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Review - Gwyneth Goes Skiing

Pleasance Theatre

Playing until: 16th February 2024

Photo credict: Jonny Ruff

Review {AD-PR Invite}

Gwyneth Goes Skiing features a very bizarre Gwyneth Paltrow ski trial and transforms it into a wildly camp staged production with music. Awkward Productions have provided a comedic journey through, at times unbelievable, legal proceedings. Having originally premiered in December, the sold out show has returned for an encore run, taking the audience through the skiing collision itself, and playing out the ridiculous story all the way through to the court trial, where the retired optometrist, Terry Sanderson (Joseph Martin) sues Oscar winner Gwyneth Paltrow (Linus Karp) for $300,000. Gwyneth in all her goop glory countersues for a symbolic $1.


Karp and Martin, a queer theatre duo, choose to keep some of the script verbatim, with this approach adding some absurdly surreal and silly elements to the show. The production incorporates some of the more memorable trial moments, from Sanderson calling Paltrow "Godzilla" and Paltrow humorously downplaying the impact of the collision - stating that the only impact was the half day of skiing that she lost. The inclusion of puppetry, with Apple Paltrow being played by an apple, and original songs by RuPaul's Drag Race songwriter Leland adds pzazz. There was slight disappointment that the songs were mimed and not performed live, although this did add to the comedic value.


The highlight of Gwyneth Goes Skiing is without a doubt Karp's portrayal of Paltrow, capturing her idiosyncrasies, from the constant stroking of her straight hair blonde to her smug superior demeanour. The show indulges in Gwyneth-centric humour, constantly poking fun at Goop and the iconic "conscious uncoupling" with Chris Martin. The audience participation adds an inclusive touch and an added level of dynamic to the performance.


However, it didn’t feel as though there was not enough material to stretch the full duration of the performance, and the end of the first half felt very disjointed and of little relevance, especially when a large cardboard deer started speaking to squirrel puppets. We were eager to get to the courtroom setting, which didn’t happen until the second half.


Having said that, Gwyneth Goes Skiing offers an entertaining experience, with a script packed full of jokes and clever references, keeping the audience engaged from start to finish.


Written, Directed and Lyrics by: Linus Karp & Joseph Martin

Original Music and Lyrics by: Leland

Original Songs produced by: Gape Lopez

Produced by: Nick Connaughton

Lighting Design by: James Appleby

Sound Design by: Roly Botha

Choreography by: Sam Carlyle

Puppetry Consultant: Mikey Brett

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