Sally-Anne Hayward: The Inbetweeny Lady

It’s not why she’s called the Inbetweeny Lady, but Sally-Anne Hayward’s set details what happened to her in between last year’s Edinburgh Fringe and this year’s. It’s very heavily dominated by the death of her father, starting with the phone call that saw her make a rushed exit from 2011 Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Hayward’s openness is likeable and sympathetic. Her show is enjoyable, but not unmissable.

Hayward’s pitch is very conversational. This would be fine, but the set verges a little too often on plain old chat. Of her trip to Australia, for example, she tells us that she really liked the sun there and the relaxed atmosphere. Her comments on drugs - being stoned ‘is ok, but doesn’t really suit my lifestyle, I’ve got things to do’ - are similarly banal. Material like this definitely could have done with a bit of comedic bite.

The more obvious moments of stand up comedy are much more entertaining. Ironically, Hayward is particularly funny when emphasizing the banality of some of the chats you find on Facebook. She also has some nice shticks about grammar pedantry at inappropriate moments and her hunt for alternative employment. The teasing job applications she reads us are amusingly silly.

Some of the gags - including one about a hands free phone - are too predictable to get laughs. Hayward also has the unusual habit of laughing at her own jokes. This isn’t as bad as it sounds, but is a little awkward if the audience isn’t laughing along with her. Even more unusual for a stand up, though, is the fact that Hayward makes us feel she’s really opening up to her audience. Her recollection of the grieving process after her father’s death feels honest and in no way exploitative.

Hayward is perhaps held back by a slight lack of confidence. Nonetheless, her gentle humour is refreshing and easy to watch. Her set is touching, if not especially witty.

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 £1.7m to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
Donate to Acting For Others now

The Blurb

**** (ThreeWeeks). **** (Skinny). Can I eat sweets forever? Why ruin a cake by cooking it? Just two of the questions this award-winning comedian asks. 'Exceptionally funny' (Independent). 'Warm and very funny' (Sarah Millican). www.sallyannehayward.co.uk.

Most Popular See More

Mary Poppins

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets

The Lion King

From £30.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Come From Away

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Matilda the Musical

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Grease the Musical

From £20.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Tina - The Tina Turner Musical

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets