Friday, March 4, 2016

Review: Collegiate Conspiracy Theory

Picking the right place for college can set the path for the rest of your life. In The BYU/Berkley Plot, Ben Abbott shares the story of the steps between his time at that Mormon college through his years at America's greatest public school. Abbott takes his audience on a whacky journey from discovering true love at BYU only to have his mission to Argentina, and his good guy persona, make him lose the girl. After deciding to leave the Mormon college, he finds himself at the exact photonegative school, UC Berkeley. But what links these two places? Ask his non-Mormon European buddy Sergio!
Abbott's monologue play is a fast-paced comedic extravaganza. Feel like you don't know much about either establishment? Abbott will give you an energetic two-minute refresher. Abbott is a sly comedian. He finds ways to keep you captivated through witty anecdotes, a corresponding slideshow, and Sergio. Sergio is a European guy Abbott met while attending BYU who has a grandiose theory about the rise of the Mormons via aliens and glowing orbs. What seems like a one-off story ends up being the link to Abbott’s time at Berkeley as Abbott encounters Sergio again with a theory that happens to link the aliens and orbs theory to Berkeley as well. What makes The BYU/Berkeley Plot work is that as unbelievable as Abbott’s story appears, Abbott finds it just as fascinating and absurd. And his demeanor on stage sells it.
Even with some unruly audience members in attendance, Abbott maintains control of his piece through his humor and wit. The BYU/Berkeley Plot isn’t a life-changing storytelling solo piece but it certainly is entertaining.