Luca Cupani

Luca Cupani

Luca Cupani began comedy in 2014 and won the So You Think You're Funny? competition at the Edinburgh Fringe the following year.
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Luca Cupani: Happy Orphan

Edinburgh Fringe comedy review

Luca Cupani has created a delightful, funny, autobiographical show, a revelatory piece of strangeness that is completely endearing.  

There’s an otherworldly, naïve quality to Cupani; he’s chatty like a child and yet lets fall pieces of information about his background which make your jaw drop. Other people might have gone the other way and done an intense, dramatic, misery memoir of a suffocating relationship, guilt, death and religion – but he invites comparison with Woody Allen (without the ick bits) for his preoccupation with big themes treated with levity. 

He recalls anxiety rather than lives it, dealing with the grimness of some of his childhood and adolescence by feigning obliviousness. Eleven years of therapy were not wasted. 

His scene-setting material about becoming a British citizen is automatically funny when you hear his dulcet Italian tones, and he dismisses a millennium of Italian cultural achievement with ‘performed well in the Renaissance’ and an impeccably logical account of how Italy beat the Nazis in World War Two.  

But the business of the show is how he came to be living at home with Mom and Pop until the age of 35, with a curfew, compulsory Bible readings and pretty much only his classical education for company. Then comes the story of his own liberation. His mother sounds an absolute character, putting it generously, a Marlboro-smoking, religious, guilt-tripping control freak Mafia fan and his coming to terms with her death is briskly, brutally hilarious.  

This is full-on comedy with a lightness of touch and not a whiff of sentiment or a tug on the heartstrings, peppered with hilariously macabre moments presented as perfectly normal, which in Italy, he insists, they are.  

It’s a charming show with the cheeriness and energy of a cartoon and something of a cartoon’s grotesque truth-telling, too.

• Luca Cupani: Happy Orphan is on at Just The Tonic at The Caves at 2.20pm

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Published: 8 Aug 2022

Past Shows

Edinburgh Fringe 2015

Luca Cupani: Still Falling

Edinburgh Fringe 2017

Luca Cupani: It's Me!

Edinburgh Fringe 2018

Luca Cupani: God Digger

Edinburgh Fringe 2019

Luca Cupani: Lives I Never Lived

Edinburgh Fringe 2022

Luca Cupani: Happy Orphan


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