Reviewer: Matt Farnham
Michelle McManus can undoubtedly sing, after all, she won Pop Idol back in 2003, which she kindly reminds the audience was by a landslide and with over 8.2 million votes. In her third show at the Edinburgh Fringe, she returns to the tried and tested formula of storytelling mixed with some well‐chosen songs.
The show starts with an amusing video highlight from McManus appearance in TV showScot Squad before she enters the stage clad in a glamorous and sparkling green evening gown. These first moments set the scene for the show.
In Pop Goes the Idol,McManus appears a confident, brash and bitchy celebrity who takes aim at various stars from Music, TV, and Film. The unwavering confidence contrasts marvellously with the strong Glaswegian brogue, as do the stories of dealing with movie stars and sneaking out of the house as a teenager. Michelle McManus is a gifted storyteller who does a great job of keeping the audience in the palm of her hand, and her delivery matched with her over exaggerated facial expressions and perfectly timed deliveryhas the audience frequently in stitches.
McManus has stage presence and her audience interactions, including the way she deals with the good-natured heckling, is handled with such wit and aplomb, you’d think she knew they were coming.
Michelle McManus: Pop Goes the Idol is a cleverly written show that allows her to take aim at celebrity, display her superb storytelling and of course her aforementioned vocal skills, all while portraying an extremely surreal version of herself. This show is a subtle, self-deprecating, and fun look at a Glaswegian girl who can laugh at her own celebrity status and the harsh realities that come with it.
Runs until 28 August 2016