Live Review: Imran Yusuf

25 Apr
Komedia:  Thursday, April 21 2011
Gangly and animated, funnyman Imran Yusuf is on a one man mission to shatter racial and ethical divisions.
While always running the risk of coming across as a clown-like preacher, it’s testament to his immense likeability and writing skill that his show is far more entertaining than that.
His Islamic heritage features heavily in the hour and a half set, he frequently quips ‘that one goes down well at the mosque’, after delivering some of his more risqué gags.
But it’s when he cleverly focuses on the universal subjects of identity and belonging that he is best able to make his point.
His section about living in the USA as a teenager does this to hilarious effect. He recounts in detail how he was bullied and teased, not for being a Muslim or Asian, but for being English, something he’d never thought possible.
There are plenty of other subjects he drops into his conversational act, namely romance, family and his career, but the common theme which is cleverly woven through the performance is his goal of uniting people.
Coming from many comedians, this would be patronising. But when Yusuf delivers it in his disarmingly cheeky and pacey style, it’s a joy to watch.

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