Flo & Joan: Before the Screaming Starts (4 stars)

Flo & Joan: Before the Screaming Starts

A sophisticated musical turn from the Dempsey siblings

Flo & Joan have upgraded: they've brought a drum kit with them this year, so the egg shaker can now be thrown contemptuously to the ground. Their overall attitude has also had a facelift, as this show is about confidence, they inform the packed Piccolo tent. Indeed, their opening number lists all the brazen things they do, like making their own natural deodorant and riding a horse side-saddle down a highway.

You could believe it all too, as the siblings sing and riff off one another with ease. They also take the time to poke fun at the darker manifestations of confidence (like anti-vaxxers and fake news), but for the Dempsey sisters, this self-belief is clearly well-earned as Before the Screaming Starts is their most sophisticated show yet. Not only are the songs as strong as ever, surreal jokes are oh-so casually interwoven throughout the show, such as their desire to see Albus Dumbledore and Engelbert Humperdinck get married, and the recurrence of a fairy-tale maiden who tells people to 'fuck off'.

This is the perfect blend of caustic wit and sheer nonsense, though as the sisters reflect upon their viewing of the recent Bros documentary, they realise that one day their partnership too will end. Either they'll fall out à la the Goss twins, or one of them will die. Let's hope neither outcome comes to pass anytime soon, and that we'll have Flo & Joan in our lives for a while yet.

Assembly George Square Gardens, until 25 Aug, 6pm, £12–£13 (£11–£12).

Flo & Joan: Before the Screaming Starts

  • 4 stars

Avalon Promotions In January, musical comedy sisters Flo & Joan watched the Bros documentary and saw a glimpse into their future; a lot of dog portraits and male pattern baldness. Anyway, following a sell-out run in 2018, they have a new hour of their dark and waggish songs to parade about the place. Best Music and…

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