Edinburgh Festivals Magazine

Review: Sarah Kendall – Paper Planes at Assembly George Square 

Review: Sarah Kendall – Paper Planes at Assembly George Square 

Sarah Kendall is a spinner of stories, a teller of tales. A master of meditative musings. The Australian took a side road from straight stand-up quite a few years ago and she’s become incredibly successful at it.

The double Edinburgh Comedy Awards nominee and star of the acclaimed BBC Radio 4 series, Australian Trilogy is back with another magical and mainly personal monologue. In a homage to the book she is trying but desperately failing to write, the set is told in four chapters. Both cerebral and silly from the off, it begins with a trip to the theatre to see a Chekov play. Boredom is avoided largely thanks to a pint of lager. It’s ‘downed’ but definitely not in the way you’d imagine.

There are tales of sex education, sleep deprivation and a strange encounter with a movie star in L.A. These are fleshed out with some fine impersonations – her super-posh agent and super-shouty mum being the highlights. Expertly crafted and beautifully delivered, these are the sort of stories you’d happily listen to on the radio on a Sunday afternoon whilst chopping the veg.

Sarah displays her experience and stage-craft later in the set when a piece on her fear of flying threatens to plummet out of control. On asking an audience member why she’s leaving, she’s told that the girl is concerned that she’ll find it too upsetting as she was involved in a major plane crash that left her in a coma for months. She’s here in Edinburgh performing in a play about it. Sarah graciously allows her share her story. This is the perfect venue for it, after all. A beautiful, gentle hour but a little laugh-light for a comedy show.

Sarah Kendall: Paper Planes, Assembly George Square, 31 July – 25 Aug, 7pm