Wednesday, August 18, 2010

"Cruel To Be Kind" - EDINBURGH FESTIVALS Magazine 4 Star Review...

"Jo Caulfield - Cruel To Be Kind" - 4 Stars (from EDINBURGH FESTIVALS Magazine)
Wednesday 18 August by Michelle Wards

Being cruel can produce some brilliant material for comedy. Jo Caulfield knows this and uses it to the best of her bitchy advantage in this vicious hour of entertaining cynicism. Her intention is not to hurt people, however, but simply to prepare them for the harsh realities of life and love.

A quiz about the geography of her audience, with jokes about Ireland, Yorkshire and Aberdeen, engages the room in laughter from the beginning. Tales of drinking with comedians and shopping with her husband show her talent for storytelling and performance. When she talks you can't help but laugh at the way she cuttingly insults pretty much everyone she has ever met and even those she hasn't.

There is some great material in the set, from her tale of eating dinner with strangers to the inappropriateness of perfume models. Some of the jokes and stories sound familiar, but like all the best ones you don't mind hearing them again, especially from such an entertaining personality. Caulfield's talent for punchlines is displayed during her retelling of a children's fairytale and in the finale of the show, when she discusses where people lost their virginity.

This is an hour of blistering fun that is over too soon. Oh, and she gives away free beer to some of the audience at the end, just to make sure we know that her reputation as an evil cow is only in the name of comedy.

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