Ingrid Oliver: Speech!
- Claire Sawers
- 18 August 2017
This article is from 2017
Excellent mimicry aids a fine character act affair
Ingrid Oliver has been to the Fringe before in the sketch double act, Watson & Oliver, but this is her first solo show. Her character comedy introduces many well fleshed-out folks: there's a furious, right-wing radio presenter dropping 'truth-bombs' but seething at her total inability to cause a Twitterstorm; a German translator sobbing her way through a break-up while live translating via a headset (nice use of fluent German there, Oliver), and the angry president of a Leeds student union trying to enforce a 'no dissent' policy among her leftie ideals.
Oliver is an excellent mimic, and gets the tics and timing spot on with her impressions (as aped in a meta-sketch about a terrible impersonator trying to teach comedy classes), but she also has a message. Trying to get her head round current politics as a sort of ongoing subplot to the hour, she uses the bits in between to show TV footage of Jeremy Corbyn from the 80s, or Tony Blair grinning in front of a sea of Union Jacks. Her 'middle way' conclusion about non-binary thinking and the danger of everyone believing they're the good guy feels a bit wobbly, but her talent for parroting people is solid.
Pleasance Courtyard, until 27 Aug, 4.30pm, £7–£9 (£6–£8).