MICF 2017 – The Ballad of Frank Allen (5 stars)

Review by Hasina Reza

When an aloof janitor and a love-stricken man with a beard cross paths in the most unusual way, we are introduced to a whole new world where a lack of privacy and friendship give ‘togetherness’ a brand new meaning.

Shane Adamczak and St John Cowcher share the stage as they capture the audience’s attention with a brilliant performance of combined physical theatre and musical story telling.

Located on the second floor of the quirky Butterfly Club, the small stage is just enough space for the duo to present their unlikely journey. Adamczak’s portrayal of the protagonist Frank, who becomes the unintentional subject of a scientific accident, is perfected so well that even spraying the audience with his janitor props is comical. The show ventures on to explore significant themes of love, friendship, heartbreak and self-fulfillment as the two men overcome their realistic weaknesses with each other’s support.

This brilliantly written show depicts a plot like no other, with crude humour, sailor-standard swearing and clever narration from both actors. The emotion Adamczak and Cowcher display on stage creates a successful and comfortable space of great energy, welcoming endless laughter and cheers from the audience. Nonetheless it is safe to say the lifelike representation of failure followed by a heavy night of drinking and a morning after of endless regrets, allows for audiences to raise their hand in shameless empathy. The pair shares the most of their impressive talents as they engage the wandering eyes in the room with the sounds of their instruments, catchy songs and improvisation.

From two aimless men with contrasting personalities, Frank and Al unite in overcoming the uncalled for scientific accident and befriend one another as the two new buddies embrace the memories of their uncommon 521 day journey together.


When: 3rd – 9th April 2017 | 7:00pm

Where: The Butterfly Club | MELBOURNE

Tickets: $25 – $32

Info: Dutration 55 minutes | Suitable 16+ | No wheelchair access

Link: https://www.comedyfestival.com.au/2017/shows/the-ballad-of-frank-allen#