Nat Luurtsema @ The Pleasance
Nat Luurtsema’s solo Fringe debut is a show of two halves, but boy is the second half worth it.
In My Head, I'm A Hero is about being ready for any disaster. For the first part of the show, this consists of some slightly timid stories about drunks on trains and witnessing accidents with her mum. It's all quite ordinary observational stuff and not all of the punchlines connect, but Luurtsema soldiers on admirably.
And then, without any kind of fanfare, the show begins to change. Luurtsema tells us about her lonely childhood, illustrated by blown-up photos of herself alone in the park and a battered copy of The By Myself Book, a real souvenir of her childhood. We're shown a video of the bizarre marching rituals at the Freemason-run public school she attended, and this segues into lengthy routine about her teenage struggle with mental illness and anorexia. This sequence is genuinely impressive and Luurtsema shows great skill in keeping the audience laughing while sharing such painful personal detail.
Luurtsema is obviously going to be a big star. She's smart, charming, energetic and photogenic. This isn't the show she'll be known for, but one day everyone will know her name. Even if they can't spell it.