Desiree Burch of Live at the Apollo and Netflix’s ‘Flinch’, yet again brings her boundless energy and exquisite storytelling back to the Fringe. Mixing hard-hitting truths, hilariously mad post-truths and plenty of nudity, Burch is bursting through the stage with all the intensity of a double-dose acid trip.
Part personal account of institutionalised racism, part horny, high rampage through a desert in Nevada, Burch manages to juggle the insane and the insane. She deftly exposes the audience to an unfamiliar world of emergency faces, ‘magical blacks’ and the real story of the IQ test. Frantically saving her last few non-perverted 80’s idols, and Bono, Burch highlights how much and how little things have changed. It’s jam packed with nostalgic references and balances the serious and the surreal, but sometimes transitions between the different pieces are a little rough.
The overarching theme, though, is how we can be consciously trapped in loops perpetuating the stereotypes we despise. At one point in Burch’s post-truth, ball-tripping storytelling, she exoticises a Mexican patron of an imaginary bar by pinning all of her embarrassingly little knowledge of Mexico onto him. Meanwhile, she herself is being exoticised by a creepy white man calling her Beyonce. An underlying sadness comes over the audience, acknowledging our part in continuing these casually racist cycles, but is counteracted by Burch’s own hopefulness. She describes moments where she’s certain she’s about witness another repeat in this cycle of ignorance but is instead gleefully proven wrong. Instead, she sees an act of kindness that restores her faith in humanity.
Hysterical, historical and hallucinogenic, Desiree Burch unapologetically presents the Burning Man experience we’ve always (?!) wanted and still gets the D.
Desiree Burch: Desiree’s Coming Early is on at Heroes @ The Hive, The Big Cave
At 19:40 until 25th August
Book tickets here
Image: Idil Sukan