Fringe favourite Dave Callan has for the last four years been bringing dance based comedy to huge crowds to Festivals all over the world. Initially it was the incongruous sight of a large bearded Irish man recreating Beyonce‘s Single Ladies video that was causing people to lose control of themselves but that lead to more dancing, then more. Each show got a more complicated name.
His first dance based show was ‘A Little Less Conversation’, followed by ‘A Little More Less Conversation‘, ‘Even More Less Conversation’, and last years ‘I Promised Craig I Would Do Something’. That show was a reference to Craig Egan who runs the Adelaide Comedy circuit out of The Rhino Room, were Dave has been doing shows for years.
This year the show is called Every Video Clip Ever (* some footage missing) and crams a hell of a lot of routines into a one hour show. It is still a stand-up show, just with more twerking, costume changes and choreography than you normally get from a guy telling jokes.
Your last few Fringe shows have been dance based – aren’t you tired?
No! I love it. Ok maybe the first couple are exhausting but you get energised by it after that and get more vitality. Also if I didn’t do this I’d have to separate cardio and performing. I like to do both together.
This year you show promises to recreate “every video clip ever” what makes a truly memorable pop music video?
I think it needs great choreography or an angle. Beyonce’s Single Ladies has the former and I think examples of the latter are Aha‘s Take on Me or Smack my Bitch Up (Prodigy)/ You Should Consider Having Sex with a Bearded Man (by Adelaide’s own The Beards) or any of Ok Go‘s work.
You’ve just released a clip of you doing the 90’s classic S Club Party, are they correct when they say that there is no party like an S Club Party? Not even if the Vengabus is coming to Spice Up Your Life?
I have been to a great many parties which were just like an S Club Party so that’s actually a lie. I have however been waiting for the Vengabus for ages.
You have done Beyonce’s Single Ladies dance all over the world and it always seems to kill. Was that always true even at some of the rougher gigs in Edinburgh (Late Night Live)?
Yes. I remember one Late and Live they just weren’t into it. They had endured a lot of stand up by that stage and mine wasn’t fire that night. So I was losing drunk uni students to their own conversations. Soon as I launched into the dance and the backing dancers came out the place was on its feet. It was a massive turnaround. Who knew a drunk Scottish audience wanted colour and movement at 3am. Late and Live holds another special memory for me. I did my twerkshop there one night and two guys with kilts got up (worn traditionally if you know what I mean) the last twerk is an upside down handstand tweak. Let’s just say I copped an eyeful that night and the audience erupted.
Is it true this is the last of your dance based shows and we might see a martial arts based comedy show from you next?
Yes that’s the plan. I wanted to take more time with the Martial Arts as the more I study the more depth I find it has. It’s infinitely deep actually and although I have progressed to black belt I want to master it some more. I have a lot of material already but the logistics of bodies and weapons flying around on stage is going to take some time and precision and planning.
Dave Callan has popped up on Rove Live, MICF Gala, GNW, Spicks and Specks, Chaser’s Media Circus, JJJ and can be currently seen on ABC’s Good Game. He’s a functioning Fruchocoholic.
Every Video Clip Ever is at The Rhino Room until March 12th 8:30pm. Tickets from Fringe-Tix.