Helen Bauer: Grand Supreme Darling Princess

Throwing the gauntlet down and challenging dominant narratives on women’s need to be vulnerable to be loved, Helen Bauer’s Grand Supreme Darling Princess is an incredibly empowering hour that analyses the problems with this mindset, and gives us confidence to be who we are instead of who someone else might want us to be.

Empowering

Bauer criticises gender roles, especially the Disney princess mindset of needing to be saved by a man. She rips away the rose-tinted and romanticised glasses through mockery and personal anecdotes to indicate how vulnerability is the furthest thing from an opportunity to allow a man to save you. Bauer makes these intricate connections and moves between topics very quickly to the point where we can be listening to the opportunities of British school trips and end up at the development of Disney films. Her ability to wrap up a set with a grand fantasy is highly entertaining and brilliant, because not only is it a nod to everything that came before, but she leaves the show on such a triumphant and defiant note that we cannot help but feel completely electrified as we leave the venue.

I have used the word empowering already to describe Grand Supreme Darling Princess but it is and beyond that, it's just something that everything needs to hear. Something clicks for us when we watch Bauer and hear what she has to say, because even though she’s making quick-witted jokes, the underlying subtext is incredibly important. Because there is just so much pressure on us to fit into a certain image or personality to make us more palpable, it's really comforting to hear from someone who tells us the opposite. Bauer has the immense task of undoing years of conditioning in just an hour. And it’s just so nice and helpful to hear that we don’t have to be a certain way, that the problem is not us, that we don't have to make ourselves fit. Everyone needs to hear what Bauer has to say.

Bauer dissects the issues with society and its internalised pressures on women, as well as how it influences perceptions on how a woman should act. The framing of this analysis as a comedy show allows the underlying subtext come to the forefront. In Grand Supreme Darling Princess, Bauer shows us all that we should own our Big Dictator Energy.

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Reviews by Katerina Partolina Schwartz

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The Blurb

Star of Live at the Apollo, Late Night Mash and Edinburgh Comedy Award Best Newcomer nominee, brings a show all about the women in her life, from her mother to her best friend and that one girl who was mean in 2008. Oh, and Disney Princesses, obvs. Co-host of the smash-hit podcast Trusty Hogs and seen on BBC3, Comedy Central, Dave, ITV and more. 'Sticking out for all the right reasons’ **** (Scotsman). ‘Utterly brilliant’ **** (List).

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