The Garden Of Unearthly Delights’ Spare Room, Tue Feb 17
This is an impressive near-solo show from home grown Adelaide talent Demi Lardner. She looks like a ten year old boy, only rather smarter, even her voice is young, but her writing and thought processes are sophisticated, mature and always surprising, even on the odd occasion where you think she’s going to do some ordinary ‘young comic’ stuff.
Lardner won Australia’s Raw Comedy a couple of years ago and then went on to win the UK version in 2013, with her utterly original voice. She blurts out more ideas and twisted notions in this 40 minutes than all the hours of shows I’ve seen in the last week. This, ladies and gentlemen, is how you do surrealism, anchoring it in the real world but filtering it through dreamlike and subconscious references. Don’t turn off, she’s not pompous nor solemn, the pace fizzes and crackles and it’s a joy to behold such freshness.
For my money, she didn’t need Vaughan Henderson to take 5–7 minutes of show warming up (the show is only 45 minutes all in). She sweeps across not unfamiliar territory – being a weird kid, family break up, living with parents, overheard conversations on the train but her utterly original responses to life incidents keep the audience permanently, deliciously off balance, with phone calls from her dad in her subconscious suggesting depths of emotion combined with irritating parental chuntering on.
Her position combines vulnerability and strength. When she describes having wanted a good role model from her mother she reveals her fragility, but she’s not remotely mawkish. She’s utterly in charge of her creativity and it’s great to hear such imagination at play. Her run is cut short for TV work so race to get a ticket before Sun Feb 22.
Demi Lardiner performs Birds With Human Lips at The Garden Of Unearthly Delights’s Spare Room until Feb 22.
Book at FringeTIX on 1300 621 255 or adelaidefringe.com.au/fringetix. Click HERE to purchase your tickets.