This Friday sees the launch of the 2014 Edinburgh Fringe Festival, and as always, a number of TVO regulars are joining the thousands of shows on offer throughout August.
With new shows from the likes of Dan Clark, Rachel Stubbings, Kim Noble, Paul Foot, Joey Page, Sarah Kendall and Tony Law on offer, plus plays featuring Stubbings and Justin Edwards, it’s a pretty packed schedule for Onion fans, and there’s a whole host of other great shows to look out for too.
As such, we felt it was a good time to summarise some of this year’s juiciest offerings, for those of you unsure of what to see from a stuffed to the gills festival.
The TVO Regulars
© Feature Spot Productions
DAN CLARK: Me, My Selfie and I
The star of How Not To Live Your Life reinvented himself last year as a fully fledged comedy rock star, with a critically acclaimed album under his belt containing such classics as Pippa and Tranny With Amnesia. Now he’s back to what he does best: upbeat, slightly filthy but downright heart-warming stand-up. His new show focuses on “love, death and crushing loneliness”, but in typical Dan style, you’ll leave feeling good about life.
Pleasance Dome – 8:20pm, Aug 1-12, 14-24
© Avalon Promotions Ltd.
I KILLED RASPUTIN
Written by comedy legend Richard Herring, this new play focuses on Felix Yusupov, conspirator in the murder of Rasputin, being interviewed by American journalist EM Halliday over fifty years later in 1967. The former richest man in Russia is now reduced to making money from his tall tale, and Halliday is determined to finally reveal the truth. The Thick of It star (and Ealing Live veteran) Justin Edwards stars alongside Nichola McAuliffe.
Assembly George Square Theatre - 3:35pm, Aug 1-24
PAUL FOOT: Hovercraft Symphony in Gammon # Major
It’s often hard to quantify the components of a Paul Foot show, so we’ll let the magic mind of Mr Foot do the work for us here:
“Glistening in the wake of last night’s pearl saga, premium line – caught Sally’s clam fist choir socks it to the salt babes big time baybayyyy. Cutlery cage enquiries? First come, first preserved.” Well, quite.
Underbelly, Cowgate - 7:30pm, Aug 1-10, 12-24
© Mick Perrin Worldwide / PBJ Management
SARAH KENDALL: Touchdown
She came. She saw. She conquered the Newcastle and District Under-14s Touch Rugby Competition. The former Beehive regular and stand-up veteran is back with a look back to 1992, when she was forced to play Women’s Touch Rugby and accidentally made minor history.
Another unmissable hour with one of Australia’s finest exports.
Pleasant Courtyard - 9:30pm, Aug 1-10, 12-25
© Tony Law / Show and Tell
TONY LAW: Enter the Tonezone
Ah, Tony. The Tonester. The Tonezone. Ealing Live veteran turned surrealist stand-up comedy demigod, the truth about the ToneZone is you either enter it willingly or you stand at the entrance, looking confused and miming indicators that you’ve lost your wallet and will have to give it a miss. His latest show offers life affirming, changing comedy, and a promise of ‘Testicle Ankle’. Don’t ask, just savour it.
The Stand Comedy Club III & IV - 12:10pm, Aug 1-10, 12-24
© Soho Theatre
KIM NOBLE You’re Not Alone
Kim Noble is a comedic law unto himself, and never one to rest on his laurels, he’s propelled his work into multi-media performance and film in recent years. You’re Not Alone continues down this path, taking audiences on a journey throw tower blocks, supermarkets and Facebook as the star of Garth Marenghi’s Darkplace and Luxury Comedy chronicles his attempts at connection, friendship and employment at B&Q.
Traverse Theatre - 11:15pm, Aug 19-24
© PBJ Management
JOEY PAGE: This is Not a Circus
Self-proclaimed as “everybody’s 18th favourite absurd comedian”, Joey Page has been grafting a solid reputation for himself since his early appearances as a protégé of a certain luxurious comedian. Appearances on Never Mind the Buzzcocks and a few seconds as a burnt sausage here have only served to increase the fanbase built up by steady gigging nationwide, and his latest technicoloured extravaganza is as silly and irreverent as ever.
Underbelly, Bristo Square - 10:45pm, Aug 1-11, 13-25
© Live Nation / Mike Leigh Associates
RACHEL STUBBINGS: Doing It for Himself
First coming to our attention via her work with Alice Lowe on Jackal Films, Rachel Stubbings became a cult icon for her Stubbing Out Problems web shorts and Edinburgh show, before branching out as an actress and film-maker in her own right. This year she returns to Edinburgh with a show about her trial by error existence, as she tries to become a cool independent woman, all by himself.
Underbelly, Bristo Square - 3:00pm, Aug 1-11, 13-25
© Pure Theatre LLP
THE 3RD SECTOR
As well as her own standup show and the first five performance of Knightmare Live, Rachel Stubbings will also be appearing in satirical play The 3rd Sector during the festival, which is inspired by real-life experiences and brought to life by Pure Theatre Productions. It tells the story of Marlin and Josh who discover their role in a corrupt corporate charity, and examines the ethics of giving when we donate first and ask questions later.
