Potatohead at the Camden People’s Theatre (Camden Fringe)

Freddie Hayes in Potatohead at Camden People’s Theatre running until 22nd August 2021 as part of the Camden Fringe Festival 2021

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Charlotte, a potato, wants to make a deal with the devil so that she can become a famous performer. Yes this is Doctor Faustus but with spuds. Potatohead is as gloriously bonkers as it sounds. Freddie Hayes, our solo performer and Spud puppeteer fully commits to her endeavour with an endearing self-awareness of just how ridiculous it all is. This is an openly silly show, filled with cultural references, audience participation, video montages, potatoes, puns and puppets.

Despite being both an introvert and sober, Hayes had me swaying, singing and interacting, which is no mean feat. There is something delightful in the level of detail evident throughout. The 7 Deadly Sins disco/puppet show is both hilarious and beautifully crafted. Charlotte is herself a lovely invention. I was rooting (punning is dangerously contagious) for this intrepid spud.

Hayes is an engaging performer, and Potatohead makes for a very entertaining and silly night of theatre. It lost me a little after the revelation of who Satan is, which is effectively foreshadowed and funny at point of reveal, but the battle for Charlotte’s soul doesn’t have the deceptive cleverness of the rest of the show. Because that is the thing with Hayes’ show, it is totally silly but also sneakily smart.

The unrepentant silliness of Potatohead would be best enjoyed with friends. It runs at the Camden People’s Theatre until Sunday 22nd August as part of the Camden Fringe Festival.

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