This is the 2008 news
archive - click here for the 2009 Reviews & Press
Sep 08 - Three
Weeks - Craig Shaynak - Well my
brothers, it must be said that George WWIII, had my 'shizzle' with his funny little jokes
and strange ironies. This man, despite being unmistakably American, sure knows how to play
to the international crowd, regardless of ripping off every single nationality. The idea
of a training session worked very well, keeping the audience tentative yet not
overbearing. Mr G WWIII points out the simplest inconsistencies between nationalities and
has the crowd in stitches, and that, my friend, is a true skill. Although perhaps some of
his work is a little risky, the fact that America is subject to the same ridicule as every
other place makes it all ok
? One funny dude that was cramped by his venue. The
Counting House, 1 - 24 Aug (not Mon), 10.40pm (11.30pm), free, fpp 42
Sep 08 - Three
Wees - The Umberella Show - The
miserable weather doesnt mean we all have to be pathetic wet drips. This is not a
criticism of the comic trio up from Brighton; it was the lukewarm audience who put a
damper on proceedings. Comedy is like sex - if you're not paying you surely expect to do
some work. Thrice the audience refused the offer of dry wit under the umbrella. First up
Sam Stone had to use all her energy and rapport skills not so much to warm-up as to start
defrosting the room. Dan Allens dry humour had little effect on the wet audience,
his carefully delivered jokes disappearing over their heads. Paul McCaffrey just about
finished the defrosting. The comedy was alive and well, too bad the audience werent.
Laughing Horse @ Jekyll & Hyde, 10 -25 Aug, free ticketed, fpp 107
2/9/08 - Chortle - The Best things in life
(and the Fringe) are Free http://www.chortle.co.uk/correspondents/2008/09/02/7340/the_best_things_in_life_are_free
Aug 08 - Three Weeks - Shaker (Re-stirred)
Where else are you going to stage this wonderful play than in a
cocktail bar? Shakers is the story of cocktail waitresses, down in the dingy corners of
Espionage these four brilliant women will capture the essence of the service industry
uncannily well. Taking on different roles deftly and easily they became the punters as
well as staff, the girls out for a 21st birthday, the men too scared to ask for
a slow comfortable screw (thats a cocktail, for those not in the know),
the men very unafraid to ask for a screw of any kind. This was a fast-paced, hilarious
hour and a half in the company of some fully believable, ballsy waitresses. Bravo ladies.
Aug 08 - Three Weeks - Laughing Cows Oh god, theres
a hen party in, the traditional kind of screaming dunken women who came onto my friend
like they were 20 all over again and heckled to their hearts content. But Jojo
Sutherlands Laughing Cows can certainly deal with that, and then some. From the
plain ignoring to the shouting back at them, the hen party was not quieted, but at least
quelled for a while. Having spoken to Jojo about her ideas for the event, I knew that she
wanted people to not consider the evening as female comedy just good comedy
that happens to be female. And thats what it was, great comedy and good fun,
Id trust anyone on the changing line up, so go along and see what laughing cows
Aug 08 - STV - Lynn Ruth Miller http://video.stv.tv/bc/search/Lynn+Ruth+Miller
26/8/08 - Three Weeks - Free Festival - the
only way to do the Fringe - http://edinburgh.threeweeks.co.uk/feature/4309
26/8/08 - Three Weeks - Gill Smith answers
the Quick Quiz - http://edinburgh.threeweeks.co.uk/feature/4215
22/8/08 - Three Weeks - Hot Box Three single American gals out for good time seek young male audience
member to harass (in a nice way). Must have GSOH and beer money. Hot Box is one of those
little gems of the Free Fringe, featuring a refreshing international brand of humour -
it's good to hear jokes about Kansas and Texas as opposed to say, Glasgow. The stand-up
elements, which comprise the majority of the show, are genuine and funny, particularly
Claudia's analysis of a personals ad. They do suffer from a lack of audience; this is,
after all, the Argyle Bar on a soggy Monday night. The sketches are excellent, however,
and reminiscent of the highlights of 'Smack The Pony'. You should check these girls out,
if you ever have the chance.
