Fringe slot for local comedian

Marjolein Robertson at the the recent Shetland's Got Talent show - Photo: Davie Gardner

A SHETLAND based comic has landed her debut slot at the iconic Edinburgh Fringe festival.

Marjolein Robertson, who has performed stand-up in New York and Amsterdam and currently tutors an improv group in the isles, will take to the stage at Cowgate’s Opium venue at 5.30pm every day between 6-16 August.


The show will be titled ‘Marjolein: UK’s 2nd Most Northerly Comedian’ in reference to Unst based Les Sinclair, who also has a slot at the festival.

It will form part of the PBH’s Free Fringe programme, which invites anyone to apply to perform at the festival.

The 26 year old is currently in the process of penning her set, which is set to draw on her experiences of the last few years following her stint studying archaeology at the University of Edinburgh.

The show’s blurb reads: “Marjolein Robertson, single, 20-something, once professional, female who lives with her Mam, Dad, Sister, Brother-In-Law and Niece in Shetland. Observational comedy about your world from an islander (not a terrorist).”


“It’s really interesting doing stand up in Shetland because I feel I can never use the same joke twice, with the same people watching at different shows,” Robertson said.

“This has actually been quite good for me as it forces me to keep writing new material every time.

“I will use what I know from the past works from reactions from the audience, then write more, a lot more. The basis of the show is what I’ve been up to in the past few years and how it’s in the end lead me to the Fringe.


“I have a skeleton and two books of jokes I’ve been cataloging – now it’s just fitting it all in, writing it into one coherent story.”

Robertson cites the likes of Eddie Izzard, Paul Foot and Margaret Cho as comedy inspirations and their irreverent take on the world is set to filter through into her set.

The Westside woman won’t be shy of playing on her Shetland heritage, either.

“Unique selling points are hugely helpful for promoting any show,” Robertson said.

“I think Shetland intrigues many folk, and no wonder – the furthest north in Britain…I don’t really need to explain it.

“I am definitely using my Shetland identity as part of the show as well. Like the idea of a Herodotus’ mirror, looking at the mainland from an islander’s point of view, questioning, exploring and reminiscing about when I was at university in Edinburgh.”

Robertson and Sinclair are hoping to perform their shows in Shetland before they head south, but no details have yet been confirmed.

For now, Robertson’s time will be spent honing her craft ahead of the big debut.

“I’m a mixture of both nervousness and excitement,” she admitted. “Nerves are good though, because I need the fear to work.

“I’m the worst procrastinator, and always have been. At university I had no motivation to write essays until the fear hit just before the deadline.

“One of the reasons I announced my show this early is to encourage that fear to creep in now so I get motivated.”