Jane Postlethwaite: Made In Cumbria

Jane Postlethwaite’s Made In Cumbria is absolutely hilarious. The audience were in stitches throughout as her characters guided us through a whistle stop tour of the Lake District. She began by giving out name badges to eager audience members as we were told we are on a coach trip up North. When questioning why our nearest and dearest may have sent us on this tour, her quick witted improvisations meant she could handle anything that was thrown at her. Naming a middle aged man Tabitha and referring to him throughout was brilliant and got a chuckle every time.

It was a great premise for a show and the characters were distinct and well executed

An absolute highlight came in the form of children’s writer and illustrator Joy Hope, who was anything but joyful and certainly didn’t inspire any hope. Nonchalant and glaring, she introduced her new series of books, with such award-winning titles as Asbestos Squirrel and Why is Daddy Rabbit Leaving? It was laugh out loud but she didn’t even crack a smile and the morbidity didn’t end there.

Another great skit was Postlethwaite’s appearance as Kirsty Bird, the falconry expert. Smiling falsely while she was clearly dying on the inside, she told of her loneliness up on the moors and her paranoia about the birds being out to get her. The sheer randomness of her remarks got wails of laughter from a very satisfied audience.

The show was incredibly dark at times; a danced tribute at a funeral and poor old Kenneth the dog, to give just two examples. Yet, it was performed in such a way that you couldn’t help but laugh, much akin to giggling in church or a school assembly, you know you shouldn’t but you just can’t help it.

The only part that really let the act down was her portrayal of Stella Nova, NASA’s first Northern astronaut. It had all of the ingredients to be a good section but the jokes didn’t quite live up to expectation. A shame, but only a momentary lapse in an otherwise faultless comedy performance.

It was a great premise for a show and the characters were distinct and well executed. Jane has a clear talent for comedy writing and her ability to deliver jokes in a range of different personas really made this show unique. From sniggering to full blown, laugh out loud hilarity, I would challenge anyone not to find this show funny.

Reviews by Bethan Troakes

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The Blurb

Multi-award finalist Jane Postlethwaite brings her sell-out solo show 'Made in Cumbria' back to Brighton Fringe where she'll introduce you to a selection of dark female characters who welcome you into their unique world. Funny Women Finalist and Squawker Awards Finalist 2015.