Richard Todd: We Need the Eggs

 

It’s an impressive feat to place yourself in front of a massive room of strangers and put forward a very open display of yourself. It’s likely even harder to do the exact same thing in front of a smaller, much more intimate, audience. Richard Todd’s clear discomfort when placed in this obviously awkward situation is simultaneously one of his biggest drawbacks and his most endearing qualities. But this awkwardness and somewhat clumsy delivery does a massive disservice to the tightly constructed and unique material it accidentally obfuscates.

In ‘We Need the Eggs’ Todd examines his own obsessiveness and odd behaviours, telling stories with a specific and strange sort of surrealism that can only be drawn from reality. Perhaps the most interesting part of the stories Richard tells is that you find yourself completely understanding his convoluted logic, seeing acts like hiding prawn cocktail crisps in you and your partner’s bed as both normal and sensible.

These threads of believably flawed logic likely come from the fact that Todd isn’t putting on much of an act. It can become almost disconcertingly difficult to determine where Richard the character ends and Richard the person begins, with his descriptions of himself in his stories sounding like the same quirky, odd and warm person performing on the stage. While this is mostly charming, the few more serious moments of the show have a slightly uncomfortable realness to them, that is albeit a commendable devotion to putting yourself into your work.

If you can look past Todd’s anxious stage presence and flustered delivery you’ll find an act rife with potential and personality and will likely be drawn into his bizarre, albeit slightly sad, world.

★★★

Louis Boyd-Madsen

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