Richard Wright Is Just Happy to be Involved

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Opium Bar
Aug 12-25 (14.50)

Material: three-stars.png  Delivery: four-stars.png  Laughs: four-stars.png Room: four-stars.png


Richard Wright comes across on purpose as a lower league comedian, East Fife versus Forfar kinda vibe, but believe me he’s definitely due a transfer to a higher division. Richard & his cuddly boisterousness commands the room from the off, & hardly lets go for the full 35 minutes of his show – I firmly believe this is the perfect length for laughter-emittance at the Fringe. During my slick & snappy soulbearing soiree with Richard, I must admit for the first time in 2019 I acquired the glue-gawp – that look of still & shocked confusion when a comedian goes off onto something particularly wild.

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A consistent semi-finalist in comedy competitions, Richard begins by riffing on his amateur status, stating that his idol was James Cahill, who as an amateur beat the great Ronnie O’Sullivan in the snooker world championships. A big lad, but happy to be so, he also declares how he is not even top-level, can’t-get-out-of-the-house, fat. From here, while the warmth & laughter in the room rises steadily upwards, the material begins its Stygian descent into some rather dodgy, self-deprecation – which straddled the anticoquettish border between poor taste & comedy like a drunkard wobbling home at 3AM. Fortunately, it never went off the precipice, & Richard maintained himself in our affections for the entirety of the show – ‘tho under 16s should not be encouraged inside, despite its early hour.

Another feature are the ‘aaahhss‘ that ripple out from the crowd at the end of every tragic life-fact Richard chooses to disclose. I’ve never quite heard that in a comedy show, but they don’t seem out of place at all, being the melodramatic viola in the string quartet of Wright’s comedy. There is a lot of love in the room when he is bubbling over on full boil, even during the tone-lowering episodes, for luckily he’s made us all fall in love with him by then!

Damian Beeson Bullen

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