25/8/08 - The Scotsman - The Curious case of
the missing Millions - How Fringe acts loose money at the
big venues, with Free Fest Comic Barry Ferns http://news.scotsman.com/edinburghfestivalfringe/The-curious-case-of-the.4424572.jp
22/8/08 - Three Weeks - Life in 2D With their wit far more
developed than their facial hair, these youthful comedians commanded their audience with
raw talent. It seems that comedy is following suit with sport, music and acting where the
stars all seem to be getting younger; at twenty-one I feel I've missed my chance. He may
have been skipping school, but Daniel, only seventeen, gave the show its spark. While the
others showed signs of nerves, he looked most comfortable on stage and seemed fully aware
of his precociousness, poking fun at the fact that he's unable to buy himself a drink.
However, I'm sure plenty of the audience would have been willing. Very Scottish, very
funny and very impressive, I just wish it had been longer.
25/8/08 - Three Weeks Award Winner - Free Festival perfromer Lynn Ruth Miller,
for being a Fringe legend, for consistently scoring high marks from the ThreeWeeks review
team, and for putting on at least two shows a day every single day of the Festival.
24/8/08 - The Guardian - Are Free shows now starting to worry the big venues? "What should worry
[fringe director] Morgan and, indeed, the Big Four, not entirely smiling all the way to
the bank, is the continuing growth of the Free Fringe, where punters pay what they wish at
the end of a show; some comics report they have made more from the collection bucket than
they ever did at the main venues."
23/8/08 - Three Weeks - Jojo Sutherland on
teaching stand-up http://edinburgh.threeweeks.co.uk/feature/5304
22/8/08 - Three Weeks - Grim Not all of us lose our virginities in brothels, but evidently some
do. And so begins one of 'Grim's' cautionary tales - the one about the girl who wanted too
much too soon. Loosely based on stories by the Brothers Grimm this play mixes the
pseudo-feminist with the macabre to demonstrate some of the problems us lassies face in
the modern world. Remember when you worked as a morgue technician and you fell in love
with the dead guy, so you stole his heart? No? Just me then? Anyway, fair play to the
enthusiastic and unconventionally good-looking cast of this odd little number, for at
least managing to keep straight faces while discussing the unsavoury details of
deflowering a girl.
22/8/08 - Three Weeks - Jay Gees Jamboree Another late night comedy pick of the Fringe, and one that promises a laugh
at least every 10 minutes with the fantastic Andy White bringing articulate wit to his
compère duties. It's all too easy to go from the sublime to the sorrowful when there are
two of those wee small hours to be filled. You may be treated to the best Finnish comedian
in Edinburgh right now, Tomi Walamies, or you may get some strange Dutchman who doesn't
know why he's there. Certainly worth a risk if the Fringe hasn't got to you by one in the
22/8/08 - Three Weeks - Jay Gees Jamboree This show has gone for the Roald Dahl method of entertaining kids,
which generally involves being as creepy and weird as possible and seeing who blinks
first. It works reasonably well, but it's hard to tell if the children are intrigued or
confused. The poems lack the vivid imagination of Dahl but there are some, like the tale
of the boy who continually picked his nose and his snot-monster friend, which hit the mark
for giggles. A few of the younger kids seemed perturbed by the whole thing, not quite old
enough to keep up and understandably freaked out by Ms Googiepants' ability to pull some
very scary faces. It'll keep the easily befuddled quiet for 45 minutes though.
21/8/08 - Three Weeks - Mental - Free I was initially wary of the prospect of attending a mind-reading show -
thoughts of being dragged up on stage and having my deepest secrets extrapolated and
exposed to the audience ran through my head. Fortunately, Pete Wells is approachable,
sincere and not out to humiliate anyone. Although evidently nervous, Wells demonstrated
some impressive Derren Brown-esque exercises of the subconscious, culminating in a
mind-boggling trick that left me genuinely confused as to how he had done it. His jokes
weren't of the same calibre as his illusions and there were one or two tricks that didn't
quite go according to plan, but with a bit more showmanship and a larger repertoire of
material this could be something mighty impressive.
21/8/08 - Three Weeks - Chris Brooker Chris Brooker is a particularly juvenile 32-year-old. He's still
living like a student, avoiding mortgages and anything resembling a real job, and is
overly proud of his XBox 360. So begins eighty minutes (apparently he's not organised
enough to buy a watch) of familiar jokes: fighting over the best mug, who took the bins
out last and how, eventually, all of us will start talking to our cats in a slightly
creepy way. There's a huge jump in tone towards the end when, in reflecting on the death
of a close friend, Chris conveys the realisation that he should probably get off his arse
and do something. This was poignant and strangely inspiring.
