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John Tothill: The Last Living Libertine

Words: Caitlin Finnerty

5 stars

The Last Living Libertine by John Tothill effortlessly blurs the lines between cabaret and TEDTalk, offering an evening that’s as intellectually stimulating as it is side-splittingly funny.

John Tothill, the charismatic Last Living Libertine (citation needed), takes the stage in a cheetah print shirt, a shimmy, and a plastic cup brimming with white wine, setting the tone for a campy and mesmerizing journey. This debut hour is a delightful blend of lecture and lyrical wit, cleverly presented by a self-proclaimed “dogshit teacher.”

Tothill’s unique style creates an atmosphere that’s part stand-up, part lesson plan, and part slumber party. He guides the audience through a maze of tangents and side stories, all cleverly disguised as play rather than conventional jokes. His candidness and charismatic aura allow him to effortlessly weave history lessons, wise sayings, and personal anecdotes into an unforgettable performance.

With his clarinet skills, Tothill transforms the venue into a Berlin techno haven, leaving the audience desperate for more. His interactions with the crowd, particularly a trio of retired teachers, showcase his unmatched crowd work skills and bring an additional layer of hilarity to the show.

Tothill’s captivating presence and mastery of the stage make him a standout performer who could easily hold the audience’s attention for hours on end. The Last Living Libertine is a show that leaves a lasting impression, a lesson in itself on how to infuse stand-up with poetic charm and intellectual charisma.

John Tothill: The Last Living Libertine
Pleasance Courtyard, Below
25-27 Aug


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