Adina Grand Treasury Adelaide
Until 19 Mar 2021

Review by Lance Jones

Studying can be so time consuming. There’s so much more to life than swatting on the books. Like having lunch, for example. What if you could combine the two? Yes, you too can become one of the nations “smartest, fastest and laziest” by attending Professor Longsword’s wonderfully satirical show “A Lunchtime MBA”, beautifully played by Adelaide’s own Steve Davis, and directed by comic legend Glynn Nicholas.

Paul Keating would turn over in his grave if he were indeed dead. Thumbing his nose at Paul’s FBT legacy, the Professor combines serious “study” with a fine lunch at Treasury 1860. The lunch isn’t compulsory, nor is it part of the act, but the smart money gets there early and enjoys the entire experience. The Restaurant at Treasury 1860 is a great place for a feed, after all.

Steve’s “Professor Longsword” is charmingly quaint, making him quite believable. Ably assisted by his sidekick “Paige Turner”, the show applies a completely tongue-in-cheek parody of tertiary education. Those with university experience will find some of the themes hilariously familiar. “Chequebook degrees”, “plagiarism”, “academic staff” and the emerging phenomenon of cheating with “Artificial Intelligence” writing assignments for you are all fair game for the Professor to ruminate upon.

However, one does not need to be tertiary qualified to enjoy the humour. This is quite simply a very funny show, where no subject is spared from the farce. Even the well-known “freeloader” student in the “group assignment” gets attention from the Professor. We’ve all met “that guy” at some stage of our lives. Yet all that gets swept aside because all attendees “graduate” at the end of the show with a so-called bona fide “Master of Business Administration (Expedited Learning)”, complete with a “parchment” to take home as a souvenir, presented to you by the Professor himself.

The hour-long show is a wonderful way to spend a lunch time. The laughs were plentiful, the humour intelligent, and the presentation bright. Steve is a natural performer who delivers the clever script in an engaging and endearing manner. He in fact holds a “real” MBA himself from a “real” university, which makes his scathing satirical deconstruction of the MBA phenomenon even more poignant. I guess that kind of allows him to do it.

There are many questions along the way and seeking answers to such questions can be dangerous. That’s why the Professor’s questions are always rhetorical, they don’t need to be answered! That makes for a 101% success rate for this fine Professor.

Get ready to join “the Learjet of success” and enjoy a long lunch with the Professor this Fringe!

Rating: 4 stars (out of 5)