Words: Calum Baxter
At the age of 28, André has performed in over 25 countries over 4 continents. After performing at the Los Angeles Comedy Store, Grammy award winning comedian, Jim Gaffigan invited him on tour with him in André’s native Portugal. Since then, André has provided tour support for Russell Peters and Alan Carr. Additionally, André is the creator and co-star of the third most popular podcast in Portugal, Comedy Therapy, a live format that brings together comedy and mental health.
In his Edinburgh Fringe debut hour, André reflects on the turbulent journey to achieving his dream of becoming a professional stand-up comedian. His stand-up set offers a unique perspective on his experiences as an immigrant; initially trying to make it as a stand-up comedian in the USA and then moving to London to pursue his dream. André’s unwavering optimism and relentless determination is clear, particularly in the face of insurmountable obstacles. His life story has to be heard to be believed. I won’t divulge any more so I don’t spoil such an inimitable show.
Dubbing himself ‘The Portuguese Papi’, André comes across as a very sincere and amiable individual, with the audience in Bunker Two hanging on every word. Some of the best punchlines are delivered through impressive crowd work. What surprised me particularly was how fleshed out his on-stage persona is for a debut Fringe performance. This life-affirming show is about trusting in your own abilities and never giving up on your dreams.
André de Freitas: What If
Pleasance Courtyard, Bunker Two