It’s almost time for The Edinburgh Fringe once more, and as ever, there’s a liberal sprinkling of TVO favourites heading up to Scotland throughout August.
The wonderful Rachel Stubbings makes her Edinburgh debut with Stubbing Out Problems, whilst David McNeill returns to the Fringe in spectacular form with his first solo show, Canoe Ride 3000 . They are joined by the mighty Sarah Kendall, whose show Get Up, Stand Up has been getting rave reviews – and the inimitable Paul Foot with his latest show, Kenny Larch Is Dead.
And that’s not all – with Pros From Dover genius Phil Whelans part of the line up for improvised celebrity chat show Monkey Toast and our beloved Waen Shepherd as part of an all star ensemble cast for tragi-comic play The Intervention, this looks set to be one hell of a Fringe for TVO.
The Festival also gives us a rare opportunity to break out of our remit a little, and highlight a number of shows from other comics we don’t often get to mention on our pages, if at all, with our own set of top picks for Edinburgh 2012, which we’ll be sharing with you later this week.
For now, though, stop staring at that bulky catalogue, wondering if you’re ever going to find the time to look through it, and let us summarise the great Oniony shows you can see if you like the type of comedy which brought you here in the first place. Enjoy – and if you do go along, why not tell us what you think of the shows by dropping us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org?
Edinburgh 2012: The Onion Round Up
DATES: Aug 1st-13th, 15th-27th
WHERE: Underbelly, Bristo Square, Bristo Square, EH8 9AL
PRICE: Mon-Thur: £8.00 (£7.00 cons) Fri-Sun: £9.00 (£8.00 cons)
Bad breath? Scared of clowns? Worried your ex is over you? I’m an online agony aunt phenomenon – I can help! I’ll probably help you with issues you didn’t even know you had…
Stubbing Out Problems marks Rachel Stubbing’s first full length foray into the Edinburgh Fringe, and as such, we at TVO are behind her all the way. Based upon the cult YouTube sensation which has featured all many of TVO faces, Stubbings debut is an assured slice of technologically enhanced guru mockery that’s more than worthy of your attention. After a storming set at The Velvet Onion Live back in May, Rachel has been finely tuning and honing her debut with a string of preview gigs, and now the star of Alice’s Wunderland and Jackal Films is ready and raring to go. You can see a sneak preview, featuring a cameo by Stephen Evans, right here…
We spoke to Stubbings to see if she had a message for the good people of the Onion, and she kindly provided us with a short but sweet response to you all…
“Oi, come check out my live healing skillz of which there are many, please?”
DATES: Aug 1st-13th, 15th-26th
WHERE: Pleasance Courtyard, 60 Pleasance, EH8 9TJ
PRICE: Mon-Thur: £8.00 (£7.00 cons) Fri-Sun: £10.00 (£9.00 cons)
Come jeer at this feckless fool in his homemade canoe striving to answer questions he’s as yet unsure of … and to find the Chinese man who urinated through his letterbox at 1am two weeks ago.
Canoe Ride 3000 marks Dave McNeill’s first solo fringe show, having last appeared at the festival with Colin Hoult in madcap spy caper Zimbani - which later became a tv pilot featuring Julian Barratt, no less. His recent appearance at The Velvet Onion Live is just one brilliant moment in amongst his regular appearances on the London live circuit, and this magical flight of fancy is going to be an absolute corker.
We spoke to McNeill to see if he had a message for our readers, and he was keen to share his thoughts with you all…
“Dear peelers of The Velvet Onion! On the coming of August I shall be taking my Canoe 3000 to Edinburgh for a journey of discovery, of danger and to find possible answers relating to the man from China and why he urinated through my letter box a few weeks ago. Join me! A man can become fairly lonely all by himself in a canoe with nothing but the open sea and his thoughts.”
