Sarah Callaghan: Elephant

Twenty-three-year-old Sarah Callaghan lives at home with her mum – and for this hour we are transported to her three-by-five-metre bedroom in her home in working-class London.

I’d be astonished if she isn’t performing stand-up on TV within the year.

In a slightly downbeat start to the show she explains how hard she finds it to be positive. Despite being fiercely ambitious she’s yet to make her name as a comic, and sets out to explore the reasons why. Perhaps she has been too busy collecting trainers? Or staring at the pictures on her bedroom wall? And it’s easy to dream of flying away if your house is on the Heathrow flight path.

In love and in work she has not been short of offers. Callaghan tells us that she has turned down acting in commercials and that she won’t accept a quick route to celebrity. Stand-up comedy is what she wants to do. But for such an obdurate comic she can be surprisingly self-deprecating. Callaghan is not afraid to make herself the butt of the joke. Some of the strongest material is when she is talking about her love life, and her long-suffering boyfriend.

The Fringe is replete with fake working-class voices from the mouths of well-educated character comedians. Sarah Callaghan may be a trained actor, but her voice, her experiences, her life at home in her bedroom are all real. She’s no fake. My only quibble is that sometimes she comes across as playing a character, rather than being herself. She is at her best when she relaxes and her authentic voice shines through.

She’s learned her trade on the comedy circuit, put in the stage time and got really, really good. Callaghan oozes confidence. This supremely talented comic is ready for the next step. I’d be astonished if she isn’t performing stand-up on TV within the year. 

Reviews by Martin Walker

Pleasance Dome

Sarah Callaghan: 24

★★★
Assembly George Square Theatre

The Piff the Magic Dragon Show

★★★★
Pleasance Courtyard

Radio Active

★★
Assembly Roxy

Andrew Lawrence: The Hate Speech Tour

★★★★★
Assembly George Square Studios

Patrick Kielty: Help

Performances

Location

The Blurb

Sarah Callaghan feels trapped. In her highly anticipated debut hour, this refreshingly honest rising star discusses small worlds and trying to break free. Expect sharp observations from this raw, gutsy new talent. 'No-nonsense rising star' (Time Out – Class of 2014). Up the Creek One to Watch winner and Leicester Square New Act of the Year finalist 2013. As seen on Virtually Famous (E4). 'Magnificent performance ... an absolute natural, Callaghan is definitely one to catch' (Fest). 'Sarah Callaghan is the real deal, and brings an unaffected authenticity to her set' (Chortle.co.uk). 'Clever and politically savvy' (BroadwayBaby.com).