Lynne Jassem: From Como To Homo
A mime, character, song and dance treat
This article is from 2016.
You don't often get the chance to see a woman in her 70s throwing herself into a synchronised tap routine with her male alter ego. So, grasp it while you can. Lynne Jassem's stage career began on Perry Como's Supper Club at the age of eight, back in 1957. From the moment we're greeted with a film extolling the 'clean aftertaste' of Chesterfield cigarettes (that TV show's sponsor), we're in another world, and Jassem succeeds in painting her recollections vividly through evocative mime, characters, songs and dance.
A real old-school trouper, she can do it all, including an exploration of her sexual awakening and a misidentified false start on puberty that almost killed her. It seems impossible that anyone could still have so much venom for her childhood rival Patty Duke, but Jassem brings it all to life; her near-matricidal passion inspired by having to share the first girl she loved is also evocatively told. This comic-theatre show is the sort of act that might have fitted better in the cabaret section of the Fringe programme, but it certainly earns its place in comedy with the huge laugh inspired by a college doctor's response to her mother's anxious enquiries.
Sweet Grassmarket, until 28 Aug (not 22 & 23), 2.15pm, £8 (£6).