DATES: Aug 1st-12th, 14th-27th
WHERE: Pleasance Courtyard, 60 Pleasance, EH8 9TJ
PRICE: Mon-Thur: £10.00 (£9.00 cons) Fri-Sun: £11.00 (£10.00 cons)
Perrier and Time Out London Comedy Award nominee Sarah Kendall returns with a blistering new hour of stand-up. The Sunday Times called it ‘Brilliant observational comedy’, and Chortle say it’s ‘A truly brilliant show. Got to be seen.’
She’s back! The powerhouse stand-up first came to TVO’s attention via her starring role in Beehive, but she’s been wowing crowds in the UK and her native Australia for many, many years. Kendall is a comic in her element – her confidence on stage allowing her to care not a jot about looking ridiculous, yet never descending into arrogance like so many observational comics tend to. She is crude but surrealistic, blunt but whimsical – and never gives less than her all. Not only firing on all cylinders as a comic, but nowadays as a mother too, Sarah’s latest show should appeal to anyone slightly naffed off at the world, but who is still in love with it all the same.
DATES: Aug 2nd-14th, 16th-26th
WHERE: Underbelly, Cowgate, 56 Cowgate, EH1 1EG
PRICE: Mon-Thur: £10.50 (£9.50 cons) Fri-Sun: £12.00 (£11.00 cons)
Deep within the sinking sands of the Perspex jungle of youth, in the forgotten nebula of nothingness, comes an objet du desir – a trombone fruit. Needless to say, it’s another warm year.
What can be said about Paul Foot’s unique brand of comedy that we haven’t already tried to articulate with our rave reviews over the past few years? Suffice to say, Noel Fielding was so taken by Foot’s charms, he directed his previous Edinburgh show Ash In The Attic, and propelled Paul into stardom with his guest slots on …Buzzcocks and Luxury Comedy. Paul Foot occupies a moment in the space time continuum so unlike any other comic before or since, and comedy fans tend to fall into two groups: those who have seen him work his magic on a room and have fallen in love with Foot’s ways, and those who haven’t.
DATES: Aug 1st-12th, 14th-26th
WHERE: The Assembly Rooms, 54 George Street, EH2 2LR
PRICE: £15.00 (£12.00 cons)
Chicago, 2012. Zac is confronted by friends and family, trying to redeem him before it’s too late. As we delve deeper into his alcoholism, the more skeletons appear from the family cupboard’s dusty depths. A series of explosive revelations unravel the brutal truth behind the cycle of abuse. A father and son tale for the 21st century.
A fascinating looking show indeed, The Intervention is the brand new play from Fringe First Award 2011 winner Dave Florez, and features an all-star cast of top-notch comic talent, including the truly wonderful Waen Shepherd, Holy Flying Circus star Phil Nichol and Dead Boss regular Aisling Bea. For those wanting something a little different to the wall-to-wall standup and character comedy of our usual Fringe recommendations, this black comic drama has all the hallmarks of a classic in the making. Get in before anyone else does… this is one show that deserves a life beyond Edinburgh.
DATES: Aug 1st-13th, 15th-26th [Phil Whelans present Aug 11th-17th]
WHERE: Pleasance Dome, Potterow, 1 Bristo Square, EH8 9AL
PRICE: Mon-Thur: £10.00 (£8.00 cons) Fri-Sun: £11.00 (£9.00 cons)
Six-time Canadian Comedy Award-winning shot hits Edinburgh! An all-star UK cast including Phil Whelans, Humphrey Ker, Sara Pascoe, Cariad Lloyd and Rob Broderick will create hilarious improvised scenes from onstage interviews with real celebrity guests.
One epic cast list of big names and up and coming stars join forces for this improvised chat show, featuring celebrity guests and such stuff of spontaneous chaos. Co-created by occasional Rich Fulcher collaborator and improv legend David Shore, this promises to be a late night treat whoever features. Pros From Dover’s Phil Whelans [who also appeared in Brass Eye and Katemodern] will be part of the madness between August 11th & 17th.
If you’re attending the Festival and manage to see any of these shows, why not send us a short review? Email us via email@example.com to share your thoughts on the wonders of Edinburgh! Keep peeling to find out our top picks from beyond the Onion, later this week!