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Louise Young: Feral

Words: Elodie Marriott

Louise Young’s set is like meeting up with your wildest friend who captivates with tales of her past self’s mayhem and recklessness, provoking hard laughter, while also making you feel very glad it wasn’t you. But she’s all better now, she promises. And she’s ready to tell us all about it.

Starting by apologising for her ‘horrific’ accent, Young jokes about being a Geordie, and glides naturally through topics of class, race, and sexuality, with assured self-awareness. Some jokes are given swiftly, and laughter follows just as quick. Yet Young excels in jokes with longer pay-offs that begin as impassioned opinions on serious issues like mental health services, and end with a deadpan delivery of a stunning punchline. 

She draws the audience in with her confessional tones, inducing gasps and waves of laughter. She knows the stories sound unbelievable, but her sheepish expression after telling them leaves no doubt of their authenticity. The set is so personal and vulnerable, yet Young is unafraid, even cheekily chiding noisy audience members by asking for some of their snacks.

Giggling along with the audience, it’s clear Louise Young is having fun. We are selfishly glad that Young was once off-the-rails and now back on, as without, we wouldn’t get to experience her set which is aptly named Feral.

Louise Young: Feral
Pleasance Courtyard, Bunker One
8-13, 15-27 Aug


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