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REVIEW - Benji Waterstones: You Don't Have to be Mad to Work Here (Stand-up) [Edinburgh Fringe 2023)

Updated: Aug 21, 2023

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Benji Waterstones: You Don't Have to be Mad to Work Here, Stand-up comedy, Edinburgh Fringe 2023. Photo credit: Rebecca Need Menear

You Don’t Have to Be Mad to Work Here’ is a fly-on-the-padded-wall account of the mental health world from NHS psychiatrist and award-winning comedian Benji Waterstones, directed by Edinburgh Comedy Award winner Jordan Brookes.


In his debut show, Dr Benji presents many true, but anonymised, tales from his time working on an NHS Psych ward. The pressure, the risk, the relentless lack of resources; it's no wonder the job takes it's toll. All of his stories are shocking, and this show presents a fascinating insight into a world few of us ever get to experience. It's no wonder that the rights to this have been picked up for both a book and a TV show. Aren't we all fascinated by the macabre and the taboo?


Thankfully, Benji never pokes fun at the patients, but rather at the doctors, the nurses, the outdated medical practices, and the bizarre, sometimes dangerous, situations he would find himself in. His keen observations come from not only working in the NHS, but from being a patient himself.


Obviously a very kind and caring man, this show feels incredibly intimate and is clearly a labour of love. Alongside the sensitive, yet amusing tales from the psych front line, Benji shine's a light on some of his own struggles, and he weaves a lovely personal family tale between those of his patients. Everyone in the audience was rooting for Dr Benji, and he created a warm, open environment with ease.


I found the show to be well constructed and compelling, and Dr Benji himself an engaging and candid narrator. I didn't find it 'laugh-out-loud' funny, but it's a sincere and entertaining insight into the world of psychiatry, presented by someone who knows how it feels, to not feel yourself.


I can't wait to read the book and watch the TV series! Well worth your time.

⭐⭐⭐


When and Where?

Venue: Pleasance Courtyard - Below

Time: 4.30pm

Dates: 2nd – 28th August (not 12th & 21st)


📸 Photo credit: Rebecca Need Menear

 

About Benji Waterstones

Benji Waterstones: You Don't Have to be Mad to Work Here, Stand-up comedy, Edinburgh Fringe 2023. Photo credit: Rebecca Need Menear

He is a consultant psychiatrist based in London and was featured in a list of ‘Inspiring Psychiatrists’ by the Royal College of Psychiatrists in 2019. He has a special interest in psychedelic research and worked on the ground-breaking study featured in the BBC documentary The Psychedelic Drug Trial. In May he is appearing in the BBC Radio 4 Comedy show Best Medicine.


As a comedian he made a splash, winning Beat the Frog World Series in 2014 as well as being a finalist in So You Think You’re Funny, Leicester Square New Act competition and being twice shortlisted for the BBC New Comedy Award. He is also a resident host for the international storytelling night The Moth in London.


Benji’s first book 'You Don’t Have To Be Mad To Work Here' was acquired by Penguin in a nine-way auction and is being published in Spring 2024 with the TV rights already sold to the BBC Studio’s owned House Productions.

 

🌟REVIEW - Benji Waterstones: You Don't Have to be Mad to Work Here (Stand-up, Edinburgh Fringe 2023)🌟


🎟️ Disclosure: I am an Edinburgh Festival Fringe accredited media reviewer and as such I receive complimentary press tickets in exchange for my honest reviews. My reviews and star ratings are always my honest opinions.


📧 For media and review requests contact Lisa_InTheTheatre@outlook.com

💗 To see more pictures and watch my videos follow @Lisa_InTheTheatre on Instagram

Lisa in the theatre, Scottish Theatre blog, Comedy reviews

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