Edinburgh 2016 Review: Grainne Maguire: Great People making Great Choices

Grainne Maguire delivers political content without allowing it to feel political, writes


Grainne Maguire hit the headlines earlier this year when she tweeted Irish PM Edna Kenny daily updates of her period in reaction to Irish abortion law, something which achieved traction not just in Ireland but worldwide. When reported out of context, this can sound like a pretty heavy statement; a deadly serious act of protest. When Maguire reports it, however, it’s just funny. The sentiment remains important, but it certainly isn’t delivered as a chore.

Maguire’s set mirrors this; it isn’t empty of political content (in fact there is rather a lot of it), but it rarely feels political. This is doubtless helped by the fact that I tend to agree with her politically, but I don’t think it would be a particularly painful experience for anyone who didn’t. The set doesn’t only look at politics, and the show’s title has a double meaning, looking also towards her personal life and childhood.

The content isn’t all perfect, and the delivery of some of the jokes could improve; Maguire told the same joke twice with about a fifteen minute gap in between, either she was reaching for some kind of structural bit which didn’t land, or she was just accidentally repeating content. I wouldn’t let this put you off seeing her, however, as lapses in quality are few and far between. Above all else, Maguire is a brilliant story teller, who has a very comfortable stage presence, and puts on an entertaining evening show.

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