Born in Holywood, Northern Ireland, Shane Todd's set plays off a persona as being shy, awkward and even provincial - as a hopeful young man with the ambition of becoming famous enough to turn on his town's Christmas lights, and so he ventures to Hollywood to 'make it'. He has a charismatically charming cheeky kind of 'joker' humour, but isn't afraid to push the audience with more drastic or shocking material either.
Telling the story of his own fame and journey, his humour is perfectly pitched - light hearted and relatable enough, with just a pinch of dark humour to balance out. Even his improvisation is brilliant, when a show from next door is playing 'Let it go' so loud that we can hear, he stops to confess that he can't compete with the 'best song of all time', but ends up playing off their audience applause, a joke that works well even through the rest of the show.
Perhaps it is part of the persona which he put forwards on stage but he is self-deprecating, and even apologetic, feeding into this image of an awkward up-and-coming comedian. However, on occasion, this hinders rather than helps his comedy - he would be better off making use of silences and letting some jokes just rest after they hit the mark. However, Todd's ability to narrativise his material helps to make this more like a full story rather than simply a series of punchlines.
Todd's comedy is fun and light-hearted and he has nailed the art of telling his story. He is definitely one to watch out for so don't miss the chance to see him at the Fringe!
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Shane Todd: From Holywood to Hollywood is at the Gilded Balloon at 22:15. Tickets and more information available on the EdFringe website.