X-Press Magazine Review

BUTT DONUT gets 8.5/10
A very human mess

Written by Jo Campbell

Butt Donut @ Centre for Stories (for Fringe)
Friday, February 16, 2018

Sometimes, life can be a veritable pain in the butt: something Melbourne comedian Annie Louey knows all too well.

With her debut stand-up show, Butt Donut, Louey turns the deflating griefs and pains of life into something uplifting, just like the inflatable donut featured in her promo shots.

Opening night of the Perth leg of her 2018 tour put her in good stead for her remaining calendar of performances. A Chinese-Australian, she touches on issues to do with family, racism, and fitting in; but it’s the pain of being injured and the genuinely sad event of her father’s stroke, subsequent death and funeral that form the core themes of the show.

When she was 16, Louey underwent a near-death experience resulting in hospitalisation for two weeks. Although this sort of trauma would not normally present itself as something to enjoy a hearty round of laughing to, she employs some exquisitely punchy story-telling to make the audience laugh about it, and other life-changing personal events in her short 24 years of life to date.

At times, she comes across as a disaffected youth, frustrated with relationships, but always wins you around with her openness. She exhibits some extremely hilarious physical theatrical comedy and, no matter how dark the subject matter, she always turns the line of thought into something fun – just like having an upbeat chat with a bestie about the challenges of life.

Although she’s definitely no rainbow-chaser, finding the silver lining is key to Louey. Her own personal development through suffering is evident throughout the show, which she eloquently wraps up with some positive, inspiring realisations.

With razor-sharp wit and an entirely well-written script, Louey performs well above the standard set by most stand-ups of her age. She’s also an ambassador for the KIDS Foundation charity that assists children and adults living with burns and other serious injuries with part ticket sales to be donated to the cause.