The Rap Guide to Evolution

Dates and Venue 29 October – 10 November 2013, 8pm | Historic Theatre, The Cultch, 1895 Venables Street

Creator and Performer Baba Brinkman DJ and Music Producer Jamie Simmons Director Dodd Loomis

Reviewer Karen Fitzgibbon

This is Rap for all you intellectuals out there. The Rap Guide To Evolution may well be the new approach in teaching dry subjects like microbial genomics. Have I lost you yet?

As I enter the theatre I am confronted with a large black and white poster off to the left side of the stage. It is the powerful face of Darwin as an older man with long white hair, white beard and penetrating intelligent eyes.

Canadian rap artist, Baba Brinkman enters centre stage with a big smile and confidence. He immediately begins to tell the story of evolution through rap music. He makes it fun, scientifically interesting and we actually remembered much of it after leaving the theatre. “Yup, a new way to teach and a renewed appreciation of science!”

Professor Mark Pallen of Birmingham University (UK) hired Brinkman to bring to fruition the 200th year of Darwin’s life in the form of Hip-Hop. The show won the Drama Desk Award in New York for Outstanding Solo Performance as well as previously winning a Scotsman Fringe Award for Outstanding Playwriting in Edinburgh.

How Brinkman manages to remember so many fast moving lines is amazing to me and I'm quite sure by the reaction of the audience that many felt the same way. I think we can call it “AWE.” Brinkman has written many Hip-Hop classic plays and his talent is amazing. This definitely is a refreshing presentation and like nothing I have seen before. Many would have fumbled with all of the scientific terminology but the words just rolled off Brinkman’s tongue without a pause.

Brinkman had the audience punching the air and singing “I am a African.” No, not “An African” as English language perfectionists might prefer.According to this Hip-Hop we all originated from there. This is a great performance. It could be a bit shorter but all in all a successful, brilliant show!

If you want a unique and refreshing way to look at our ancestry come down to the Cultch.

© 2013 Karen Fitzgibbon