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Review: Celya AB at Pleasance Courtyard Beside - Ed Fringe

Review by Carly Fisher


If you’ve never really put much thought into doors, you’re going to want to have a good think on your way into Celya AB’s oft sold out, Second Rodeo, at this year’s Edinburgh fringe. That and other topics such as the size of your local coffee store’s water glasses, your bus route’s driver turn over time, your chocolate order at a closed petrol station’s after hours service window and other daily occurrences that for Celya, produce highly relatable content in an hour’s worth of good storytelling and excellent one liners.


French born, UK based comedian Celya AB admits that much of her career has seen her telling jokes at the expense of the Brits. As an Australian in the front row of this show, I’m certainly down for it but you can see the Brits in the audience breathe a sigh of relief when she says that this will not be the direction of this year’s show. Instead, she has branched out, challenging herself to tackle the biggie in the world of stand up comedy - crowd work.


What ensues is an hour’s worth of stories that prove at times sentimental, at times introspective and at other times, just purely laugh out loud funny. A quick throw away line about an egg carton grabbed my attention from the get go and from there, she totally had me! I will absolutely be trying to share that joke with many that I tell about this show…but not in this review, there are no spoilers here.


Stories of Celya’s childhood, particularly a very funny retelling of what sounds like a traumatic experience with a young crush, give this comedy hour real heart - it’s more than just a roll off of good jokes and one liners. What distracts from this is Celya’s over-reliance on the notes on her hand the night I was in the audience. A natural storyteller, I was surprised that she seemed to feel she needed these notes - I honestly am positive I would have been equally entertained even had she deviated from the script. A small fault for an otherwise strong show but one that continuously pulled me out of the rhythm of the show - once she has this content perfected and her confidence in this show secured, I expect that this show could take her far.


I will definitely see Celya’s future shows as I look forward to seeing her continue to grow as a performer and find her footing even more...and I anticipate I’ll be repeating more than just the egg carton joke when telling others about this performance. All round, a great contribution to this year’s large line up of stand up at the Fringe Festival.

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