An eager crowd are hustled into the Q Theatre Loft, gawking at the lovely set as they take their seats. Oak barrels adorned with glasses and bottles of wine are scattered about the stage, where vines crawl up wooden latticework at the back. The stage lights are a warm pink amongst strings upon strings of glowing fairy lights, bringing a buttery glow to the stage that doesn’t just come from the whole block of butter Laura Daniel wedges into her overlarge wine glass.
Two Hearts is the musical-comedy collaboration between comedian couple Laura Daniel and Joseph Moore. I wasn’t sure exactly what to expect, but had heard good things about their live performances. Admittedly, I found the beginning difficult to get into. This might be because their ‘Winery Tour’ relied on a lot of millennial vs. boomer humour, and I come from that younger generation that everyone “forgets” about between millennial and Gen Z. I understood these early jokes, I knew how they were meant to be funny, but they just didn’t land for me. I had also hoped that the ‘Winery Tour’ set up wasn’t solely to make those kind of white, upper middle class jokes about alcoholism that are so common in certain circles.
Luckily they moved on to their musical performances – which is where they truly shine. Impressive and very funny, they run through a whole gamut of playful material – from a country love song about factory farming to a Janelle Monae-like riff on ‘Cybersex’.
The return of the hilarious ‘Slutty Ghost’ track plays well, first with new soulful vocals from Daniel before heading right back to hip-hop, bringing along strobe-lights and thrusting back up dancers. Daniel and Moore really work the crowd, with the energy they would truly need to hold an arena. As a ‘Winery Tour’ should only really be affordable to actual adults, the duo close with an upbeat quasi Shakira bop dedicated to, and skewering, baby boomers – including a timely dig at the recent governmental backtrack on the Capital Gains Tax.
Laura Daniel is difficult to keep your eyes off of as a dead-eyed, manically outgoing pop-diva. So essentially, a pop diva. Moore is left to try keep this outrageous personality on-deck, but really wows in his solo rap moments.
The production value for this comedy set is insane, and the effort these two have put in to making such a high quality performance really pays off – with some of the best laughs coming from moments that could only come from such high levels of showmanship. I would have to note that, for all their technical wow factor, my favourite special effect would have to be their Stage Manager/“sommelier” squirting a fire extinguisher with gusto side of stage in lieu of a smoke cannon.
The songs are the best parts of the show. The crowd consistently howls with laughter – where there are moments for everyone to enjoy. It is a glitzy, high energy musical extravaganza. Two Hearts is most entertaining when it goes off the rails – both as the duo’s jokes push the limits and when their comedic interludes/stage personas devolve into absurdity.
What: The Winery Tour
Who: Two Hearts
When: 10PM, 7-11 May
Where: Q Theatre, Loft
Review by Grace Hood-Edwards