SeriousBucks – making a barista of a situation

Seriousbucks: can't we just say, small, medium and large?

A life in customer service is explored through the eyes of a barista in SeriousBucks, written by Caroyn Birch and performed by Kelly Hudson.

Hudson is an accomplished comedic force in Victoria, best known for her work with comedy juggernaut Atomic Vaudeville and her performance is very strong. While I’m not sure if she’s ever worked at a corporate coffeehouse, she conveys the material with a realism that convinces otherwise. While the funny script is uneven in spots, Hudson keeps it moving along and keeps the audience engaged.

Prerecorded voiceovers and multimedia are used to help with the storytelling. While it allows Hudson to interact with another stage device, I am left wondering if the production wouldn’t have been better served by just letting the performer handle all the characters herself. Hudson is given the opportunity a few times in SeriousBucks, portraying a homeless man and an immature manager and I think a better flow might have been created if the prerecorded material had simply been chucked and Birch had just let Hudson go with it.

This piece was just starting to feel a little long when it wrapped up. At 45 minutes, it might benefit from a bit of editing. The set was a nice addition; I’d like to know how they managed to get a professional coffee machine in there!

SeriousBucks is worth seeing - if only to see Kelly Hudson grace the stage with another charismatic turn.

SeriousBucks; written by Carolyn Birch and performed by Kelly hudson. Part of the 2008 Victoria Fringe Festival. Remaining shows at Venue 5 (Victoria Event Centre) on the following dates: Mon 25 7:45 • Wed 27 6:00 • Sat 30 7:45. Want more info or a job application, settle in here.

By Mike Vardy