Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Rich Hall - Fifty-Cent Words ***

This intimate and enjoyable show sees US comedian Rich Hall reading excerpts from his own writing - both from one published and from another in manuscript form.

Like his stand-up, his writing benefits from impeccably timed, caustic delivery. Here though, in a show that would be equally suited to the Edinburgh Book Festival, Hall's observations and characterisations are given much more room to maneuver than the space normally allowed by spoken-word routines.

Vitriolic then apologetic attacks on Aberdeen; musings on trying to teach a London-based advertising company the finer points of baseball; slices of David Lynch-style Americana - all work, and all are shot through with a vein of dark humour.

Hall's charisma is also evident, and he has a sell-out crowd hanging on his every word - only twice was moaning heard. Once, when he ran out of time and therefore left a half-read tale untold; the other as a result of the corniest joke in the world...but both times, he was quickly and easily forgiven, and I left wanting to read more of his work - not least to find out the ending to that unfinished tale.


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