Review: Kate Berlant: Communikate at Assembly George Square Studios

The lights are bright as Kate Berlant bursts onto stage with magnetic force. Diving into the set with plenty of theatricality, it was obvious from the outset that Communikate wasn’t going to be your typical stand-up hour. Communicating with her audience is one thing, but predicting their future is another.

Berlant is convinced she has psychic abilities, calling on the spirits to assist her in her quest. She aims to convince us as much as herself as she hilariously tries (and fails) to predict events, exercising her freedom on stage as both a comedian and potential mind reader.

At times, you couldn’t help but wonder if the next prediction would actually be true. But it doesn’t matter either way to Berlant, whose flexible approach to the structure of the show means she’s prepared for anything. You can see why it was a sell-out gig. At times, she even came close to harnessing her power – I mean, everyone has a mutual friend called Tom, right?

Berlant has an answer for everything and is clearly relaxed in her performance as she works the stage. Energetically strutting back and forth, she combines self-deprecating sarcasm with an air of self-assurance, while her ability to rattle through gag after gag kept the hour continuously fresh and entertaining and the direct audience interaction kept everyone’s spirits high and their minds gripped from the start. 

Kate Berlant: Communikate: Assembly George Square Studios, 8-26 Aug (not 13), 9.15pm

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