Thursday, 24 September 2009

A Beginner's Guide to Acting English

Comedian Shappi Khorsandi was promoting her new book at Stratford Circus yesterday evening and as always, organisers Newham Bookshop drew a big crowd.

Having listened to her Radio 4 series ‘Shappi Talk’, I’ve started to think Khorsandi has become a rather one-dimensional comic, relying on a standard of tired ‘aren’t foreigners funny’ material that now seems incredibly old-fashioned. But her memoir about leaving Iran and growing up in England because her father, a writer, had mocked first the Shah and later Ayatollah Khomeini sounds really good, a sometimes sad and moving tale. I look forward to reading it, but unfortunately last night it was totally under-sold, with Shappi completely failing to engage with the people who came to listen to her read extracts from her story. She rambled, seemed unprepared and lost without the prop of her stand-up routine and managed a first for a Newham Bookshop event: not even one question from the audience. At times it was painful to watch.

The next bookshop event I’m attending is Tony Benn speaking about his new book “A Letter to my Grandchildren”, which is on 14 October. Somehow, I expect the audience questions will come thick and fast.

1 Comment:

HarpyMarx said...

Regarding the Benn event hope he is ok heard he hasn't been well since an operation.

The Left relies on Benn so much.....

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