• Amy Toledano

Role Play Gourmet presented by www.coachingforgeeks.com

What is it? Role Play Gourmet is a Ted-Talk-3-Course-Meal-Role-Playing-Game experience.

What is it all about?

Paul Flannery really likes Role Playing Games and really likes cooking. With the help of Rob Thompson, Role Play Gourmet is the amalgamation of them both. A casual experience where you learn cooking tips and role playing tropes all while enjoying a three course meal (premium tickets) or canapes (standard tickets.)

How did it make me feel?

It is worth noting that I saw Role Play Gourmet on it’s opening night, but even taking that into consideration to call it chaotic would be an understatement. Paul Flannery astoundingly lost control of the audience, space and time all at once in the opening few minutes. However, both Flannery and Thompson are extremely likeable performers and they both managed to keep the audience on side throughout. They did this mainly by creating an extremely casual atmosphere, they really make you feel like you are sharing dinner with friends. This comes with it’s pros and cons, although you are relaxed and entertained throughout, it creates an atmosphere which allows audience members to chime in whenever they want to with questions, adlibs and requests. This was the start of the end for Role Play Gourmet as audience members are rarely as funny or clever as they think they are (certainly not more funny or clever than the performers and writers) and also: time. For a show about cooking, such a precise art form, Role Play Gourmet ran away with itself quickly. Flannery asks Thompson for time checks often, but seems to have no regard for it, throwing together the last two courses in the last 15 minutes (and then running over by 10). The food was delicious, but I missed the whimsical and engaging scenes that they skipped over and rushed through, and any discernible link to Role Playing Games. I have no doubts this show, if performed as described would be a five star experience, with incredible food, joyful writing and familiar company, but Flannery and Thompson are not ready and instead rush through the meaty parts of the show in favour of frivolous stories and unwelcome asides from the audience.

Anything else?

This show is certainly an experience, one that would benefit from more rehearsal and an egg-timer.

Role Play Gourmet is playing at the Forge, VAULT Festival, until the 16th February 2020.

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