Steve Hall: Zebra (4 stars)

This article is from 2015

Steve Hall: Zebra

An often hysterical portrait of family life

The former We Are Klang guy is never going to enjoy the type of critical adoration that other comics with less of a ‘boring face and boring voice’ (his words) will experience. Ground-breaking stand-up is simply not going to be the thing you immediately associate with Steve Hall. But for sheer unadulterated fun this Fringe, it’s hard to think of too many comedians who will offer the same glee which Zebra throws up on a number of occasions.

Hall is on very fine form with an hour about avoiding being a terrible father and how to stay in control of your own destiny so that the memories you shape for yourself and your loved ones are shaped by you. Starting off by discussing a child in his family who he has, shall we say, little time for, Hall immediately lays out his plan for having low sugary sentiment within a show which could easily veer into the mawkish.

There is one segment about a wholly cringeworthy incident in Aberdeen while Hall was supporting Russell Howard which cropped up during his last Fringe affair in 2011, but that gripe aside, he provides a more than serviceable set largely about his baby daughter. But the true kicker is left for the final section with his tales of family portraits going horribly awry. It’s a lengthy climax that’s nothing short of hysterical.

The Stand 6, 558 7272, until 30 Aug, 6.35pm, £8 (£7).

Steve Hall: Zebra

  • 4 stars

Steve Hall 'Hilarious … a wonderful set of stand-up vignettes’ (Guardian). ‘His phrasing is joyous and choice of words close to poetic … tales of hilarious woe’ (Metro). ‘A lovely, friendly, thoroughly entertaining show’ ( The best-educated third of beloved Fringe losers We Are Klang, and one of the main…