Three-time international poetry-slam champion Buddy Wakefield puts it squarely in the spoken-word pocket with a chaser of philosophical musings in this intriguing show.
From Kingston, Wash., Wakefield’s show is equal parts poetry, storytelling and standup comedy. He deconstructs religion, sports, passion and politics with an energetic delivery style that makes the 60 minutes fly by.
Sometimes his discourses unravel into mere rants and, visibly nervous during his first fringe foray, several of his jokes fall flat. Crowds usually love topical humour, while Toronto references don’t always work in this ’hood. But when he revs up to deliver his rapid-fire poems, scarcely pausing to catch his own breath, all is quickly forgiven.
As a bonus, the crowd was also treated to Wakefield’s ad-libbed reaction to thunder booming precisely during his references to God. You couldn’t have scripted better sound effects — or for a more skilful bard to roll with the thunder, er, punches.
— Holly Harris