★ ★ ★ ★ ★
This year, Jayde Adams returns to the Fringe with her fourth Edinburgh hour, Jayde Adams Is Jayded.
After her sister died, Jayde received a wake-up call and decided to become a comedian. How? By calling herself one. When people would ask her what she did, she'd say "Comedian" and much to her amazement she started getting booked for gigs!
She opens the show sat on a bench (much like her poster), with a box of chocolates, reciting the entire script of Forrest Gump. But she does stop herself. That's not what the show is about, it's only an hour and that would take 4 and half hours, far longer than the film itself. She knows this because she's done it, in a warehouse in East London where everyone was off their face on drugs.
If you're interested, she also knows the full scripts to Edward Scissorhands and The Phantom of the Opera - both of which may or may not feature at some point during the show. OK, I'll level with you, it does, and Jayde's solo duet from The Phantom of the Opera needs to be seen to be believed. A work of genius.
During the show, Jayde talks about loneliness and her struggle to make friends, which is surprising because watching the way the audience reacted to her show, it seems as though Jayde is making hundreds of friends a week here at the festival.
Either way, she definitely makes one new friend per show as she pulls an unsuspecting member of the audience up on stage and asks them a series of questions before declaring themselves best friends. A series of photos taken by another audience member cements their friendship and these can be found on Jayde's Twitter account after the show.
Awkward? Perhaps, but not for Jayde, as the audience absolutely adore her. And how could you not? She's hugely likeable, full of charisma and very very funny.
It's not just the big gags that make her audience laugh, when one of her braces comes away, they laugh, when her glasses drop down her face, they laugh and when she gives the odd sideways glance, they laugh.
Jayde has impeccable comic timing as well as an incredible singing voice so if the comedy goes tits up (which I doubt it will) I expect the West End to come a-knocking. She is a natural performer, a phenomenal talent and also has the ability to make an audience laugh and cry.
As Jayde got all emotional ahead of her final song, I too felt myself tearing up as I'd been so invested in her story for the best part of an hour that I didn't want Jayde to suffer emotionally. I also didn't want the show to end on a downer, which it didn't of course because Jayde is great at lifting things back up again.
Her parents who were in the audience during the performance I watched, must have been so proud. Genuinely.