Edinburgh Fringe 2015
“The debut full-length show from Sy Thomas, featuring tragic tales of whimsy, woe and wonder.”
As we take our seats in the Counting House Sy Thomas is bounding around helping everyone find a place and welcoming us in. He’s pumped. This is his first “big solo show” and he wants us all to have a lovely time. What follows is an hour of fun and laughter with someone who has that knack of making you feel like you’re the only person in the room and as if you’ve known him for ages. When we all head off, everyone is chatting together like old friends. It’s hard to believe this is the first hour-long show Thomas has created.
Thomas admits to us that it’s hard to bring an hour to Edinburgh and not spend it talking about failed romantic relationships and being a comedian because, as a middle-class white man, there’s very little hardship in his life to use for material. So, Thomas does discuss his lack of love, his knack of being in the wrong place at the wrong time when accidents strike and his general aversion to risk.
A sequence involving a bicycle and a sausage is great and hilariously anticlimactic. His extended metaphor about helping an injured animal becomes a call back that is brilliantly absurd.
His show is interwoven with surreal videos and other bits of multimedia that offer us an insight into his slightly bonkers mind. One segment about internet dating is fabulously well-observed.
What is great about Thomas is that he is able to communicate his world so magically. It’s a well written and confident hour of comedy. By the end, the various themes are brought together in a mad moment of performance that leaves the audience cheering him along to an unexpected soundtrack. It’s beyond silly and it’s oddly inspiring.
There are moments of naughtiness that might, at times, feel as if they’re heading towards punchlines that are going to be more risqué than he’s prepared us for. However, he tends to pause before he gets there and back-peddles cheekily. The show never feeling anything other than in control.
Sy Thomas is a comic raconteur. He’s faced his fears and he’s put together a great show with some real depth. I suggest you go see it. Do it. Jump in with both feet.