21/8/08 - Three Weeks - Maureen Younger It takes a certain kind of woman to perform stand-up in front of her mother -
or a certain type of mother - and I think in this case the word for both might be
'feisty'. This is only a short show, billed at half an hour, but with about ten minutes
devoted to welcoming stragglers into the fold, perhaps to the detriment of the show, but
to the benefit of the friendly atmosphere. Maureen tells of her mother's escapades with
muggers and her own devious ploy to get seats on buses, as well as the "gentleman
caller" who made her "howl like a hound". For all that this show deals
primarily with Maureen's sex life, it's not crude, just engaging and funny.
20/8/08 - The List - Waxing Cynical http://hairline.org.uk/2008/08/20/waxing-cynical/
20/8/08 - The List - Lynn Ruth Miller http://www.list.co.uk/article/12168-another-side-of-the-mirror/
20/8/08 - Times Educational Supliment - Kevin McCarron on teaching and stand-up http://www.tes.co.uk/article.aspx?storycode=6000902
20/8/08 - Three Weeks - Journey Central Comedy Club It's sometimes easy to forget that there are venues beyond Prince's Street,
but this show is proof positive of worthy events occurring outside Fringe central. Compere
Lainey Mclean should admittedly review her jokes and technique, but she clearly knows how
to network. These are acts who never let the pace drop once, unsurprising from a line-up
featuring headliners such as Andy White and Vladimir McTavish. With some brilliant
quick-fire lyrics from Ashley Frieze and shocking fashion advice from Annette Fagon, there
was an incredible variety of comedy styles provoking the laughter. If this high calibre of
acts is maintained throughout different line-ups it'll definitely be worth the trek, and
if you live in Leith, you've no excuse not to see it.
20/8/08 - Three Weeks - This show belongs to Lionel Ritchie The people at the Lionel Ritchie cult
sure know how to put on a show. We were treated to a selection of fine comedians with
crazed compère Barry Gibb in between, anxious to get us applauding to the point of
hysteria - though he didn't have to try hard. All three comics got plenty of laughs and
Tom Goodeve was especially successful with his sharp observational humour. Darren Kisner,
however, gets an honourable mention for his routine claiming that Ikea is a Nazi plot. The
biggest highlight, however, was the Tape Measure Extension competition which, to me, was
about as exciting as it gets when it comes to sporting events. Forget watching the
Olympics - this is what everyone should be watching.
20/8/08 - Three Weeks - Dan Willis Dan Willis is doing four shows a day at
this year's Fringe, so he can be forgiven for a having a dodgy throat. What hasn't been
damaged by such a heavy workload, however, is Willis's spirit for the festival, and you'd
be hard pressed to find a more friendly comedian in the whole of Edinburgh. Willis leaves
any cynicism at the door, and only shows passion in his performance and an all-embracing
attitude towards the audience. With topics chosen from a velcro covered board, Willis
jokes adeptly with amusing anecdotes about violent hecklers and the fear of flying.
Probably the only stand-up show at the Fringe where you can leave for the toilet without
20/8/08 - Three Weeks - The Good, the Bad and the Cuddly The Good, the Bad and the Cuddly, self-proclaimed
'Russian dolls of comedy', are three men with three very different comedy styles. In a
back room in Meadow Bar, Sion James bases his set around interaction with the audience and
reminds us what stand-up should be as he riffs expertly and even makes fat jokes that are
endearingly funny. Paul Harry-Allen is Russell Howard meets Rob Brydon, and is a joy to
watch. His infectious energy has the audience in stitches and his interpretation of his
'favourite' records is hilarious. Finally, the dry, droll Mike O'Donovan is a complete
contrast, laid-back and almost monotone; perhaps too slow-paced to follow Harry-Allen.
These are three funny men, but Harry-Allen is the one to look out for.
20/8/08 - Three Weeks - Festival of Football 2 As Tony Cowards
points out, you need a sense of humour to follow a football team, and in comedy the sport
seems to be a somewhat overlooked well of material. Football apathetics need not apply
here; there isn't a lot for anyone who is impartial about the beautiful game, but this
should prove to be an entertaining hour for anyone who knows their Rotherham United from
their Ronaldo. Cowards is likeable as a sincere eccentric and obviously knows his stuff,
his observations and anecdotes far superior to his run of the mill joke making. It's
interesting, but there's certainly room for improvement - with a bit more spit and polish
this could be a championship-winning performance (Sorry, I couldn't resist).
