Don’t be put off by the title. This is not an old man in a stage trying to show his cheap party tricks to an adult (it plays at 23:00 at the Holyrood Tavern, so far too late for kids) and bored audience. It is in fact, a show about Annette Cadabra, the lovely assistant who has to fill in Magic Steve’s shoes when he can’t attend the performance due to ‘a case of the runs’.
Isabel Fay is perfectly self-cast (she has also written the production) as Annette, and the audience are soon drawn to her charms within the first five minutes of the show. Fay’s acting abilities are such that she gets the audience to sing a new cover version of Dirty Dancing’s ‘I had the time of my life’, pose for a group photo (which she then passes around for everyone to see) and shout ‘Abra Kebabra’ (her own little in-joke) every time she pleases, without anyone in the public refusing to.
The show keeps the audience at the edge of the seat, laughing, not because of the magic tricks she attempts to perform (breaking a viewer’s watch has to be the highlight of them all, bringing tears to your eyes from laughter), but by the really random stories she tells, and the way she tells them.
Isabel Fay is a fantastic discovery, and hopefully she will come back to the Fringe festival in years to come. She is a name to remember, and one to look out for in the future. Her act is just pure magic.
Adrian G. Velazquez