Edinburgh Fringe 2017
“Following her sell-out debut and clocking up 3 million hits on YouTube, musical comedy reprobate Jenny Bede returns to the Fringe with Eggtime; a one-woman rhapsody featuring sexy beats, massive pants and her biological clock”
In Jenny Bede: Eggtime, Jenny’s biological clock is not only ticking away, it is whispering annoyingly into her ear. This is an hour of stand-up comedy and song about life and birth – about having a baby and worrying about getting too old for that great primeval act.
Bede is a 110% high-octane and confident performer. In places, she races through her material and among, the very large doses of audience laughter, a few lines were lost a a bit. The fast-pace is a virtue but the occasional slow-down will aid digestion of her witty, relevant and spot-on material. This is observational comedy, story-telling, sight and verbal gags but mostly autobiography, a bit of audience banter and plenty of life comment.
The songs are very clever indeed, also right on the money in exploring and describing life from Tinder to the bedroom, the strategies of finding the “one” or perhaps just a sperm-supplier and plenty more vignettes and tales. Her delivery style is top drawer – direct, fluent, confident, playful with improvised comment along the way, and that all adds up to a style of delivery that delivers up her humanity in ways that can make you laugh and cry and be grateful and glad you did both in her company. She shares her life stories and links them to ours – the human condition – our own attempts to get through and enjoy life.
This is a very funny hour and the audience loved it. Jenny Bede is counting her eggs as part of Life’s relentless countdown. She shares her journey and questions it all with us. Life is not easy and these big questions need answering – should I have a baby? Should I use Bumble or Tinder?
A bare stage, sheer delivery of something that is more than just intelligent stand-up, the performer connects with her audience without needing the tricks of audience humiliation or of courting the hecklers. She tells it direct. There is a script here and, theatrically, it is tightly written and delivered. She really knows her material and is hugely talented as a performer. Some of the material is pitch perfect but not all set pieces or one-liner side-swipes are equally strong – this is a show that will finesse with a few edits here and there. But even the weaker parts are pretty strong and I was impressed by how consistent this largely is as a comedy-based show. The balance between Life’s genuine challenges and questions and the ability to deliver comedy and make us laugh is impressive.
A fine hour in the company of an excellent comedy performer. Highly recommended.