André de Freitas: “What If” at Edinburgh Fringe 2023

*** 1/2 (out of 5)

André de Freitas jokes about being Portugal’s biggest export since cork. Then again, did you even know about Portuguese cork? Can you even name another Portuguese stand-up comedian?

To be fair, de Freitas doesn’t so much resemble a young Cristiano Ronaldo as he does a young John Leguizamo. Which is a good thing for comedic purposes. De Freitas doesn’t shy away from telling us about his personal and professional journey, which has included stints living in his car as well as underneath a staircase at his job, and about how he’s on the come-up, opening on tour for the likes of Russell Peters. And yet he is slightly shy about his stint as a male escort. What a tease?

As for his stops and starts in comedy, he jokes about how he learned English from watching TV, and how speaking in English frees him from his Portuguese life and family, akin to a “witness protection program.” His folks didn’t always believe in his comedic aspirations. When he hears the term “what if,” all he can think of is the regret in not finding out the answer.

So when they ask what if it doesn’t work out, he’ll always respond, but what if it does?

André de Freitas: What If runs through Aug. 27 at Pleasance Courtyard Bunker 2.

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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