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Arts / Marjolein to preview comedy show ahead of month-long stint at the Fringe

COMEDY fans will get a chance to sample an Edinburgh Fringe show next week when Marjolein Robertson hosts a preview gig in Lerwick.

The comic will perform an hour-long show at the Dowry to try out the material she will showcase at the internationally renowned Fringe festival in August.

Her Fringe show is called Thank God Fish Don’t Have Hands, and it is affectionally being described as an “unapologetic brain dump from someone who always apologises”.

August will mark the first time Robertson has performed a full stint at the Fringe since 2019, with the Covid pandemic calling off the 2020 festival and then reducing its size the following year.

In 2021 Robertson had a couple of ‘work in progress’ performances, but this time around she is performing for most of August.

The Dowry show – set to take place on Tuesday (12 July), with tickets available online – will give Robertson the opportunity trial some gags on home turf.

Describing what a preview show entails, the comedian said: “You usually have a notepad on stage with you as well, so it is working out how all the jokes are and how the layout of the show is, and where you need to put in more gags.

“The bones are there, but the gags are still being put in all the time.”

Robertson said performing in Shetland also allows her to use more of her natural tongue.

Down south, she will often have to knap on parts about crofting, for instance.

“If you lose someone on a word, then they might not get the punchline, and you’ve lost them on that joke,” she said.

With comedy shows a victim of the pandemic, Robertson turned to online video streaming platform Twitch during lockdown – hosting live storytelling, and other bits and bobs, to a global audience from the comfort of her home.

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She built up a fairly dedicated following, but has not had much time recently to stream.

Robertson explained that she took to streaming online after missing the feeling of performing live – which she describes an “escape”.

“I came home before lockdown kicked in, because the gigs all ceased. I just came home and felt so anxious. I was desperate for that feeling of forgetting what’s going on.

“I thought I’d tell folk tales, because stories are nice escapism for me, and if anyone enjoys it, maybe they’ll get the same nice escape. And then it just kicked off from there.”

This story was edited to reflect that the gig was rescheduled to Tuesday (12 July) due to illness.

  • Marjolein Robertson: Thank God Fish Don’t Have Hands runs at The Stand 2 in Edinburgh from 4-28 August (with a night off on the 15th) from 4pm. Tickets can be bought online.

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