Reading the phrase “improv comedy”, most of us would feel an element of uncertainty about what’s in store. As this was also my first visit to The Brisbane Hotel, I was in the dark entirely before arriving at this this well-placed Perth drinking spot
Those who’ve been will know it as a particularly pleasant venue – Michelle tells me this Perth bar is where she fell in love with burger boy. I’m from the UK, so the phrase “beer garden” makes me think of lopsided wooden furniture, precarious plastic parasols and wasps. This meant the Brisbane’s outside space – palms, a fountain, abundant seating – seemed delightful. On a warm evening, it felt classy but relaxed, and I’d be surprised if it doesn’t draw a crowd throughout the summer.
This Perth bar has plenty of room inside too, and the upstairs venue is equally welcoming. Laid-back but well thought out, a faux-brickwork backdrop lends the spot a certain “comedy” flavour. I’d guess the old-school leather seating and extra chairs could house 50+ people, but there was a mixed-aged bunch of about 25 when we arrived for the first improv show.
Lazy Susan’s Comedy Den has been based at The Brisbane Hotel for some time, and hosts more conventional stand-up nights on Tuesdays and Fridays (details via the link at the bottom). However, A Fistful of Wednesdays represents newer material. Over the course of the night, two unscripted acts try to achieve on-stage alchemy for the entertainment of the audience.
The same crews play a four week stint, so if you want to catch Frankie’s or the Free Love Impro, head down October 26th. Naturally, the beauty of improvisational comedy means you never know what you might witness. On this occasion, the 7.30pm performance of “Frankie’s” saw a narrative unfurl between live musical interludes, and the six-person troupe – three comedy performers, a singer and two musicians – got a warm response from the audience. While the free-flowing style might not be to everyone’s taste, the attractive setting and price – $15 for both acts – should encourage curious punters to come along.
Joking aside, a pub’s not much good without a decent range of drinks. I was impressed by The Brisbane Hotel’s beers, which included imports I’d never seen before – US brews from Rogue and Lost Coast – as well as some worthy domestic options. A Golden IPA from Victoria’s Kaiju! was an ideal warm up act for a WA whopper: Nail’s Hughe Dunne Imperial Brown Ale. I’m informed that a glass of local SBS from the extensive wine list was also a winner.
The drinks would be enough to make The Brisbane Hotel worth a stop, and apparently this has been the case for a while. Adding some unpredictable comedy to the recipe is a positive move in my book though, and gives Perth punters a different option for their Wednesday routine.
Disclaimer: foodie cravings was invited as a guest of pSquared. See disclosure policy for further details.