20/8/08 - The Scotsman - Shaggers http://news.scotsman.com/edinburghfestivalfringe/Comedy-review-Shaggers.4412822.jp
20/8/08 - The Scotsman - This show belongs to Lionel Ritchie http://news.scotsman.com/edinburghfestivalfringe/Comedy-review-This-Show-Belongs.4412840.jp
20/8/08 - The Scotsman - Hollywould - interview in the Scotsman http://news.scotsman.com/edinburghfestivalfringe/Sell-us-your-show-Hollywould.4413703.jp
19/8/08 - The Scotsman - Ivor Dembina http://news.scotsman.com/edinburghfestivalfringe/Comedy-Review-This-is-Not.4406792.jp
19/8/08 - Three
Pettigrew - Obsessive, Compulsive, Disordered My hands and feet go numb sitting on the floor in this jam-packed venue, but
pins and needles are a small price to pay to see this friendly, free funny-man, and he has
some suggestions for numb hands too. Nick proves a lovable guide to the problems of OCD,
turning his troubles into lots of laughs. An accomplished gag-smith with an eye (ear?) for
puns, his seemingly shy act develops into some quite bold banter with the audience. The
act adapts amusingly to allow for the assertive girl in the front row, who, Nick
discovers, is single. Numb hands, by the way, are a great for spicing up masturbation, but
this super stand-up leaves me with little need to amuse myself.
19/8/08 - Three Weeks- Afternoon Men 'Afternoon Men' was
definitely an enjoyable hour in the company of some very talented comedians. Sara Pascoe's
slightly ditzy persona heightened the humour of her everyday observations, particularly
her indignation at inanimate objects (how dare a carton of audacious orange juice tell her
to 'concentrate'?). Bringing new life to the humour of misunderstandings, she could well
be one to watch in the future. James Everett was a crowd-pleaser of similar proportions,
with puns and gags that were so groan-worthy they were hilarious. Both were perfectly
charming, and were the highlights of the show. The line up differs from day to day but
judging by this afternoon's performance, this is a brilliant way to sample some decent
19/8/08 - Three Weeks- Derek Ryan: Mongrel At his first
ever Fringe show, Derek Ryan was under-prepared, hadn't done any flyering and had a video
which we all had to huddle around his laptop to watch. But, his chat about animals and
humans made up for the shortfalls. Tales from his travels in Africa were funny and his
stories always linked back to the theme of the way animals and people are intertwined. He
discussed everything from dressing your dog to what direction a rhino can travel in, and
in doing so he gently tickled my funny bone. This show will get better as his run goes on
and I'm hoping he won't have to refer to his set list in future shows. It's free and worth
19/8/08 - Three Weeks- Secret Midnight Gig "We have
absolutely no idea who will be on," claim the organisers. So how should I review an
ever-changing line-up that can even be a mystery to those behind the show? No, I don't
know either. What won't change, I dare say, is just how inebriated the audience, host and
performers all are, and it's this alcohol-soaked edge that does encourage a relaxed
atmosphere, as banter is rife and each act is brave enough to expose their most daring
material. It's not unlikely that some big names will appear in future line-ups: I was
treated to fifteen minutes of Alan Carr. A good night of cheap laughs.
19/8/08 - Three Weeks- Aging is Amazing - Lynn Ruth Miller - A one-woman musical is a daunting
prospect at the best of times, but when the woman in question is only a few years off a
Zimmer frame, it becomes positively terrifying. Fortunately, Ohio born Lynn Ruth Miller
pulls it off with more style than most people half her age, and the result is a funny,
touching and original performance. Singing 40s style lounge songs, Miller covers
inappropriate subjects such as drug abuse, sex for the over seventies and stripping,
encouraging a willing audience to sing-a-long. Aside from a couple of weaker songs,
there's nothing here that won't endear you to the 75 year old; to be honest, it's worth it
alone to see an OAP in nipple tassels crooning about crack.
19/8/08 - Musical Theatre Matters - Lynn Ruth Miller http://www.musicaltheatrematters.org.uk/aging-is-amazing/
19/8/08 - Chortle - World
Record Attempt -news of Paul foots record
breaking attempt a 25 gigs in a day, starting and finishing at Free Festival venues
more mentions in press: Evening News http://edinburghnews.scotsman.com/festival-news/Joan-buttons-herself-up-with.4407056.jp
18/8/08 - Three
Ruth Miller - Mirror This woman is an adorable gem; her stories are warm,
touching and true whilst her delightful attitude and charisma make her a real joy to
watch. Despite her age, Lynn has a vivid and sharp memory combined with fantastic command
of the English language, and she unashamedly discusses her view of the world as a child,
bringing out the child in all of us. Lynn is also doing other shows in the festival that I
will be checking out to see if this lady can please a stubborn comedy crowd as well.
