It is very hard to write about a show like Dicky Dicky & Theatre 4.669’s Dicky Dicky Dream Factory. Less so, if you don’t mind spoiling vast swaths of what lies ahead of you should you be lucky enough to get yourself one of their limited seats.
Dicky Dicky Dream House is… an experience. In fact, you might say that the show is the experience, that it’s the being there, the interacting and the reacting. And, of course, the laughs. Bizarre and awkward as it may get at times, Ray Behsarah and David Brown are on point throughout this entire performance.
Dicky Dicky is by and large a comedy act, but it is also going to try and force you out of various comfort zones. As a member of the audience, you are going to have to be prepared for and okay with that, as this show relies heavily on audience participation.
You will be shouting; you will be the centre of attention; you will have your dreams built up and broken down by the people around you; you will be blindfolded and put into handcuffs.
That being said, they don’t force anyone to do anything they’re uncomfortable with, and they give you recommendations on what to do if the hood and handcuffs make you uncomfortable (This sequence could get intense for some people, though if you have someone in your group laughing their head off, perhaps not).
That being said, I almost wish they’d employed a few more benign environmental effects to took advantage of that sequence a bit more than they did. What they had was already delightfully cheesy, but a few minor additions could have brought it to an entirely new level.
Besharah and Brown are simply hilarious in this performance. And, as working in a dream factory might suggest, they take advantage of the unpredictability that lends. Their ability to improvise and stay in character in the face of audience reactions is frankly remarkable, and I don’t remember them ever stumbling over a response.
If that isn’t enough to prove their commitment to their roles, you should know that Besharah and Brown both endure some pretty “close shaves” in the line of duty for this performance.
And I would be remiss to not mention the set they clearly took pains to put together. Again, I don’t want to spoil things, but it was quaint and, I think you’ll agree with me, perfectly fitting for the idea of a “dream factory.”
Despite the high level of entertainment, it feels somewhat aimless. It does (more or less) stay rooted in its core concept, but the overall objective of the piece a bit elusive, owing back to how experiential this piece is.
It ends up less about the story they want to tell, and more about the unique experiences they want to cultivate with the audience. And it is unique.
But that’s just my opinion and I’d love to know what you thought? How was your Dream Factory experience? Join the discussion and leave a comment below.
Dicky Dicky Dream Factory runs as part of the Ottawa Fringe Festival through Saturday June 17th.