Pippa Evans is easily packing out Bannermans and there seems to be a sense of anticipation in the air which she instantly capitalises on, establishing a rapport with effervescent glee right from the off.
As can be expected from a show entitled There Are No Guilty Pleasures, Evans’ stand-up is an unabashed celebration of everything that makes us feel good, whether we would be comfortable admitting it in public (polite society might be stretching it) or not, and the crowd is keen to get into the spirit.
With the able assistance of a keyboardist and soapbox drummer, Evans uses song, deft audience interaction, and mouth-wateringly good comic craft to construct an extremely enjoyable hour that zips past in a lovely blur. She is a thoroughly engaging person to be around. She’s whimsical and charming without ever being saccharine. She is sometimes literally hands-on with the audience, and it’s a testament to her skill at putting a room at ease that no one minds a chummy hand on the shoulder or pat on the arm. Indeed, she laments the short cord of a last-minute replacement microphone for her inability to cheerfully harrass hapless punters further back in the room.
A mention in the Guardian under their “top ten jokes of the Fringe so far” is brought up and tossed aside with the disdain it deserves, although her take on veganism was one of the few gags listed to be independently funny when stripped of its context (such articles are always a relentlessly ludicrous exercise).
For those who aren’t the biggest fans of musical comedy, it should be noted Evans peppers her set liberally with songs, and it would have been nice to have a little more of the audience interaction at which she so effortlessly excels. That said, she can’t be blamed for utilising an asset like a talented backing band to the full.
Overall, Pippa Evans could never be remotely described as a guilty pleasure. Rather, she’s an utter gem. Shout it from the rooftops.