Mark Dolan - You're Awesome!

A public-school Ed Byrne in appearance with the patter of a middle-aged Jack Whitehall, Mark Dolan’s You’re Awesome is a gentle, beguiling hour. The first half of the show treads a familiar path, raising gentle chuckles as Dolan unerringly hits the buttons of the opening night Fringe crowd: supermarket 'finest' ranges; domestic arguments; Alex Salmond’s erotic eyes.

His routine – earnest in places, sometimes conspiratorial – is reminiscent of an evening in the pub with your funniest friend: not the loud one, or the showy one, or the regretted former housemate in his beloved pink leather trousers; but the warm, witty, worldly-wise companion who makes an evening zip by in an instant.

But Dolan is at his best off-the-cuff, sparring with the audience. His softly-spoken evisceration of a student comedy troupe in the front row allowed him briefly to bare his comedic teeth and his recovery from the elephant trap of referring to a female audience member as 'he' was a masterpiece in sangfroid. By his own admission, Dolan has written forty minutes’ worth of material for his hour’s slot: the quick-wittedness he displays in these unscripted portions raise the show to greater heights.

While one always expects the unexpected amidst the stramash of the Fringe, it’s a rum thing to have the first show of your Edinburgh run cut short by an audience member collapsing on stage. To Dolan's credit, he took even this in his stride, coming to the aid of the stricken before swiftly wrapping up his impressive show. Subtle, understated and unmistakably a master of his craft, Dolan’s return to the stage can be safely filed in his binder of Things That Are Awesome.

Since you’re here…

… we have a small favour to ask. We don't want your money to support a hack's bar bill at Abattoir, but if you have a pound or two spare, we really encourage you to support a good cause. If this review has either helped you discover a gem or avoid a turkey, consider doing some good that will really make a difference.

You can donate to the charity of your choice, but if you're looking for inspiration, there are three charities we really like.

Mama Biashara
Kate Copstick’s charity, Mama Biashara, works with the poorest and most marginalised people in Kenya. They give grants to set up small, sustainable businesses that bring financial independence and security. That five quid you spend on a large glass of House White? They can save someone’s life with that. And the money for a pair of Air Jordans? Will take four women and their fifteen children away from a man who is raping them and into a new life with a moneymaking business for Mum and happiness for the kids.
Donate to Mama Biashara now

Theatre MAD
The Make A Difference Trust fights HIV & AIDS one stage at a time. Their UK and International grant-making strategy is based on five criteria that raise awareness, educate, and provide care and support for the most vulnerable in society. A host of fundraising events, including Bucket Collections, Late Night Cabarets, West End Eurovision, West End Bares and A West End Christmas continue to raise funds for projects both in the UK and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Donate to Theatre MAD now

Acting For Others
Acting for Others provides financial and emotional support to all theatre workers in times of need through the 14 member charities. During the COVID-19 crisis Acting for Others have raised over £600,000 to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
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Performances

The Blurb

Mark Dolan's glass is half full as he celebrates the awesome things in life ... ice cream, sunsets, and finding out that your mental girlfriend isn't pregnant. ‘Consistently funny’ (Independent). ‘Joyfully naughty’ (Chortle.co.uk).

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