Women of an Uncertain Age Gilded Balloon

This is the only show I have seen this year where the venue had an air conditioning unit blasting out lovely cold air. Most venues have been meltingly hot but the organisers have obviously figured out the likely demographic of this show and catered for us women of a certain age. However, having said that, we grumpy old women are never satisfied and the noise of the aircon did distract sometimes from the quieter bits of the show. There aren’t a lot of quiet moments – it is a series of very funny sketches celebrating and poking fun at a range of female stereotypes and situations.

The two performers, Flip Webster and Maggie Bourgein, play a vast array of characters. The two posh middle aged women meeting over a very liquid lunch, one states her preference for F and M rather than S and M “Fortnum’s darling”, she is thinking of having “some work done” Loft conversion? No, a boob job. The two female cops arriving at a murder scene who, on seeing the mess left by the corpse, start discussing the best product for getting bloodstains out of carpets. The voluptuous Italian cook and her crone of a Mamma. The daughter visiting her elderly mother who, like Catherine Tate’s incorrigibly randy granny, “still has juices you know”. The man she pulled up on stage to prove he was game for a laugh. There were only a couple of men in the audience but I’m sure they enjoyed it just as much as all the women there. There were a few gasps of shock at some of the ruder bits which makes me think some of the audience must lead very sheltered lives as there is nothing particularly groundbreaking here, it is all pretty familiar stuff.

Some bits didn’t work as well as others but in the main it was laugh out loud funny. The “Cos I’m a Great Granny” song, sung to the well-known Peggy Lee song “I’m a Woman” was hilarious. I would highly recommend this show, particularly to groups of women of a particular age – you will find lots to relate to and to laugh at.

Irene Brownlee