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Saturday, November 29, 2008


Five inebriated characters meander through humorous comment and send-up! (Review by Caroline Smart)

A Dingaling Production conceived by Yugan Naidoo and directed by Kumseela Naidoo, Chops, Choons and Span of Dops is an evening of comedy entertainment combining skit and stand-up routines.

The setting is an outdoor braai area on a camping site in Park Rynie where five fairly inebriated characters have taken time-out from the “vrous”. Senzo Mthethwa, Koobeshan Naidoo, Henry Ramkissoon, Pranesh Maharaj and Ravi are putting in some heavy drinking while partaking of the odd nibble from the braai. The point of the whole bunfight is to give the endearing “lightie” (Pranesh) a bachelor party at which he becomes the amiable receiving end for some amusing ribbing.

Despite the fact that show is quite lengthy, including an interval, the laughs come thick and fast with the most enthusiastic response coming from Koobeshan’s take on marital relationships – particularly those mysterious shopping bags that come home and disappear into a secluded portion of the wife’s cupboard only to reappear much later in the form of a new outfit, explaining the R2,000 dent in the bank account!

The cast is tightly knit and work well together under Kumseela Naidoo’s direction. They are all versatile so we get a few songs and even a dance number!

Senzo Mthethwa is completely at home with Indian music so this offers a fascinating cross-cultural aspect. Henry Ramkissoon’s infectious laugh punctuates his volatile dialogue while Ravi is the quietest – and probably sanest – character of the bunch.

I believe that the production could do with some pruning – particularly in the stand-up sequences - as I always believe that “less is more”. We have been introduced to the scenario of the campsite situation and, while music and song is accepted as a logical departure, long slabs of stand-up takes us away from the direction in which we’ve been steered. However, as I said, the audience remained supportive to the end.

I would like to see Dingalings explore the capacity of this group further. While Chops, Choons and Span of Dops has the potential to continue to attract audiences for a long time – use it as a pension fund, guys! – there’s some strong talent in this production and it looks as if they have the necessary energy to be adventurous.

There are two more performances at Supernova at Suncoast tomorrow (November 29) at 17h00 and 21h00. Tickets at the box-office at NuMetro Cinecentre at Suncoast on 031 328 3349/38. For more information call Kay on 083 793 9969. – Caroline Smart

The Dingalings’ next production “Laugh for Life” takes place on December 3 and 4 at the Sibaya Casino and at the Golden Horse Casino in Pietermaritzburg on December 14 and 15. All performances at 20h00 presented in aid of the United National World Food Programme Hunger Relief – SA. See separate article)