BY Cheryl Till

In the chilly 7 degrees that cools the Factory Theatre’s outdoor bar, the pre-show atmosphere is light-hearted with an undercurrent of excited conversation as people mingle around heaters standing on the artificial lawn.

Towards one corner, Alice Tovey stands in a tan, knee-length coat and shining black liquid latex pants. Her signature red-heart ‘Tovey’ earrings swing and her sapphire lined eyes sparkle as she sips at her cup of ‘bitter man-tears’. By her side, Ned Dixon leans against the table, kitted out in a red velvet suit jacket which Tovey refers to as a “Victorian carpet”.

“I’m Alice. We’re about to go on,” Tovey says to Frida Deguise, another of this year’s comedians who has joined the table and introduced herself.

They exchange a few words before Tovey and Dixon make their way through the doors to the Factory Floor where they will be performing.

The stage is lit in glowing green, props lying in wait under a black drape. Up front, a keyboard and mic are at the ready atop a plush Persian carpet.

The lights dim as Dixon settles himself behind the keyboard, and the show starts with a bang – straight into a brilliantly composed piece laced with powerful vibrato and a dash of cynicism. Backed by Dixon’s deft hands on the keyboard, Tovey is a walking embodiment of a feminist Tumblr rant in musical satire form.

With unapologetic confidence, Tovey and Dixon hold a captive audience with an hour-long musical comedy filled with hand puppets, kazoos, commentary on politics, racism and the patriarchy, with a few Trump jokes thrown in for good measure. Not to forget a mention to Pauline Hanson a white feminist symbol proving to women everywhere that: “You too can be a bigoted arsehole.” [pause for laughter]

But while Tovey’s skill as a comedian and singer are undeniably key in the success of her show, the real draw here is her ability to encapsulate every conversation that needs to be had and bring real opinions into the public eye.

An extraordinarily friendly and down to earth pair, Tovey and Dixon bring to the table exactly the kind of blunt satire that everyone needs in their lives.

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