By the time Lady Cariad – an out-of-work actor with a unique approach to audtions – has finished introducing her ‘guests’, we have witnessed yet another Fringe variety performance – by some of the most inept, socially-retarded acts in Edinburgh this year.
Comic characters must be flawed to be effective, and Cariad Lloyd’s motley collection are no different. So here we are treated to visits from misguided cult members, reluctant magician’s assistants and rubbish French rappers and parkour ‘experts’.
Each sketch demonstrates Cariad’s versatility as a comic performer: her characterisation skills shine through her sharp and confident delivery, with writing which hits the funny bone more often than not.
Two of her characters stand out and demonstrate Cariad’s breadth of skills: Cockney Sam, the misogynist psychopath from East London with a repertoire of knees-up songs about murder and sexual deviancy; and – at very much the other end of the scale – Andrew, the 7-year-old stand-up comic, whose fumbling naivety wins over the audience as he leads us through his rather unique take on the Russian Revolution.
With well-balanced pacing and little in the way of filler, Cariad Lloyd’s show at the Free Fringe is an impressive and polished hour of comedy which ranges from the charming to the unsettling; and this is very likely to be the last time you’ll have the chance to meet Lady Cariad’s characters without having to pay for the privilege.
Lady Cariad’s Characters runs until Aug 27 (not 17) at 15:55 at the Voodoo Rooms. More details here.