Craig Campbell's Thrilling Mic Hunt (4 stars)

This article is from 2013

Craig Campbell's Thrilling Mic Hunt

Brilliant Canadian raconteur treats us to jovial observational anecdotes at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival

‘Me falling off a log – you can’t get more Canadian than that,’ says Craig Campbell of an ill-fated sea kayaking trip, just one of many similarly cursed escapades he relates in a roundly entertaining hour of jovial observational anecdotes. And it’s true that he fits a certain stereotypical portrait of the rough-edged, outdoorsy, lumberjack character, burly and wild-haired and mildly derogatory of Americans.

A bear of a man with no hesitation in making himself look silly, Campbell is eminently likeable and an old master (he’s been coming to the Fringe – and accidentally offending Scots – since 1995) at building a rapport with the audience, managing to work crowd contributions seamlessly into a freewheeling narrative about all the injuries he’s sustained during various outdoor adventures. Totally unfazed by the random outbursts of a George Street weekend crowd, he brings the funny to these interactions in a kindly but pointed way hardly justified by their inebriated contributions.

When a man can talk about the discovery of his favourite cheese for quarter of an hour and keep you chuckling throughout, it’s clear his enthusiasm is infectious – Craig Campbell is that sort of raconteur and his Thrilling Mic Hunt a treat.

Assembly Rooms, 0844 693 3008, until 25 Aug (not 12), 8.45pm, £10 (£9)

Craig Campbell on Russell Howard's Good News

Craig Campbell: Thrilling Mic Hunt

Enthusiastic storytelling and sharp wit from the Canadian stand-up.