Dylan Cole's It All Sparks Joy is definitely worth seeing this Fringe.
Comedy meets tragedy in this confronting work. Cole is a very talented person and this is evident as soon as he 'pops' onto the stage. Drowning in his personal library of self help books, Cole tries to 'tidy up' his physical and emotional space... with little progress.
This is a great example of simple storytelling, supported by an intelligent and vulnerable text. Cole is skilful at balancing the narrative and providing relief where the audience needed it, whilst at the same resonating the truth of the trauma experienced.
The set design was probably too simple in that we could have used more clutter to fully immerse ourselves into the world. But Cole engaged with it well and of course, this is Fringe - a touring show requires minimal expense which requires minimal set! So we forgive it.
There were some choices around sound design that jarred. While the children's songs were well chosen and poignant, there was no reason for Cole to wear a radio mic in such an intimate space, and the mobile phone sound effect would have been better coming from a real phone buried somewhere in the mess. Both of these things broke the reality of the world slightly, reminding us that we were watching a theatre show.
Still, these are tiny things in the grand scheme of what is a very accomplished show, written, produced and directed all by Cole. Go and see it, there aren't many shows left! And maybe pack a tissue.
It All Sparks Joy is showing at Masonic - Owl Room at Gluttony - Masonic Lodge North Terrace for Adelaide Fringe until 23 February 2020