REVIEW: LUKE KEMPNER: JUDI DENCH BROKE MY HEART (Pleasance Dome) ★★★★
You may know impressionist Luke Kempner from his successful viral video skit, parodying Downton Abbey, or perhaps from his subsequent TV show on BBC3! Luke has also trodden the boards starring in Les Mis, Avenue Q and South Pacific. Luke returns to Edinburgh Fringe with his new show Judi Dench Broke My Heart.
This is a one-man comedy impressions show detailing Luke’s plight to secure a part in the West End production of Les Misérables and how, along the way, he fell in love with and married Dame Judi Dench.
Luke plays a host of characters from pop culture including an incredibly accurate Sir Ian McKellen, Jeremy Kyle, Tom Daley, Andy Murray, Alan Carr and Dame Judi Dench herself, amongst others.
Luke’s impressions range from outstanding to having an element of go-with-it. Each character was introduced with their name and without this it may have been difficult to pin point who some of the voices were supposed to be. However, Luke had the mannerisms of each character down perfectly. The story is a classic farce which escalates as the hour progresses and contains some cracking jokes which I shall not spoil here.
At various points in the story there are some short musical breaks where Luke reveals his rather spectacular singing voice, giving short excerpts of songs from Les Mis that tenuously fit the story. I wish these musical parts were longer as his voice is incredible and I sincerely hope to see him on the West End stage soon.
The show ends with the entire cast of characters singing One Day More which is cleverly done and had me in stitches.
Luke Kempner: Judi Dench Broke My Heart plays at the Pleasance Dome until 28 August 2016 (not 15th).
Reviewed by Pete Forbes-DuGrenier