Ford and Akram: Bamp!


Rating ****

15.15-16.15, Pleasance Courtyard

Louise Ford and Yasmine Akram have a sense of warmth about them that means you can’t help but like them. This is very much one of the appeals of going to see their show. Their show begins with the impending death of Louise’s grandmother who, in her dying breath, gives Louise the chance to prove herself and become head of the family by popularising the word ‘bamp’. Should she fail, this honour will be bestowed upon the devilish Paul the shoe (who, quite literally is a trainer); high stakes indeed.

And so begins a series of sketches charting their aims to ‘get the word out there,’ From young ethnics (their words, not mine) whose local haunt is Clinton Cards, to BNP members, their word is used, mis-used and rather abused until it appears to mean both everything and nothing. The storyline is improbable, plays to some interestingly conceived stereotypes and is almost entirely illogical, but this really does not matter. It is Ford and Akram’s sensitive and charismatic delivery of this often far-fetched material which proves their worth as comediennes and makes their material seem far from far-fetched after all.

There is some gentle audience interaction which led to some necessary improvisation that was handled with moments of comedy genius: ‘So, Jim (I’ll call him Jim, though this wasn’t his name), what do you look for in a woman?’ ‘I don’t. I’m gay.’ being a particularly brilliant moment. The audience were laughing rapturously throughout, as was I, and as such, this show comes with a four bamp (meaning star) recommendation.


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