Review: Stevie Martin: Vol 1 at the Pleasance Courtyard

This show has a dramatic opening, and an arty opening, and an Olympic opening, and a Victorian opening, and many, many, many other openings.

Ultimately, this is a sketch show consisting pretty much entirely of openings to other non-existent sketches. Expect an hour of sheer nonsense from Stevie Martin’s Vol.1.

The best part of this show is the opening. No, seriously: Stevie Martin brilliantly carries out some of her strongest material early on in the hour. Aided by dramatic smoke and bold visuals she sets up the theme of her show perfectly before she’s even made it on to the stage. The gags might be silly but her craft is not and this show is tightly executed in all respects, from the perfectly timed baby that falls from the ceiling to the DIY props that collapse on command. Of the many many opening, specific note should be given to her take on a ‘feminist art opening’.

Vol.1 may be Martin’s first solo show at the Edinburgh Fringe but she is no amateur. You might have seen her here before as part of sketch group Massive Dad, or caught her name in bylines for The Guardian, Elle and other notable publications. However, her talents are clearly more than ready to take on a full hour to themselves. This fun, innovative hour showcases all of her skills and her audience interaction proves she’s not just a dab hand at gangly absurdity but is also expertly witty on the fly. There’s a few high-notes she doesn’t quite reach, but there’s enough big laughs to make this hour of charming ridiculousness a memorable part of your Fringe.

Stevie Martin: Vol 1, Pleasance Courtyard, 1-27 Aug, 6pm



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