THIS was an emotionally barnstorming show that had me splitting my sides with laughter, toe-curlingly embarrassed and at the point of weeping in almost equal measure.

David Baddiel began conventionally enough, a simple stage set with a screen behind him which he used to great effect throughout.

His Twitter intro warmed the audience up nicely and was beautifully judged, gradually drawing us into a relationship with him and his family.

He talked about the death of his mother and how we sanitise and dehumanise the dead by only speaking well of them, then he proceeded to both shock and entertain us by discussing her unbounded appetite for sex with both her husband and her lifelong lover with alternately gentle and affectionate humour and an almost savage glee.

His father’s on-going dementia received a similarly mixed treatment. The eminent Dr Baddiel, scientist, is afflicted by Pick’s Disease, a form of dementia that removes the socially constructed barriers that smooth interaction with those around them, becoming more obscenity-loving, ruder, and aggressive, more inclined to say shocking things, even at his wife’s Shiva.

And David recounted these incidents lovingly, then wryly observed that, actually, his father might have dementia, but the behaviour is still only an extension of who he was, REALLY.

Throughout, Baddiel took the temperature of his audience, noting that he had left behind some in shock during the more savagely humorous pieces, but not allowing any sharp intakes of collective breath to slow or stop the recounting of his family story.

By his account, his brothers seem to be divided by the show and his children haven’t seen it yet, although his daughter is asking to. So, is it cathartic, prurient or a form of revenge for the numerous embarrassments he has suffered over the years for his parents' eccentric behaviour?

I couldn’t quite make my mind up. But what I do know is that it was very funny, deeply thought provoking and moving. If you haven’t seen it and have a chance to, grab it with both hands - not a second of your time will be wasted – and the standing ovation at the end showed that most of last night’s Grand Opera House audience agreed.