Tobacco Factory theatre director Ali Robertson has assembled the usual eclectic mix of Christmas entertainment, closing off each day with this entertaining late, late magic show.
Peter Clifford is perhaps best known at the venue as a stalwart member of its acclaimed thespian company, Shakespeare at the Tobacco Factory. However, he is also building a reputation on the magic front, and is now in residence at the adjacent Brewery Theatre for the third festive season running.
Magic on television presents special challenges, of course, but then so does appearing in a small studio theatre with your audience right on top of you. Clifford turns this to his advantage by calling on plenty of help from those out front, in an unusual gig built around the Big Bang at the beginning of time and, as the title of the show suggests, working his legerdemain around the essential elements for life that have developed since then.
I particularly liked the table of elements set to the music of Tom Lehrer, but with the press performance taking place on December 20, the night before, according to the ancient Mayan Calendar, the world is due not to begin but to end, who knows if anyone will ever read this review anyway.