I have to say, going to the London Wonderground Festival to see “James BuSTAR” was a bit of an experience. On entering the Spiegeltent, the first thing I noticed was the number of children in the audience. I was surrounded by ankle biters on all sides, all of whom seemed very excited to be there as we took our seats around the central stage in the deceptively large tent.
The show started with a lovely parody of the ‘Ghostbusters’ theme – and I would recommend when you go and see the show, really listen to the words – and a suggestion that everyone should tweet James (@JamesBuSTARLive) with ideas of everyday things he could juggle. Then the lights went down and the man himself took to the stage. Young, slim and dressed completely in black, apart from a yellow tie, James started the show juggling colour changing, glow in the dark balls. As an opening, this was amazing. It was mesmerising watching the balls move through the air in front of us. At times they were moving so fast that I wondered if there was a second person on the stage with James. Glow in the dark clubs followed the balls and really set the tone for the sheer skill of the juggling we were going to be seeing over the next hour.
However, James is not just a man that can juggle, why limit yourself to one string on your bow after all? He is in fact a wonderful, comedy entertainer who, within seconds of starting to talk, had established a connection with the entire audience who hung on his every word and responded appreciatively to his extremely witty banter. Using his exuberant personality, James managed to get away with telling some of the worst ‘dad jokes’ I’ve ever heard, whilst bantering good naturedly with adult and child alike. I would have been happy to sit and watch James as a one man show, but he didn’t work entirely alone, and there were elements of audience participation that included James ignoring the first rule of show business ‘never work with animals and children’ as he got members of the audience to assist him in delivering a first rate performance of the juggling art whilst also being the foil for his comedic talents. Obviously, I’m not going to say too much about the actual tricks as they need to be experienced to be believed but some of them really were unique in the juggling world.
Overall “James BuSTAR” is a superb all-round entertainer. His juggling skills are first rate, as is his amazing flexibility – I have never seen anyone do what he did with a tennis racket before – and precision of movement, but he is so much more. It is possible to teach the skill of juggling – though I’ve never mastered it – but James has that extra innate skill of being able to connect with an audience. He is an extremely likeable comedian who can verbally keep a hugely mixed aged audience rocking with laughter while eliciting ‘oohs and ahs’ of appreciation as he throws things around the stage.
I think I can safely say that James BuSTAR is one of the best jugglers I’ve ever seen and that his show is manic, frenetic and deeply enjoyable from start to finish. After Kylie and Dame Edna, James BuSTAR could be one of Australia’s greatest additions to the entertainment world.
Review by Terry Eastham
James Bustar: Hilarious Antics and Mayhem
11th – 25th Jul 2015, 2.00pm
Direct from Australia, world record holding Comedy Juggler James Bustar brings his hilarious antics and mayhem to London Wonderground. A show full of side splitting comedy, juggling and randomness. Down under brought up over. ‘From the US to the UK, on the high seas and everywhere in between, BuSTAR and his daring routine are in high demand’ Hornsby Advocate.
Presented by Corrie McGuire for Objective Talent Management by arrangement with SQ
Sunday 19th July 2015