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Review: Lost in Translation at the Rhino Room - ADL Fringe

Review by Tatum Stafford


The premise for the ‘Lost in Translation’ troupe is hilarious on paper. The group, plus a few special guests each night, feed a popular movie script into multiple online translators (yes, even Bing), through multiple different languages, and perform a one-hour abridged version of the script that is spit out. 


On the night I attended, the movie in question was ‘Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban’, and boy did the multiple translators deliver when it came to some ridiculous writing of dialogue, characters’ names, and especially the magic spells.


The show is hosted and narrated by Aaron Finan, who is a natural with the crowd and provided helpful doses of context and lots of hilarious asides throughout the hour. He is joined onstage with a troupe of talented performers, all of which slotted into iconic Harry Potter roles like Severus Snape, Remus Lupin, Albus Dumbledore, and Harry Potter himself, to name a few. 


The hilarity started straight away when we met ‘Gary’ Potter and his family and Private Parts Drive. It’s hard to put into words how unhinged, tangential, and hilarious this show got over the next hour, and I’d imagine the same could be said about other films the troupe are covering over their stint at this year’s Adelaide Fringe. 


The concept for this show is absolutely brilliant, and super accessible for anyone who has seen the film (or not, shout-out to the brave woman in the front row who admitted she had never seen it and was thus a bit confused). The scripts, though at times nonsensical, mostly make sense and create some hilariously stupid scenarios for the actors onstage.


On the night I attended, the guest performers slot in seamlessly with the regular Lost in Translation crew, and it was a treat to see them leap into action and pick up roles with little rehearsal (in the best way possible). The troupe have a great comradery and clearly a few repeat offender fans in the audience, and it was a really welcoming and warm vibe within the performance space - a great sign of their many sold-out shows to come. 


If you’re looking for a bit of fun with friends, colleagues, family, or anyone really, don’t dawdle - Lost in Translation is selling out for good reason. I’d encourage you to grab a ticket and enjoy the chaos up close. 


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