ON THE BALL: Husband and wife team Lisa Bobbert and Aaron McIlroy are hilarious in the gym sketch.

The Seven Deadly Sins
CAST: Lisa Bobbert and Aaron McIlroy
VENUE: Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre
RATING: *****


Individually, the multi-award-winning husband and wife team of Lisa Bobbert and Aaron McIlroy present an impressive sense of vigour, but put them together on a stage and they exude enough energy to run the Koeberg power plant. This is evident in their new show, The Seven Deadly Sins.

For those unaware of the fact, the seven deadly sins are lust, gluttony, greed, sloth, wrath, envy and pride.

They are described by Wikipedia as “a classification of vices (part of Christian ethics) that has been used since early Christian times to educate and instruct Christians concerning fallen humanity’s tendency to sin”.

However, don’t even begin to think this production is a religious, do-good homily. Far from it, it’s a bundle of wonderful nonsense from beginning to end as they work through the seven deadly sins. This is the kind of fun we have come to expect from Bobbert and McIlroy.

Under director Steven Stead’s stabilising influence, they present a hilarious evening’s entertainment in a show co-written by Susan Monteregge that is full of clever gags and delightful scenes.

The Seven Deadly Sins takes the form of a television programme, opening with a delightful send-up – choreography and all – of a pop song by two characters in the programme.

Hostess/presenter Yawana valiantly tries to interview fashion guru Yogwana, who looks like he’s been let loose from a Viking beauty salon.

The “programme” then follows with interviews, songs such as Hey, Sexy Lady, Work Bitch, Toxic and Get Lucky, with sketches joined by audiovisual links (they have to change costume some time).

There are too many hilarious scenes to mention, but my favourites were the one in the gym where two socialites throw bitchy jibes at each other, and another where a couple try to regain their equilibrium after a night out at a swingers’ party.

The Seven Deadly Sins showcases the amazing capacity of these two performers – their comedy skills, singing ability and versatility with accents.

Michael Broderick’s set is clear and untrammelled, the simple use of the word “seven” in letters across the stage on platforms, a hanging screen to carry the audiovisual links and – my favourite – a backdrop of pipes. His lighting is excellent, turning the simple into the effective.

Choreography is by Janine Bennewith and Kevin Ellis, and Gareth Greaves designed the costumes. Creating the selection of props were Bryan Mark Hiles, who was responsible for the Toby character (Aaron in a huge fat suit), and Greg King.

Presented by MacBob Productions, The Seven Deadly Sins is at the Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre in Durban until March 9, with shows from Tuesdays to Saturdays at 7.30pm (Sundays at 6pm). Tickets are R140 through Computicket on 0861 915 8000 or online at www.computicket.com – artsmart.co.za