What happens when you mix an existential dilemma with a stand-up comedian? According to Quantum mechanics, one distinct possibility is the ricochet routine of Bill Santiago, currently performing on F Street for anyone willing to take the plunge.
Santiago has cobbled together a stand-up show that wrestles with the questions we all have about the mysteries of life, the fascinations of philosophies, and the silliness of science.
He has mixed theory with his own experiences and anecdotes, and tries to tease out substance from seemingly disparate events and ideologies. Full of many funny bits and jokes, the 75-minute sketch bounces around from topic to topic, from Heisenberg to Apple, from nursing to numerology, without spending much time on any one string of jokes. While it might be dizzying to follow, the bits themselves can be side-splitting. One particular favorite of mine was a sequence concerning the inclusion of Green Eggs and Ham as the missing book of the bible.
But if the content can be rushed and hectic, Santiago makes up for it with his elastic facial expressions and constant craving to connect with the audience. Truly, the instances of audience interaction stand out as his best moments. Santiago’s mugging helps to land his jokes and share glimpses into his personal life. On the other hand, his vocal delivery dribbles off toward the ends of punchlines, and issues of pacing and momentum challenge the flow of the routine.
The Remarkable Big Bang
Written and performed by Bill Santiago
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The Immaculate Big Bang is an open invitation to a work in progress, complete with index cards laid out on a table nearby (though they were rarely referenced). Santiago is actively developing this show and changing the order of events with each performance. He zooms from the death of his father, to Catholicism, to his impressionable daughter, Cielo, to Schrödinger’s Cat, with breeze and abandon. The flow and transitions need work, but that’s to be expected with a piece in development.
What Santiago really needs is an audience. I urge you all to make the trip to Caos on F and take this existential journey with some friends and some drinks. Where else can you grab a laugh hand-in-hand with some philosophy?
The Immaculate Big Bang Written and Performed by Bill Santiago . Reviewed by Tyler Herman.