Thursday, 22 April 2021

From relationships and love handles to lockdown

IT was with some expectation that I settled down on my sofa to watch This Show Does Not Contain Nuts.

I had been looking forward to it since the live screening was cancelled due to misfiring wi-fi a couple of weeks ago.

So it was great to see those golden curtains finally lift to reveal host Maddi Sharkey, from Middle Assendon, squeeze through a chimney dressed as Father Christmas.

Maddi created the show as a “platform for female comedians to shine,” which was true for both her and stand-up Gabby Killick, who were wearing the most sparkly jumpers I have ever seen.

In a nod to the cancelled show, Maddi said: “People told me not to worry as they were having a lovely time on the YouTube comments” before adding that there was one viewer who shone at entertaining the rest.

Maddi said: “Simon Goldthorpe, if I ever do a show that does contain nuts, you will be here front and centre.”

Tania Edwards, who supported Katherine Ryan on her UK tour, kicked off the evening talking about how she coped through the national lockdowns as her own experience of coronavirus.

Her casual and monotone delivery made the performance all the more funny. It was discrete, droll humour hidden in a mature and sophisticated performance. Next up was Gabby, who is a former student at The Henley College and started her act with a vivacious parody rap of Eminem’s The Real Slim Shady.

It was quick, timely and very, very cheeky. It is definitely one of the more memorable stage entrances I’ve seen.

Though the risque song wasn’t one to be heard by any youngsters, as Maddi warned, I am sure the single ladies watching appreciated it.

Later, she gave a theatrical comparison between the different social media platforms (My Space — remember that?) and even gave some helpful advice on how to pose for Instagram.

The show had a small live audience that could be heard laughing throughout the evening. The rest of us were watching virtually through YouTube or Zoom. At least no one could judge our outfit choices (pyjamas).

In the end, it was Brighton comedian Laura Lexx who stole the show. Her relatable jokes from anxiety to love handles were a hit, although I wasn’t sure if I was laughing at the jokes or at my own dismay.

The golden curtain then fell as Maddi wished us a merry Christmas with a bottle of bubbly in hand, which, coincidentally, is exactly how I intend to spend the holiday.

The show was more than I could have hoped for on a chilled Thursday evening.

For a production that is only three years old, I am really impressed and I hope that Maddi carries on providing a platform for talented women who do indeed shine.

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