Review by Jessica Trajanoska
Did you hear? Suren Jayemanne has a white girlfriend! Deus Eczemachina is an intelligently entertaining perspective on racism in Australia, the Wu Tang Clan, and what the difference is between eczema and psoriasis. Jayemanne shows no signs of nerves, his delivery is confident but not cocky and he creates a comfortable atmosphere for the audience.
When no one feels the need to check their phones during your show, that’s definitely a good sign! Jayemanne delivers his ideas in an amusing and thought-provoking way; he gives credit to the intelligence of the audience, not going for the cheap laughs. Although advocating for policy that would make it compulsory for every straight white female in Australia to date someone with an ethnic background at least once in their lives, the sentiment is that through cultural exposure we can breakdown the hostility that fuels much of the racism experienced, even by Jayemanne himself.
The material is current, referencing the Australian film Lion (and Jayemanne’s uncanny resemblance to actor Dev Patel) and it’s relatable. Jayemanne says what we’re all thinking and probably too embarrassed to say out loud – particularly in relation to racism in Australia. By speaking about his own experiences, not only with racism but white privilege, Jayemanne is able to accurately capture the thoughts and attitudes of the audience.
I suspect we were all laughing not only because the material is funny but also because we can see ourselves in a lot of what Jayemanne has to say. There is truth and honesty in Jayemanne’s material, he isn’t trying too hard and the audience responds to his authenticity. Jayemanne presents some cringe-worthy moments, too that might be too real for some but it’s not for the shock factor. It’s to bring light to the reality of day-to-day life in multicultural Australia. And it’s funny!
When: 30th March – 23rd April 2017 | 8:30pm | No show Wednesdays
Where: The Evatt Room | Trade’s Hall | MELBOURNE
Tickets: $18 – $23
Info: Duration 50 minutes | Suitable 16+ | Wheelchair accessible