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Red Mole on the Road

Film (Full Length) – 1979

I'm just looking forward to having some early nights, and some days when I can dither.
– Red Mole member Jean McAllister, at the end of the tour
Red Mole's all about a missionary attempt to convert the natives to another way of life. And we're a group of evangelicals who are touring round the nation with the wrath of God in us at the moment, proclaiming the second coming, in the vague hope that the second coming might come.
– Frontman Alan Brunton on his group's mission, early in the documentary
[Red Mole] threatened, they amused, they dared, they shocked, they converted existing genres to new uses. They turned existing conventions — above all, musical ones — on their heads, while working the small venues and the large ones, opening up minds from Bluff to Cape Reinga.
– Bill Direen on Alan Brunton, AudioCulture, 16 May 2018
All possible elements of theatre and spectacle are employed by the skilful members of the group.
– New York magazine The Villager on Red Mole
...we believe if you can entertain people on their own terms on their own grounds, in their own marketplace, you can change their heads.
– Red Mole founder Alan Brunton, in the third clip
Alan’s idea was that, as performers, we existed in three incarnations: the characters we played on stage, our real-life selves and an indeterminate third, a kind of ur-self, in whiteface, mostly encountered on the road: as desperados, ghosts, revenants, hitchhikers, vagabonds.
– Author and ex Red Mole Martin Edmond on Alan Brunton, in his backgrounder on Red Mole on the Road
Red Mole specialises in a brand of fierce, comic nihilism articulated through a mixture of popular forms drawn from the carnival and the music hall. Part Mardi Gras, part vaudeville — masquerade, mime, tap dancing, Jesus-jumping, mumming, calypsos, tangos, shadow puppetry and one liners combine in a relentless series of satires and parodies expressive of a lively cynicism towards virtually everything.
– Soho Weekly News reviewer Noel Carroll on Red Mole show Goin' to Djibouti, 18 January 1979