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An Audience with Imran Yusuf 

Note: This review is from 2010

Review by Cara Sandys

Bounding on stage for his first ever solo show at Edinburgh, Imran Yusuf isn't your stereotypical stand-up. For one thing, he's a Muslim, though he barely refers to this fact. He is also full of positive energy, happiness and joie de vivre.

He’s no doom merchant lamenting his lack of luck with the ladies but a man so full of fun that the audience can't fail to not only warm to him, but feel positively fired up by his infectious personality. He has the feelgood factor on tap.

He's no oil painting with his scrawny build, large nose and irregular teeth, but his smile lights up the room and the sound of his laughter peppers his material. Born in Kenya, he moved to England at an early age but was educated in the USA and it is from here that he draws the inspiration for most of his material.

His stories of going to school it the States were told in faultless American accents and delighted the bunch of Americans in the audience who, by coincidence, came from the same town.

The comedy drew on his experience of being ridiculed by the Americans for his English accent, but his cultural comparisons are seen from a totally different perspective as he subverts the traditional UK-USA dissonance.

By not focussing on the obvious racial stereotypes, he wins over the entire audience. His happy, positive personality leaves them feeling uplifted, energised and privileged to have had An Audience With Imran Yusuf.

Review date: 17 Aug 2010
Reviewed by: Cara Sandys

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