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The List Operators for Kids
Published on Saturday, 21 August 2010

5 stars

Pleasance Courtyard (venue website)
Until 29 Aug, 2:30pm (3:25pm)
Reviewed by Craig Thomson

I enjoyed The List Operators last year, as an afternoon show in the grown-up comedy section of the programme.  But their trademark silliness, love of wordplay and physical comedy, really shine through in this raucous show for kids.

I noted last year that much of the comedy of The List Operators was only peripherally list-related, and that holds even truer this year.  There's only one real list to speak of, while the bulk of the hour is a mix of madcap interactive routines.  Operators Matt and Richard's exaggerated style and appearance is instantly appealing to young tearaways, and the performers make it clear whose side they're on in the case of parents vs. children, with an early sketch involving a dad from the audience that descends into an enormous fart joke at his expense.

That's not to say there's nothing for parents to enjoy here – the irrepressible sense of fun filling the Cabaret Bar at Pleasance Courtyard will have adults laughing along too.  And like all good children's entertainment, there's some jokes thrown in for the older generation, which will hopefully, go right over the heads of the young ones.

Fart jokes aside, their laptop of amusing noises is well-utilised here, and one lucky youngster gets the chance to get on stage to cause mayhem with it.  The whole room is engaged at one point in a mad alien invasion, with cuddly home-made space creatures being chucked wildly both onto and from the stage. 

It's appropriate to mention here the fabulous range of activities now available at Pleasance Courtyard for kids (in the graveyard area next to Pleasance Beside, where historically a juicebar used to sit), complementing a strong range of programmed shows.  The List Operators for Kids must come close to the top of the pile at this venue, or indeed of all the children’s shows this year.

The youngsters have been engaged, interested and entertained at all the children’s events I have seen, but nothing comes close in terms of sheer, exuberant fun to The List Operators for Kids.  Children will have an absolute blast, and adults will be hard pushed to find a better show to take in themselves.

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These are archived reviews of shows from the Edinburgh Fringe 2010.  We keep our archives online as a courtesy to those we've featured, and for readers who'd like to research previous years' reviews.

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