I will preface this with a IEFA (Insufferable Edinburgh Fringe Attendee) warning. Because yes, I saw Suzi at Fringe, and maybe it was the £6 pints or just the heady artistic fog in the air, but it was the best comedy gig I have ever been to.
34 year old Portsmouth born and raised Suzi Ruffell rose up through the comedy ranks gaining the infamous Chortle Best Breakthrough award in 2017, has featured on Live at The Apollo and a handful of well known panel shows. She has an excellent way of discussing her childhood, her schooling, her dyslexia and her sexuality that captures each audience member. She most recently won the best club comic at the 2019 Chortle Awards.
I had been loving Ruffell on Mock The Week for a while and when I saw she was performing at the Fringe, I was absolutely devastated to see her show had sold out (as devastated as you can be when you’ve watched four one woman shows about motherhood in one day). But, it popped up that she was doing a bonus show and so I booked it almost immediately. Dance Like Everyone is Watching, a show named after a phrase her eclectic mother said wrong is a celebration of her family, her fiancé, her new life in London (Kent) and her becoming comfortable as a gay woman.
In a small Fringe venue, Ruffell’s huge personality and honesty filled every nook and cranny in the room. There was a particular sense of importance that night. Something warm and sentimental, an artificial nostalgia was hanging in the air and it truly felt like that gig really mattered to Ruffell. Her discussion of her experience of Pride was really transformative. I was cackling throughout the whole gig, but as the gig drew to a close and she discussed the very real and relevant struggle of LGBTQ+ people with a dash of humour, I shed a tear. Seeing someone speak so proudly about their sexuality and command an audience with such wit and excellence; it was the first time I truly felt proud, in the rainbows and glitter and calling my grandma to tell her I like girls.
That is the mark of an excellent comedian in my opinion. One who makes you laugh, makes you feel euphoric but also one who leaves a mark on you emotionally. And she truly did. After all, 11 months after that gig, I was still impacted enough to be writing this article. She was a refreshing breath of fresh air on the Edinburgh comedy scene.
So, check out her tour when it is able to recommence, do a YouTube deep dive into her repertoire and tune into her social media. She is the best comedian I have ever seen live and I cannot recommend her more.
Check out Suzi Ruffell here: