13:00 – Laughing Horse @ Cabaret Voltaire (Venue 338) Aug 2-26th
Bunbury Rating – ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
From the start, this show was warm and welcoming. The entire room was attentive, expectant.
Tales From the Elsewhere 21:45 Laughing Horse @ Espionage (Venue 185) 2-26th Aug
The first sketch came from two familiar faces. They were none other than the smashing chaps from Love Hard (Tales From The Elsewhere) and as you’d expect, the sketch they performed was a very well written piece, masterfully performed, quick witted with excellent word play and brilliant one liners. Quick and energetic, they really got the audience’s juices flowing.
Hostage: 16:30 Just The Tonic @ The Grassmarket Centre, just The Meeting Room (Venue 27) 18-26th Aug
Keeping the aforementioned juices going, a troop called Bad Clowns followed. With boundless energy and a slick performance, these three are smooth operators. The sketch they had prepared was silly, fun and very well written. They built suspense carefully, then crashed through it to a very satisfying end. Another strong performance to follow the first.
Lola & Jo
Focus Groupies: 16:00 Underbelly, Cowgate, Delhi Belly (Venue 61) 18-26th Aug
it was clear from the start that this was brilliantly written, and it was unusually performed. 4th wall? What 4th wall. A slow burning sketch that builds momentum and laughs through the writing and structure. The character work is pin point accurate and leaves you thinking of those people we know who are ‘exactly like that’. Highly enjoyable all round and easily a match for the first two.
Tina’s Leaving Party
Hot Young Things: 21:50 Just The Tonic @ Th Grassmarket Centre, Just The Meeting Room (Venue 27) 18-26th Aug
This is a lovely bit of business. True brilliance shines though here, as with the previous three acts. This is another demonstration of how timing, presentation and top notch writing comes together to produce something that really sticks with you. The subversion of expectation is masterful and the chemistry between the two is strong, leading to a fine honed performance.
4 excellent performances performing their own material but this show has only just begun.
Now, each group must present their interpretation of one of the other group’s sketch. So here’s what went down.
Love Hard as Lola & Jo
They really captured the sketch well and it got savage fast. The sketch went a slightly different way which was equally pleasing and brilliantly funny. Love Hard really captured the over sharing aspect of the sketch and extracted the urine magnificently. The crowd was waiting for it and they delivered, proving the excellent quick wittedness of the performers.
Bad Clowns as Tracy’s Leaving Party
Again, the friendly savagery showed early on and it was amazing. Bad Clowns looked like they had so much fun and so did the audience. I’m still laughing now as I type up this review. They captured the mannerism very well and the last sketch was incredible. I don’t think I’ll ever forget seeing two men stuffed into one t-shirt one of whom is brushing the other’s teeth fairly violently. That much toothpaste in one mouth should be illegal.
Lola & Jo as Love Hard
The hilarity just keeps on coming with this performance. I loved the fact that they riffed Shakespeare word for word. It totally blew mw away. The mock energy and silliness was perfectly captured and the friendly rivalry was palpable. An incredible performance presented passionatly and tenderly while being side achingly funny. Awesome. Just awesome. These two really have a feel for spontaneity.
Tina’s Leaving Party as Bad Clowns
Seeing a sketch written for three performers but presented for two was unbelievable. The incredible thing was that it didn’t make a difference. Far from feeling sparse they filled the time they had expertly with superb inpersonations of the guys from Bad Clowns and fabulous sarcasm. At one point I couldn’t look at them because I was laughing so hard. These two are highly skilled and so on point. The audience loved it and so did the performers.
The standard of comedy from all was matched here and I feel very lucky to have seen this. You simply must see this show. It would be foolish not to.