Wednesday, 22 August 2012

An Evening With David Hasselhoff - Review

Pleasance Grand, Edinburgh


A star of two globally acclaimed television series, minor roles in a handful of movies, and an accomplished lead of several big musical theatre productions ( to say nothing of his German popstar fame). So when David Hasselhoff shows up for a week’s residency at the Pleasance Grand, to quote Arthur Miller, “attention must be paid”.  

The opening night saw the venue almost packed. The crowd was pumped up, the show opening with a mini movie, showcasing the man’s career. As the video ended, coolly dressed in a pin stripe suit and shod in spectacular spats shoes, Hasselhoff breezed onto the stage. One does not need to be a diehard fan to recognize the man’s charisma and star quality, both of which are often lacking from today’s wannabe celebrities as well as many established entertainers. His classic good looks, and refreshingly self-deprecating style, set him apart from the pack. His talent is not just singing, it is acknowledging, possibly uniquely, that he is a global star who does not take that status too seriously. The man’s on stage performance is 5 star. One simply wants to watch and hear him perform. So he used an autocue extensively, and his glamorous backing girls mimed. Did anybody care? No. This was The Hoff.

The lights and sound and onstage security suggested a production budget that was unlikely to be recouped via ticket sales, but if Wikipedia is to believed, with a $100 million fortune in the bank, Hasselhoff is not doing this gig for the money. As he told the audience, what this boy from Baltimore loves most of all is performing on stage. With nods to Baywatch, Knight Rider, Manilow and an audience participation on-stage limbo, The Hoff is another example of the Edinburgh Fringe at its very best.

Runs until August 27th

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