows with a weird and alternative undercurrent, performed late at night in grungy venues, to an audience eager to be entertained – and not leaving disappointed. Nocturnal Animals are pure, unadulterated fun. It's so clear that Amelia Hamilton and Tawny Owl enjoy what they do, and that infectious energy radiates out to the crowd. If they work to get the rest of their material to the same high level as their best bits, they may need a health warning on their show… “Warning: this show risks leaving audiences with split sides and shortness of breath.”