What better way to commemorate International Women’s Day on 8th March 2017 than by attending the opening night of Pottymouth.

The three-day affair has etched itself in local history as Singapore’s very first one-woman comedy show, and Sharul Channa earns bragging rights for breaking that glass ceiling with a baseball bat she borrowed from Harley Quinn, or so one whimsically imagines.

(Feature image credit: KC Eng Photography)

Photo by Indie Strings

Yes, the change in venue just two days before opening night did spark controversy, but the sudden turn of events turned out to be a blessing in disguise. Shifting to Gateway Theatre allowed Sharul to make an entrance worthy of a true maharani. Like a boss, she stepped onto the stage from a secret lift that was revealed on cue from behind drawn curtains.

Armed with a cordless microphone, she then turned her last-minute scramble for a new venue into rib-tickling stand-up material. Pent-up emotions were unleashed, but not before she embarrassed some latecomers who were greeted by roars of laughter from the already seated audience members.

Photo by Indie Strings

The brave (and foolish) souls who dared occupy the front row were not spared either. They became easy targets for her razor-sharp jokes, and as a reward for getting picked on, were given free toilet paper with her face on it. If nothing else, the rolls of sanitary paper will remind them of how she brilliantly engaged her audience and outwitted them.

What was truly commendable was the subtle fashion in which she eased into her primary narrative, which is one of self-identification, and the implications it has on her world views and personal relationships.

Photo by Indie Strings

Pottymouth is autobiographical, and behind the veil of passive aggressive humour is an intimate look into her life. For over an hour, we learn about Sharul as a Singaporean, we learn about Sharul as a Punjabi wife to a Sindhi husband, we learn about Sharul as the daughter of two immigrant parents, and we learn about Sharul as an individual woman.

Yes, she’s loud, inappropriate and drops more F-bombs than you can bother keeping track of. If you hadn’t already realised, the show is called Pottymouth for a very significant reason. It shows you the many layers of a woman who is unapologetically herself, and you will hear her roar.

Review by: Arman Shah