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Chris Mayo's Panic Attack

Note: This review is from 2011

Review by Marissa Burgess

Chris Mayo's debut show is about worrying, and as he appears to be an amiable fella you don't want to add to his worries. Indeed worrying about what people – including reviewers – think of him is on his list of neuroses, but it has to be said, this show is nder par.

Mayo started stand-up in 2005, but the material Mayo has assembled over those six years doesn't quite cut it. Employing a psychiatrist's suggestions of methods to overcome his anxiety issues, Mayo attempts a variety of activities including social events, sport and forming relationships. It's a loose premise on which to hang material about dining alone in restaurants, being so bad at sports at school and overcoming his constant thoughts of death.

In the middle Mayo reads a short piece of writing about the experience of going clubbing. It's not at all badly written with some nice lyrical sections but seems incongruous and screams padding. Elsewhere in the set he displays a poetic sense of language with some lovely descriptions littered throughout.

The humour, though, is more likely to raise a smile rather than a big laugh. Though it has to be acknowledged that we were a stony crowd. Apart from the keepers of birds of prey centre, a comedic gift sat on the front row, the rest of us were all pretty quiet.

To Mayo's credit he maintained the energy throughout, although it is quite nervous energy, which teeters over into the jittery.

It's another one of those shows with material that probably works better across a shorter, tighter set but that needed far more work to shape it into a whole hour.

Review date: 16 Aug 2011
Reviewed by: Marissa Burgess

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