Sparky and sarcastic, Saskia Preston nimbly alights the stage, and much like her salmon pink jacket and orange cords, her stand-up is not to be ignored.
We are invited to her grandmother’s 95th birthday party and meet the extended members of her family, each offering a new avenue of humour. With casual charm, she successfully dabbles between the most complex of subjects, unrestricted to familial longevity and sexual exploration.
A darkness of humour is interchanged with the most bizarre of observations; at what point does a driving snack transition from travelling companion to indictable offence? Where on the sibling pecking order do you sit? Can you still have babies if you don’t have boobs?
Preston’s continuous stream of wordplay and one-liners are much better linked than many others who attempt this style. She allows room for the audience to breathe, a nervous laugh following each punchline, as if giving us a clue. Her sarcastic drawl is refreshingly original, the monotone register working well, somehow.
That being said, some punchlines will go unappreciated, their wit perhaps too subtle for some, and lacking sufficient clarity of delivery. As she draws to a close, the depth of her set becomes apparent, alluding to her struggle with mental health, in a spirit that displaces a comfortable good-naturedness with shocked sympathy.
Despite her humour being bleaker than expected, Preston just sidesteps alienating the audience. Instead her quirky self-consciousness is endearing, making her set a post-lunch treat.