There really isn’t any comedian like Michael Brunström, or if there is I’ve never seen one and over the past three decades I’ve seen thousands (admittedly many hundreds of those were on the open mic circuit, but hey, it still counts as there are some superb comics on it). I only saw him live for the first time last year too when he performed his The Great Fire Of London show but he instantly became one of my favourite comedians and the gig itself made it in to my list of the ten best I’ve ever been fortunate to witness.
So when I heard he was doing his latest show I bought tickets the moment it was announced, and had been eagerly awaiting the chance to see it. It didn’t disappoint either, in it’s current state it’s not quite as good as The Great Fire Of London but it’s bloody close, and would make it in to my twenty favourite comedy shows list with ease. Michael commented during the show that one segment may be dropped when it comes to it’s Edinburgh run too, suggesting this it’s still being worked upon, but either way it’s a stunning piece of comedy and something I absolutely adored.
Describing the show in depth would spoil the effect for anyone planning to see it (which should be every single person who reads this as it really is that great) so I’ll keep this vague, but the framing device is that Michael wants to win gold at the Olympics and so partakes in a number of different sports – but bar a couple of well known events very few of them are the kind of thing you’ll see at the Olympics, though after tonight’s gig I’m convinced they should all be included.
It’s a completely unpredictable work and that’s partially why it’s so special, you never know what he’ll offer up next, be it a monologue about the event (or something else entirely), an unusual piece of audience interaction, or a physical display involving various props and devices that never fail to delight. And another joyful element of his comedy is the audience participation, but he’s the kind of comedian who never picks on his audience or makes them do anything they may not want to do, he just makes us all part of the show and reacts and builds on what the audience does or says. This makes him pretty unique in my mind, and every performance will be a little different due to this, but I’m absolutely convinced that each will be just as enjoyable if not more so than what I was lucky enough to see tonight.
A show so fantastic that I definitely plan to catch it again, I have no doubt in my mind it’ll be one of the very best things the Edinburgh Festival has to offer, and if it doesn’t win Brunström awards then the world is even crueller and unfair than I already suspect it to be. One of the funniest men alive, I’m aware that this review is full of what might seem like hyperbole but it’s genuinely not, Brunström’s comedy is the art form at it’s very best and will make you laugh until it hurts so much you might fear you’ll need a hospital visit after witnessing it.
Michael’s Official Site.