Lauren Edwards: Brace Yourself {Melbourne International Comedy Festival} – Comedy Review

Rating: 5 out of 5.

I’m going to start by saying that Lauren Edwards is one of my favourite Australian comedians. Everything I see her do makes me laugh, so when she announced ‘Brace Yourself’ at this year’s comedy festival, wild horses couldn’t keep me away. Regaling the audience in stories from her teen years in a back brace to the present day as a passionate and knowledgeable scented candle lover, Lauren Edwards will make you cry laugh from start to finish.

Edwards has that unique ability to have the audience fall in love with her from the second she walks onto the stage, dressed for comfort in a matching pink outfit and a pair of white crocs. Lauren has cemented herself, in my brain, as one of the most relatable and refreshing comedians that Australia currently has.

During my session, almost every single joke or remark had audience members gleefully nodding along with agreement, especially when it came to judging people based on the brand of scented candle they have. I would very rarely, if ever, want to engage with a comedian willingly, but Lauren is to be able to read the room. For example, I love crocs, and I wouldn’t normally want to exclaim a mutual love for them out loud, but the room with Lauren Edwards in it felt like a safe space. She won’t force you into audience interaction, but you’ll want to interact with her. Lauren has created such a fun environment, that even if you go solo, you won’t feel alone.

Lauren manages to make her serious health condition of scoliosis that still affects her life today, a subject that the audience can laugh about without guilt. Audience members will also be treated to a tastefully SFW X-ray of the current bend of her spine and slideshow of what is and isn’t a back brace.

Stand up isn’t my favourite type of comedy as admittedly, my brain needs to be entertained and if you ramble on for too long without that sweet punchline, I will zone out. But Lauren Edwards rapidly throws her jokes like a professional fighter, with every one of them landing and perfectly timed. Whenever the audience laughed, Lauren’s face would lights up as if to say, “You liked that one? I’ve got an ever better one coming!” Her comedy is always from a place of passion, talking mostly, about the things that make her the happiest in life, even talking about having scoliosis in high school. This isn’t talked about as some sombre thing; the subject was handled really bloody well and some audience member with the same condition laughed the loudest.

It will be cliché to say that a millennial will get the most enjoyment out of this, but it’s true, we can all appreciate her anecdotes about mental health, and how as a generation, we are both better for and worse off for wanting to improve our mental health. Besides, what’s more relatable to a chronically ill millennial than loving babies but also hating them because they take away a little bit too much attention when your health isn’t the best, especially when your Sun is in Leo?

There’s nothing too dark in this show. There is never a moment where Lauren goes too far, as she never tries to push you, she just wants you to have fun! Brace Yourself is also like a diary entry read aloud to the audience. Lauren is brave enough to do it or maybe it’s the fact that she’s a Leo and loves the attention too much.

Brace Yourself is what’s been missing in Australian stand-up comedy; something relatable that isn’t firmly stuck in the political world or miserable. This doesn’t mean that Lauren Edwards doesn’t have any important things to say, she just knows how to not bore the audience when she does. When you dive into Lauren Edwards comedy. you’ll see why I find her so funny; this talented comedian has found that perfect sweet spot of Australian nostalgia and relatability that we all need right now.

Lauren EdwardsBrace Yourself is currently on at the Malthouse Theatre – Playbox until April 7.
For more information and ticketing, visit:

Photography supplied.

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