18/8/08 - Three Weeks- Comedy Sportz Everyone knows rules are no fun, right? So you would understand my
concern when I was first introduced to the 'rules' of ComedySportz, the competitive
version of improvised comedy. I shouldn't have worried. The simple and familiar rules were
thus: two teams of comedians must each come up with an improvised sketch based on an
initial topic suggestion from the audience. Sounds risky? Indeed, but the gamble
definitely paid off as this group proved themselves skilled and funny with a remarkable
ability to think on their feet. They were clearly enjoying themselves, and it was obvious
that this delight rubbed off on the audience. Surprisingly funny, more than a little
bizarre, and a good afternoon of fun for all the family.
18/8/08 - Three Weeks- Tania Edwards Tania Edwards and some guest star comedy friends
entertain the audience with witty stories, some good jokes and just generally hilarious
chit-chat. The audience took some time to become properly involved - Tania herself being
totally under appreciated - but after some very admirable hard work, the performers
eventually managed to tease those big, hearty, belly laughs out of the audience. The last
performer, Pat, literally talked for 10 minutes without taking a breath: he was very, very
funny. The fact that this show is free makes it even better, so get yourselves on down to
Leith and have a good old chortle.
18/8/08 - Three Weeks- Mac's Lyrical Mac is a straight talking poet from Northern England
who doesn't let his energy lapse as he tells stories about his childhood, puberty, and
involvement with the army. This is not laugh-out-loud comedy though; there are some witty
lines, but most of the humour comes from empathising with his experiences as the last boy
to have pubes when he was growing up, or his realisation that he looks like his father. I
enjoyed the informal atmosphere of this event, as it made me feel as though I was just a
friend listening to his story, not an audience member at a comedy gig. Mac delivers his
material without too much sentimentality (except for the slide show) and is certainly
worth the trip to Leith Walk.
18/8/08 - Three Weeks- The Bavarian Tradition Show On a cold, rainy, Edinburgh night, you could do a lot worse than
joining in the fun with Vroni and her busty friends at the Counting House. Let your
wonderfully dead-pan and rather likable German host guide you through all things Bavarian,
from the art of beer drinking, to German-style dating. I thoroughly enjoyed clapping,
yodelling and whooping along to traditional Bavarian songs, all played on Vroni's
accordion. If there's one thing us Brits have in common with the Germans then it's a love
of beer, so there really is no excuse for not indulging in this free show. Prepare to link
arms with your partner, jump on seats and get down with the Bavarians!
18/8/08 - Three Weeks- Homework For Heroes In this show four comedians take to the stage to talk
about everyday events they have found heroic, before placing their hero on their 'hero
scale', based on the audience reaction. The two girls of the group were considerably
funnier than their male counterparts; particularly the compere, whose tales of singledom
and monkeys were terribly funny, if ever so slightly sad (but it's okay, she has a man
now). That's not to say the men were not enjoyable to watch, but their acts could
certainly do with a bit of polishing. With an interesting theme, plenty of crowd
interaction and, most importantly, a great attitude from the quartet, this is one of the
better free shows at the Fringe.
18/8/08 - Three Weeks- Answering the
ThreeWeeks Quick Quiz today... Jane Hill from the Lunchbox Files
1. What is your 2008 show all about? Three talented new
comics tell jokes about life, love and lunch.
2. Why should we come and see it? See the comedy stars of the
future for free - at lunchtime.
3. If your show was an olympic sport, what would it be and
why? Rhythmic gymnastics. No particular reason - we just like the patterns they make with
4. What are you most looking forward to about this year's
Festival? Flyering - it's the most fun you can have handing out pieces of cardboard to
5. What are you least looking forward to about this year's
Festival? Being flyered.
6. What advice would you have for someone trying to navigate
the Fringe? Support the Free Festival - loads of great comedy for no cost.
