Holly Morgan @ Gilded Balloon Teviot
Holly Morgan's Edinburgh Fringe show is a musical journey through time, centred on witches both real and honorary
By her own admission, Holly Morgan is a witch – we all are. The message of Holly Morgan: Is a Witch. Get Her! is clear; celebrate being different as we are all a little weird, and importantly that’s OK. It is a musical journey through time about witches, both real and honorary.
Bette Midler is the first to receive a spot-on impression from Morgan, channeling Midler's Hocus Pocus character with ease. Delving into the history of witches, Morgan strips back the skin-deep facade of the archetype in what amounts to a musical TED Talk with the added bonus of a honeymoon slideshow. Begrudging familiar and real-life husband Tom Moore accompanies Morgan, dressed head to toe in a black cat leotard. There is a genuine interest in the audience to learn about the subject, though Morgan doesn't always manage to turn this raw enthusiasm into laughs.
Shunned as a child by fellow school pupils, Morgan slut-shames an old classmate throughout the show, ultimately using the experience to show how woman are forced to compete. Moments like these are the finer parts of Morgan's hour. A trip to the Solomon Islands is brushed over, proving to be not the most useful of research ventures (hopefully a better honeymoon for the pair), but Morgan's mimicry on the mic is fantastic; her impressions never failing to get a ‘oh my god’ reaction. It is a cornerstone of Morgan’s act that she heavily falls back on throughout the hour, but a triumphant medly of Girls Just Want To Have Fun, sung in the styles of a dozen different artists, is nonetheless amazing.
Witchcraft is a weighty topic that feels important in a political climate trying to marginalise strong outspoken women, although the last chunk of the show dedicated to Trump and his obsession with ‘the witch hunt’ doesn’t hit home as hard as one would hope. Instead, it feels like a section that would have worked best by focusing on current, hounded figures like Hillary Clinton.
Holly Morgan: Is a Witch. Get Her!, Gilded Balloon Teviot (Billiard Room), until 26 Aug, 10pm, £9.50-11.50