Originally from England’s North East, Nicky Wilkinson moved to Australia (“for love”, awwww!) in late 2019 “Just in time for COVID.” Whilst unable to tour, she’s had a chance to note Australian quirks and do some thinking. Wilkinson is keen to share these insights in From Britain With Love.
There’s a little light, a little dark, and sometimes a blend of these in Wilkinson’s set. For example, her trip to the South Australian outback town of Iron Knob found an especially laconic form of Aussie casual racism, setting her the dilemma of whether she should say anything.
Wilkinson, having escaped her “shithole” hometown of Hull, also described difficulties living in Rockhampton with her Aussie bogan partner, including disdain from his daughter. Also shared, were frustrations at when a youthful game of “spin the bottle” didn’t deliver the reward Wilkinson had hoped for. She seems to skim the surface of some topics, and digging deeper might provide more payoff.
Highlights of the set include bits on body image and thigh gaps (which those “Step One” underwear ads show is not just an issue for women anymore!), and her treatment for a blood clot with a surprising resolution.
Wilkinson was assured in chatting to a smallish, somewhat shy audience, and we could expect her to get more from crowd-work in future performances. Although the set is mostly discrete sections, there were some call-backs.
Wilkinson is one half of physical comedy act The Kagools, who first visited MICF in 2016. The pair has delivered wonderfully silly shows, including Dressed for the British Summer and Kula. What an annoyance it must be to have your successful act disrupted by travel bans. However, rather than wait around, Wilkinson has bravely chosen to explore new comedic avenues.
From Britain With Love is a new show which will probably get stronger as Wilkinson is able to test and tune the material. She’s an engaging performer, and this 6.00pm offering has mostly PG content. The show is in a cute room at the Carlton Club, which has suitably-timed drink specials on various days. The pairing will provide a good start to a MICF evening.
Nicky Wilkinson: From Britain With Love
The Carlton Club (Level 1), 193 Bourke Street, Melbourne
Performance: Friday 9 April 2021 – 6.00pm
Season continues to 17 April 2021
For more information, visit: www.nicolawilkinson.com for details.
Image: Nicky Wilkinson – photo by Claire Ford
Review: Jason Whyte