7. What advice would you have for someone trying to survive
the Fringe? There are healthy and nutritious foodstuffs available in Edinburgh that aren't
8. Describe your show in three words Funny, free, lunch-y.
18/8/08 - Chortle - Nik Coppin - Stuff
18/8/08 - Black Lion - Rob Deb http://www.black-lion.co.uk/node/784
17/8/08 - One4Review - OCD: My Family and other Anals http://www.one4review.com/Comedy_/comedy2008/ocd_my_family_.htm
17/8/08 - Scotsgay - Shelley Cooper: Britishness (Review and Interview) http://www.scotsgay.co.uk/pdf/sg83.pdf
17/8/08 - Fringe Guru - Lunchtime Life Lessons http://www.fringeguru.com/editorial/reviews-08/lunchtime-life-lessons.html
16/8/08 - The Stage - Waxing Cynical http://ed.thestage.co.uk/reviews/132
16/8/08 - The List - Judi Dench Video http://www.list.co.uk/article/11808-dench-or-how-dame-judi-got-her-groove-back/
16/8/08 - The Guardian - Dodgy Posters, but free PR from the Guardian:
Dan Willis: http://www.guardian.co.uk/culture/gallery/2008/aug/08/edinburgh.festival.posters?picture=336339963;
Donald Mack: http://www.guardian.co.uk/culture/gallery/2008/aug/08/edinburgh.festival.posters?picture=336339988;
Topical Scurvy: http://www.guardian.co.uk/culture/gallery/2008/aug/08/edinburgh.festival.posters?picture=336339994;
Kevin Hayes: http://www.guardian.co.uk/culture/gallery/2008/aug/08/edinburgh.festival.posters?picture=336340018
16/8/08 - Hairline - Topical Scurvy for Lunch http://hairline.org.uk/2008/08/11/topical-scurvy-for-lunch/
16/8/08 - The Scotsman - News of Alan Carr saving the Day for Shakers http://news.scotsman.com/latestnews/Comedian-Carr-steps-in-to.4402627.jp
16/8/08 - Chortle - News of Alan Carr saving the Day for Shakers
16/8/08 - Three Weeks - This is not a subject for Comedy - Ivor Dembina As
the title indicates, subjects such as the Holocaust and suicide bombings in Israel don't
make for light entertainment, even if they do come from anti-Zionist Jewish comic, Ivor
Dembina. When I first saw Ivor this Festival in 'Shaggers', I remember through my drunken
haze that he was funniest of the four comedians. In this performance he masterfully weaves
together Jewish humour, storytelling, and cleverly offensive jokes about Christians, Jews,
and Muslims to brilliant effect. His material is intelligent and clever; embedded with
truth and honesty. He didn't resort to circumcision jokes, instead relying on the
predictable references to Jews and money. This is the best comedy show from the Free
Festival I've seen: thought provoking humour for any schmuck.
16/8/08 - Three Weeks - Bit Sized,
Improvised The basis for this show is that two Irish comedians take suggestions
from the audience and then dub these over short film clips, and it works quite well. Their
ability to improvise and bounce off each other really keeps the show together and their
carefully selected film clips are good for messing around with. Audience interaction
didn't go as far as picking on people and they weren't rude, but then they could have said
anything with their accents and got away with it. The two comedians work well together and
tell some funny stories of their own, for a free show it's good and although the film
clips may be repeated, the commentary will be different each night.
16/8/08 - Three Weeks - The Comedy Cartoon Story What would you do if your reflection got caught in a mirror? What
happened to the Princess when she had to Pee? Phil Sheppard explains through his cartoons
in this hour of storytelling. Reminiscent of storybook television shows, the format
cleverly kept the interest of even the smallest children by having one story in four
parts, and shorter ones interspersed between. The energy generated by Shepherd when
telling the stories was massive, and there was quite a bit of shouting, but the effort to
bring it all to life was admirable. Unusual and exciting, with beautiful cartoons and
cleverly crafted stories, this was brilliant fun for the kids, but outside, it was also
the parents who were raving about it.
15/8/08 - Three Weeks - I Kissed a Frog This is a thoroughly enjoyable slice of life about the tribulations of
a young woman in search of Mr Right amongst random shags, heavy drinking, and terrible day
jobs. We can all relate to this story; more so because of the deft handling and energy of
the two actors who utilise the confined space well, despite being hidden when seated. Some
poetry and half-hearted guitar are also interspersed throughout as the actors switch
between playing a character, re-enacting an event, and narrating the story. This is a
short, enjoyable package that should be sampled because it is relevant, quirky, and free.
There's also a community health message thrown in for good measure.
