Matt Dyktynski: Pole Dancer

Note: This review is from 2004

Review by Steve Bennett

It's clear Matt Dyktynski subscribes to the Philip Larkin theory of parental influence. He certainly believes his mum and dad screwed him up, with her promiscuous party lifestyle and his gambling addiction resulting a mixed-up childhood.

Everyone who goes on stage, it's assumed, has some personality defect which means they crave the adulation of strangers. But among the ranks of the psychologically flawed who end up comedians, Dyktynski seems remarkably normal ­ which kind of torpedoes his argument. In fact, the worst trait he can directly attribute to them is his fear of spiders.

Not that his parents weren't odd. His dad was Polish, his Lancashire mum a dancer ­ giving the show its tenuous title ­ and their lives are full of drama, sex, drinking and fighting. They finally split up when Dyktynski was 16, after dad Miroslav put his teenager's trust fund on a lame horse called Pig Latin and lost the lot.

Dyktynski introduces the couple in suitable style; his father with a grim East European folk song, his mum with a chirpy George Formby-style number.

It's typical of the way the show unfolds, a series of set pieces designed to demonstrate the full gamut of his abilities, from singer to stand-up to actor with a lot of accents at his disposal. This is a show obviously written for a casting director as much as an audience.

To be fair, Dyktynski has got a lot of talent to show off. His story is well told, with convincing, natural delivery and an assured style; his jaunty songs livening the mood.

The script is less certain, with the more straightforward stand-up sections especially falling short on imagination, covering such bog-standard topics as the things parents say to their kids, and "immaculate conception? What must Joseph have made of all that, then?"

But these are by far the weakest sections in a show that is overall very nicely done. It's unlikely to rock your world, but it's more than enough to entertain you solidly for an hour.

Review date: 1 Jan 2004
Reviewed by: Steve Bennett

What do you think?

We see you are using AdBlocker software. Chortle relies on advertisers to fund this website so it’s free for you, so we would ask that you disable it for this site. Our ads are non-intrusive and relevant. Help keep Chortle viable.