ryan millar roman around

Ryan Millar shows off Rome in Roman Around

Ryan’s first solo show is “an entertaining history lesson… thoroughly enjoyable.” (Chortle)

As the blurb says:

“See the great sites of Rome – without having to actually go there and do all that walking. Roman Around combines historical fact, anecdotes, and invisible site-seeing into an inventive and mildly educational hour of comedy.

Your tour guide Ryan also dishes the real dirt on some of the more dramatic events from Rome’s history. Simultaneously celebrating and skewering these historical tales, he weaves them into an irreverent and personal show chronicling his life in – and eventual flight from – Rome.”

Background

Ryan spent two years as a tour guide in Rome. As he says, “I showed up in Rome with no money and no idea what I was going to do, and eight months later I was a well-paid expert on the city.” Six months later he left. But while he was there, taking people through the incredible monuments and relating the fascinating and bizarre history to tourists, he realized it would make great theatre. So he wrote this show, which he performed in the Edinburgh and Camden Fringes.

Roman Around is the product of three years of thinking and writing. It is also the product of his love for the city and its history. For the audience, the show is both a guided tour of the city (including the Roman Forum, Saint Peter’s Basilica and the Sistine Chapel) as well as a window into one straniero‘s struggle to make sense of life as a foreigner in Rome.

Reviews

Three Weeks review of Roman Around at the Edinburgh Fringe (2010) ★★★★

PULLQUOTE: “Millar would make a most excellent drinking buddy, with chat educational enough to make you feel like downing a pint with him was a virtuous undertaking, and he can segue seamlessly into a good Michelangelo joke – quite the rare find.”

RemoteGoat reviewer Maddy Ryle gives the best explanation of what exactly the show is like here. ★★★★

PULLQUOTE: “an original concept, and given that Ryan is clearly both a good tour guide, and an astute commentator on his own life – and a really nice bloke to boot – it works very well.”

RemoteGoat reviewer David Harrison’s review is here. ★★★★

PULLQUOTE: “impressively hilarious and educational one man show.”

Chortle (the UK’s comedy encyclopedic compendium of hilarity and stuff) reviewed my final preview in London (2010). ★★★

PULLQUOTE: “an entertaining history lesson… thoroughly enjoyable.”

Reviewer Steve Bennett gives it three stars, but he seems to have really enjoyed the show. My favourite part is where he says “by crikey he must have made a cracking tour guide as he brings the yarns he does include to vivid life with engaging gusto. I defy anyone not to get the urge to see that inspiring Sistene roof [sic] once Millar has told his Michelangelo story.” So BOOM! There you go. Read it all here.

Spoonfed came late to the show, but still gave a pretty good (if occasionally wildly inaccurate review). Read it here. ★★★

PULLQUOTE: “Millar effortlessly switches between narrator mode and impersonating characters such as Michaelangelo. His re-enactment of the Renaissance painter building [sic] the Sistine Chapel is not only funny but it is expertly done as we seem to forget that we are being educated.”

Other write-ups

Nige from The New Current does a Q&A in the run-up to the Edinburgh Fringe 2010