15/8/08 - Three Weeks - Topical Scurvy for Lunch It may be in the dingy back room of a football club, but
what emanates from this room is nothing but quality. 'Topical Scurvy' embodies what the
Fringe is about: talent showcased in obscure venues, discovered by unwitting punters. This
show combines timeless stand-up material with topical issues of the day, including a rap
between John McCain and Barack Obama, and whatever happens to be in the newspapers that
day. A special mention must go to Tony Dunn, who manages to pull off dressing up as a
crucified, blacked-up Jesus, without inciting a riot. The costumes are hilariously bad and
the show is unpolished, but the raw talent is enough to give the audience an excellent
15/8/08 - Three Weeks - Grab your coat Love, It's Helm and Taylor With Taylor's trademark headband and Helm's trademark hip-thrusts,
this pair is out to tickle funny bones with the help of flashing electronic drumsticks and
a dose of surreal madness at lunchtime. It's not exactly intellectual or complex, but
their gleeful and insistent silliness should get anyone smiling. They have a talent for
repeating anything until it becomes funny, as well as being perfectly willing to return
their heckles. Their partnership is based more on the concept that two hairy men are
funnier than one hairy man than that opposites attract, but with low budget slideshows,
games such as 'happy tag' and a peculiar interest in animals, you couldn't ask for much
more from free comedy in the afternoons.
15/8/08 - Three Weeks - Fine Sketchup I found the perfect way to hide from the rain, and its
name was 'Fine Sketchup'. With three different acts every day, it's a nice little taster
session. One of the acts was missing today because they "discovered they were
soluble", but the two remaining, 'Will & Greg' and 'Mould & Arrowsmith' more
than made up for it. Both duos have appeared on Channel 4, and I can see why. The sketches
were professional, well-written and flawlessly performed without the crudeness and
vulgarity of some of the comedy that I've seen so far, which I found completely
refreshing. I recommend 'Fine Sketchup' not just as the best way to hide from the
temperamental weather, but as the best way to see some great sketch comedy.
15/8/08 - Three Weeks - Club Sandwich I have a feeling that I
saw a reduced version of this show - the advertised 'chunky handful of rising stars'
amounted to only two comics. Mike O'Donovan is a relaxed Australian with fairly mainstream
material featuring jokes about smoking, fat kids and predictive text. Occasionally it's a
bit filthy and sometimes close to the bone, but he's a stand-up who gets the job done.
Hannah Dunleavy has some slightly more interesting, well-paced material which ranges from
John Prescott's bulimia to hardcore pornography. With a steady stream of laughter
throughout, but no new territory explored this was a good quick shot of comedy to kick the
15/8/08 - Freshair - Shelley Cooper Interview http://www.freshair.org.uk/2008/08/06/interview-shelley-cooper/
15/8/08 - Freshair - Steve Day http://www.freshair.org.uk/2008/08/10/review-steve-day-should-i-stay-or-should-i-go/
15/8/08 - Scotsman - A Borad Abroad http://news.scotsman.com/edinburghfestivalfringe/THEATRE-A-BROAD-ABROAD.4393924.jp
15/8/08 - Freshair - Festival of Football 2 http://www.freshair.org.uk/2008/08/10/review-festival-of-football-2/
15/8/08 - Freshair - Andy White http://www.freshair.org.uk/2008/08/10/review-andy-white-i-think-therefore-i-am/
14/8/08 - You Tube - Video turned up of... Alan Carr at Espionage at the Secret Midnight gig: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kLLT0pIPLN0
14/8/08 - The Stage - A Cold Slap Down Under http://ed.thestage.co.uk/reviews/206
14/8/08 - The Stage - The American, Coloured and Me http://ed.thestage.co.uk/reviews/177
14/8/08 - The List - Free Comedy Rebeliion http://www.list.co.uk/article/11570-free-comedy/
Our shows breifely reviewed are Turonimo Numpty, Hollywould
and Fine Sketchup
13/8/08 - Chortle - Steve Day on
the credit crunch and free shows http://www.chortle.co.uk/correspondents/2008/08/12/7218/adapt_or_die
13/8/08 - One4Review - Race Off http://www.one4review.com/Comedy_/comedy2008/race%20off.htm
13/8/08 - BBC News - Free Shows at the Fringe -
Alex Petty, Donald Mack and Lee Grant Interviewed. Online and audio. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/edinburgh_and_east/7559754.stm.
Diredct Link to audio: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/7560013.stm
13/8/08 - Three Weeks - I Need
your Love An experience of unparalleled randomness, as yet this is not a show.
