Review: Jacqueline Novak: How Embarrassing For Her at Pleasance Courtyard
4★★★★

Bringing her much celebrated stand-up from New York to Edinburgh for the first time, Jacqueline Novak quickly unites a room of strangers with an hour of hilarious tales told with an air of familiarity.

Proudly flaunting and making jokes about her pot-belly, Novak shares all, from her thoughts on body confidence, to her awkward but hilarious encounters with the opposite sex, to her own ADHD – which she gleefully pokes fun at. The connection has been made, Novak knows we’re hooked, and everyone in the audience can’t wait to hear more about the complexities of her mind.

She takes us back in time to a dark period that we’re all familiar with – the pre-teen years. The room is eagerly silent as she recounts the memory of a family friend giving her valuable sex tips on sexuality – advice which she has not only carried through into adulthood, but which she also enthusiastically demonstrates on stage. 

Although there is an undercurrent of feminism throughout, it doesn’t dominate the gags. Showing comic breadth and a refusal to be limited, Novak’s willingness to delve into the male psyche creates a show which captivates all genders. It’s impossible to be a prude in her audience as Novak knows how to tell a story with both suspense and hilarity, invoking our most embarrassing but endearing memories.

Jacqueline Novak passionately celebrates femininity in its perfectly imperfect form. Effortlessly shutting down society’s ideals, How Embarrassing for Her provides a safe place for you to laugh at your most intimate thoughts.

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