“Nicole Travolta is Doing Alright” at Edinburgh Fringe 2023

*** (out of 5)

Nicole Travolta has a fascinating story that’s more clever than funny in the delivery.

In case you’re wondering, and you most definitely are, her father was “the cheapest Travolta” but the family name still carried a heavy burden even in Orlando because of her famous uncle, John. Nicole eventually did go Hollywood, got engaged and sucked face with Charlie Sheen on Anger Management, perhaps the longest lasting of a few gigs she scored in TV (others included episodes of Two and A Half Men and The Middle). But she also got $45,000 in debt from retail therapy coping with abandonment issues. Instead of stardom, she found herself spray tanning the stars. Or worse. At least she didn’t join Scientology?

A clever conceit allows Travolta to showcase her celebrity impersonations, using them as a way to hide the identities of her actual high-profile spray-tanning clients.

I’d like to see what this show would become without the A/V cues, which do a lot of heavy comedic lifting. Or if she zeroed in on the irony of a famous name without the privilege of being a nepo baby (how might she react to claims she were one?!), or if she focused on one particular subplot in her narrative arc. But that’s not the show you’ll see at this Fringe.

Nicole Travolta is Doing Alright runs through Aug. 26 at Greenside @ Riddles Court

Sean L. McCarthy

Editor and publisher since 2007, when he was named New York's Funniest Reporter. Former newspaper reporter at the New York Daily News, Boston Herald and smaller dailies and community papers across America. Loves comedy so much he founded this site.

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