A wild romp through dysfunctional relationships, politics and life as a millennial
Max, the Jewish half of this energetic black comedy, bounds on stage, somewhat startling a middle-aged woman in the front row. He immediately launches into a delightfully sardonic and uplifting funk-inspired opening number about being Jewish, complete with rhyming couplets and flashing lights. It sets the tone for a joyously anarchic (and sweaty) hour, in which romantic comedy is taken to an enjoyably dark level.
Saul Boyer, the 26-year-old actor who makes up half the writing team with BBC producer Poppy Damon, plays Max, a Jewish stand-up comedian. Max is in an on-off relationship with the wacky TJ (played by 25-year-old Edie Newman), a performance artist who does Freudian burlesque as a manatee and is described by Max as a "shiksa goddess, someone my family could hate". They met through Momentum, the left-wing campaign group, and now live together in a flat that's divided into two halves: Israel and Palestine.
Director Kennedy Bloomer injects vim and vigour into the performance, produced by Zoe Weldon, in which the tiny stage is utilised to its fullest: with a folding screen and a chaise longue that has been cleverly divided into two parts.
We follow the couple's amphetamine-fuelled, bickering-rich alliance through therapy, a friend's wedding, Max's grandma's funeral and periodic romping about. It's a fabulously vibrant, unflinching send-up of our tribe that revels in the dark corners of middle-class British Judaism and has you in its grip right until the end.
By Lee Levitt
Photos by Samual Kirkman
Jew…ish runs until Monday 26 August (exc. 12 & 20 Aug). 1.30pm. £9.50/£10.50, £8.50/£9.50 concs. Gilded Balloon Teviot, Edinburgh, EH8 9AJ. www.edfringe.com