Sara Barron: For Worse (3 stars)

This article is from 2018

Sara Barron: For Worse

An occasionally grim existential journey into a cradle of filth

Making a Fringe debut on the back of some heavy praise for her live storytelling work in New York, little seems to faze Sara Barron. For Worse is a sexually frank and emotionally open hour which takes both the audience and the performer on a slippery path towards full, uncomfortable disclosure on just about anything she wants to discuss.

Plenty of comedy acts have been wholly unsentimental towards their own offspring in recent times, but Barron is amusingly cutting in her withering analysis of her small son's abilities and personality. Almost uniquely at this year's festival, Barron's comedy turn is a deeply personal one but which seems to eschew any kind of open-wound trauma (hasn't she read he Fringe rulebook?). Unless, that is, you count the injury she suffered in her early masturbation career. Or the grim existential angst she must go through each time her early porno literature is read out as a two-hander playlet with a member of the audience?

But again, no matter the awkwardness, Barron doesn't blink. As a performer, she goes for both flirty and dirty with her crowd and the material, casually reflecting on spit roasts one minute and the 'one-penis prison' of marriage the next. For Worse is perhaps a show that is easier to admire than adore, but Sara Barron's Fringe debut will stick in the mind well into September.

Just the Tonic at The Tron, until 26 Aug, 3.40pm, £5 in advance or donations at the venue.

Sara Barron: For Worse

  • 3 stars

PBJ Management The ‘reigning queen of New York’s live storytelling scene' (Jon Ronson) and host of the hit US storytelling show, The Moth, delivers her debut stand-up hour. Filthy, funny and incisive, Barron skewers her husband, her child, WhatsApp, herself and, notably, a tweenage sex script she wrote way back in 1992.