Mat Ricardo: Showman (3 stars)

This article is from 2013

Mat Ricardo: Showman

An potent act aided by a showbiz-slick performance

Mat Ricardo has done his time and served an apprenticeship in street clowning and reaching the Fringe stage, he has an act that is potent aided by a performance that is showbiz-slick. It’s hard not to fault a magic act (in this case, a juggler) if they get everything right, but given that Ricardo fluffs a couple of moves, this has to be reflected in the star rating.

Some of his antics though are truly jaw dropping, and he teases us along the way with anticipation of some dark and dangerous deeds involving bowling balls and his neck, and some cordless kitchen blades and his fingers. His storytelling is proficient too, as he delves into the history of juggling, spooking us all with tales of tricks going horribly, fatally wrong.

What he is capable of doing with some wine glasses, billiard cues and cigar boxes is eye-wateringly good and there’s a nice choice of soundtrack (Tom Waits, Johnny Cash) to some of the more riveting work, too.

Pleasance Dome, 556 6550, until 25 Aug, 6.50pm, £9–£9.50 (£8–£8.50).

Mat Ricardo: Showman

  • 3 stars

Lee Martin for Gag Reflex. Winner of Best Speciality Act at the London Cabaret Awards, and as seen on the Jonathan Ross Show, 'the Derren Brown of juggling' ( brings a show packed full of big laughs, serious skills and breathtaking spectacle. Ages 14+.