By Jay Ménard
For someone who takes to the stage barefoot, Mike Delamont’s ability to slide into the character of God is as comfortable as a favourite pair of well-worn shoes.
Delamont’s back in London for his third iteration of his series, God is a Scottish Drag Queen. The easiest way to describe it is that God is a professional-quality stand-up show on the Fringe stage. And, for those new to the Fringe or perhaps with some trepidation of what to see, it’s one of the must-attend productions on the circuit.
God is not as you may remember from Sunday School. He has traded in his robes and flowing hair for, well, a more sensible haircut, and a slightly less flowy blouse/power suit combo. And, of course, he delivers each line in a lilting Scottish brogue.
Delamont’s third iteration of God is a well-crafted combination of contemporary issues, local references, and historical analysis. He takes back the Bible and the Church from those who have manipulated them for their own means, and lays out what he really meant to say.
From simplifying the 10 Commandments to one – one that applies to any occasion; to showing family photos (OK, just letting us know what Jesus looks like); to skewering the televangelists who have taken his name in vain, God’s word isn’t just law – it’s gut-bustingly funny.
Delamont’s a seasoned pro who knows how to work the crowd with a look or a pause. He can improvise with skill. He knows how to craft a set and he knows how to lay the foundation for later punch lines early in the show. And he knows how to make the audience feel like they’re seeing something especially created for them — Delamont’s a frequent returnee to London and he laughs along with us at some of our city’s foibles.
Simply put, he’s extremely funny. And this Scottish Drag Queen is a God-given gift to comedy.
You may not genuflect before this “God” but there’s a very good chance that you’ll at least be doubled over with laughter at some point. Do yourself a favour and make a pilgrimage to the Palace to see God is a Scottish Drag Queen.