Character comedy of the highest order
This article is from 2008.
Joanna Neary starts her show off in edgy fashion. She's an absolute bag of nerves and there's a real danger that this ropey opening might be translating itself to her audience. But fear not, it's just one of the many beautifully crafted characters that she has in store for a crowd who are as charmed at the end as they were panicky at the beginning.
Whether Neary (who TV watchers might recognise from series two of the Johnny Vegas stoner show Ideal) is being a cat or a dolphin, impersonating celebrity chefs or transforming herself into bonkers old Björk singing about the credit crunch, each scene is infused with intricate details, layered by pinpoint writing and heightened with a highly polished performance. In a festival rife with frustratingly average character comics (both male and female), you should do yourself a favour and have a peek into Joanna Neary's Magic Hole.
Assembly Rooms, 623 3030, until 24 Aug, 5pm, £9.50–£10.50 (£8.50–£9.50).