Review: Heidi Regan: Heidi vs Sharks at Pleasance Courtyard

Every Fringe there’s probably about 300 improv Shakespeare shows ‘with a modern twist’ on the go.

With so many shows on offer, it’s hard to be original, but I’ll stick my neck out and say that I’m almost certain that this is the only show at the festival that uses PowerPoint presentations to describe a love of sharks and world trade deals. If weird awkward comedy is your thing, you’ll be in your element here.

Heidi vs Sharks might be her debut hour, but Heidi Regan’s performance excels far beyond her comedic years, having crafted a show full of excellently deadpan delivery and brilliant execution. Using a selection of family photos, shark film timelines, bad film clips and hilariously basic PowerPoint throughout, there was a great deal of variety to keep everyone engrossed for the hour – even during the political parts. 

Including warming tales of a shark film fan club with two of her friends and the assertion that she wasn’t always as confident as she appears today, the show feels like a thoroughly engaging, shark-illustrated autobiography. There’s no escaping that Heidi vs Sharks is heavily reliant on visuals, but this is no disadvantage. They are a crucial part of the performance and Regan does well to weave them into the narrative in such a way that they add to the show rather than distracting from it.

It’ll be very interesting to see how Regan follows up this very impressive debut, though if the success of this year is anything to go by, she’s going to need a bigger room.

Heidi Regan: Heidi vs Sharks, Pleasance Courtyard, 19-26 Aug, 7.15pm 

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