Sarah Kendall

Note: This review is from 2003

Review by Steve Bennett

Sarah Kendall has abandoned her usual idea of loosely covering one big issue in her Edinburgh show, instead offering an more relaxed hour of unrelated routines.

Not that the the lack of a theme has affected her in the least, with this year's show cementing her reputation as a classy, sardonic and likeable presence on the comedy circuit.

Some structure is provided with the inspired device of reading out a series of letters from 2073, in which an ageing Kendall talks to her younger self. In essence, this is little more than a bit of stand-up trickery - primarily providing a reason for lots of clever callbacks of earlier gags - but it is devastatingly effective.

Her stance is a winning combination of the intelligent and the downright stupid. Arguing, for example, that mankind has got lazy because we have mastered the food chain, but illustrating it with the brilliantly surreal idea of Skysharks that could savage us without warning.

Animals are a big thing for this sly Aussie - hedgehogs and hyenas also feature - but she can also cover some fairly edgy material about, say, serial killers, but get away with it because she employs a light touch rather than bluster.

Kendall is blessed with a naturally funny mind, and she knows how to use it. Few comics could get laughs for simply supping their water, but that's exactly what she does, thanks to her ability to prime the audience with a little gentle teasing.

Stuck out in the Cabaret Voltaire, Kendall's easy to miss - but she is well worth going out of your way to see.

Review date: 1 Jan 2003
Reviewed by: Steve Bennett

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