Pleasance Courtyard - 12:15pm, Aug 1-10, 12-25
TVO is designed to focus on a family of frequent collaborators, but that’s not to say we don’t enjoy a number of other comedy acts on the circuit. The Edinburgh festival gives us a rare chance to shout out about some names we don’t normally get to feature, including several who often share the bill with ‘our lot’. If you’re still looking for shows to see beyond the main bunch above, you could do a lot worse than following some of our suggestions below.
© The Pleasance / PBJ Management
Following on from their smash hit second series for Channel 4, which featured TVO veteran Rufus Jones, no less, the cult favourites return to Edinburgh for a limited eight night run towards the end of the festival.
Expect a smattering of old favourites and potentially some new material ahead of a third telly run.
Pleasance Courtyard - 22:00pm, Aug 15-17, 19-23
© Anil Desai
ANIL DESAI’S Last Night at the Movies / Not Indian Enough
The globe-trotting impressionist returns to the Free Fringe circuit this year, with over 50 movie star impressions mixed into stand-up stories of comedy, action, adventure and romance in Last Night at the Movies, plus a second show, Not Indian Enough featuring all new stand-up material from the gifted mimic, comic talent and all round charming gent.
Formerly of sketch troupe The Giant Pineapple Boys, and presenter of James Wren’s Spank! at previous festivals, Anil was also a supporting cast member on Goodness Gracious Me, so be in no doubt of his prestige due to his commitment to the free fringe. Getting one free show from Anil was impressive, getting two is phenomenal!
Not Indian Enough: Cowgatehead – 5:00pm, Aug 1-24
Last Night at the Movies: Laughing Horse @ City Cafe - 8:00pm, Aug 1-3, 5-10, 12-17, 19-24
Free show, for details CLICK HERE!
© The Grandees
THE GRANDEES: A Creepshow / BaBoom!
Not one, but two new shows from the rapid fire sketch trio described by Hen & Chickens head honcho (and TVO regular) James Wren as “The most inventive, creative, bonkers group I’ve seen since we had the Boosh.”
The trio all appeared in TVO classic The Day They Came to Suck Out Our Brains, and Marny Godden was also in Kill Phil earlier this year, so the TVO connections are strong, marking them as one to watch.
A Creepshow lets the team go dark with creeps, crawlers and chaos, whilst BaBoom! is the latest installment in their sketch comedy madness. See both.
A Creepshow: Heroes @ The Hive – 8:45pm, Aug 1-11, 13-24
BaBoom!: Underbelly, Cowgate – 4:00pm, Aug 1-11, 13-24
For A Creepshow tickets, CLICK HERE! For BaBoom! tickets, CLICK HERE!
© Lee Griffiths
LEE GRIFFITHS: Post Traumatic Sketch Disorder / LATE NIGHT GIMP FIGHT: The Worst Of
The biggest crime against comedy nature this year is the lack of a fully fledged show from Fringe veterans Late Night Gimp Fight – TVO favourites and smashing blokes one and all. But whilst we have to contend with a humble three-night best of from the team, one Gimp is bringing his own unique brand of stand-up to life in his own right.
Lee Griffiths (aka the ‘Head Gimp’) promises a messy, dark and (he hopes) funny show which will unclog the nonsense from his head, and explain in detail why his family is more messed up than yours.
Lee Griffiths: Post Traumatic Sketch Disorder: Pleasance Courtyard – 7:15pm, Aug 1-24
The Worst of Late Night Gimp Fight: Pleasance Courtard – 11:00pm, Aug 21-23
For Lee Griffiths tickets, CLICK HERE! For Late Night Gimp Fight tickets, CLICK HERE!
© Supporting Wall
JONNY & THE BAPTISTS: The Satiric Verses / JONNY DONAHOE: Class Whore
Earlier this year, musical satirists and generally lovely chaps Jonny & The Baptists got into an awful lot of hot water, by pissing off a ‘political’ party with a camptastic disco number. The duo’s brilliant UK tour subsequently had to be manned by heavy security, and they stoked the fires a little further by collaborating with Mark Thomas to campaign to get ‘farage’ entered into the dictionary as another word for ‘bin juice’. Use it – it’s fun.
Now they’re back in Edinburgh with their latest concoctions. Expect musical treats galore – and if you can’t get enough Jonny, you can see his 2013 solo show ‘Class Whore’ for free towards the end of the month. Their show will also be transmitted to cinemas nationwide, so stay tuned for more info on that when we get it!
Jonny & The Baptists The Satiric Verses: Pleasance Dome, 9:40pm, Aug 1-10 12-24
Jonny Donahoe, Class Whore: Cowgatehead, 7:30pm, Aug 12-16 19-24
For Jonny & The Baptists tickets, CLICK HERE! For free Jonny Donahoe tickets, CLICK HERE!
And that’s just the tip of the ice berg! With great shows from Nathaniel Metcalfe, Lou Sanders, Susan Calman, Andrew O’Neill, Will Adamsdale, Gareth Morinan and many more on offer, we can’t help but tell you to just take in as much as you can beyond the big guns. You just may be watching the big stars of tomorrow.
Enjoy the fringe, everyone!