It once might have been, before the guy doing it pulled out and put his slot up for grabs.
Enter Andrew J. Lederer, a ball of energy from Brooklyn, who intends to use the slot to
write a show called 'I Need Your Love' before the Fringe ends. Today he tested some
possible excerpts on his audience - autobiographical material about sleeping in a TV
studio, and brief appearances on 'Fame'. I mentioned it was random, didn't I? The show I
saw will probably be nothing like the show you see - he may even add in that dance number
- but be prepared to volunteer your opinions. It's a work in progress, after all.
13/8/08 - Fringe Report -
Dean Scurry http://fringereport.com/0808laughwithdeanscurry.php
12/8/08 - Fest - Another side of the Mirror http://www.festmag.co.uk/article/43702-another-side-of-the-mirror
12/8/08 - Three Weeks - Steve Day Steve Day was effortlessly funny, and very refreshing to watch, his
story telling hilarious, and his material of a kind that us normal folk can relate to. We,
the members of the average Joe audience were in stitches with Steve's painstakingly
detailed descriptions of a BT call centre's inherent office politics, and the difference
between the street cred of a value biscuit and a McVities. These tales were delivered with
poetic hyperbole, giving Steve a sweet child-like charm. He approached the fact that he is
almost fully deaf with flair and style, plus a tiny pinch of the anti-PC salt that Britain
craves just now. So should he stay or should he go? I really hope he stays.
12/8/08 - Three Weeks - Laughing Horse Pick of the Fringe No 'Pick Of The Fringe' will feature
all the acts you should see at the Festival, but this line-up featured some excellent free
talent, and the bombastically liberal Rick Molland is perfect for the role of compère. Of
the six comedians plugging their shows, the highlight of them all was Ismo Leikola, a faux
Finnish stand-up who uses language difficulties to great effect, making even porn jokes
sound quite innocent. If you want a free taster of the Fringe, this will give you plenty
to dip into.
11/8/08 - Chortle - Phil Buckley's
Edinburgh Stories http://www.chortle.co.uk/about/2008/07/28/7131/edinburgh_stories...
11/8/08 - Edinburgh
Evening News - Bavarian Tradition Show IT'S one way to get an audience... give away free beer, which is
what the producers of the Bavarian Tradition Show are doing tonight to mark the start of a
two week run, at The Counting House. Better still, as the show is part of the Free
Festival there's no door charge either. Vroni Holzmann takes the Free Festival to
another level by dispensing free beer from an imported barrel, while explaining that this
is just another Bavarian tradition she would like to introduce to Scots and other cultures
alike. Free beer will also be served at the last performance on August 25. Show starts
10.05pm, and is over 18 only. Time to get your drinking pants on.
11/8/08 - RichardHerring.com
- Anthology http://www.richardherring.com/warmingup/warmingup.php?id=2109
10/8/08 - The Scotsman - Andrew Furgesson
10/8/08 - Fringe Report - Phil Ellis http://www.fringereport.com/0808philelliswhyibatheinajax.php
10/8/08 - Fringe Report - Dog Day King http://www.fringereport.com/0808dogdayking.php
10/8/08 - Fest - I kissed a Frog http://www.festmag.co.uk/article/43673-i-kissed-a-frog-and-it-gave-me-herpes
9/8/08 - Sunday Herald - Comedy
Finance is no Joke - "...Instead I spent a
damp Wednesday afternoon seeing what the Free Fringe festival was like. Where's Yak is a
two-woman show about the fantasy lives of Wimpy burger-flippers. The performers really had
star quality, though they were let down by some weak material. Hurricane Katrina turned
out to be a leggy stand-up with a multiple-personality routine who was quite funny, and
Dean Scurry, a scurrilous Dublin comic, was a hoot.
You do pay, of course - a bucket is waved in your face as you
leave. They ask for a fiver and most people seem to give two or three quid, on average,
which sounds poor, but makes commercial sense for the performers. They don't pay for the
venues and so don't end up with huge debts. Even on £50 a show, they can eat.
I think this could be the future. It's certainly truer to the
original idea of the Edinburgh Fringe. Whether the army of festival reviewers will agree
is another matter - they get their tickets for nothing from the big venue promoters. But
at free shows, well, you just can't walk out without donating something, can you?"
9/8/08 - Three Weeks - Rob McCulloch Rob McCulloch is a talented
singer-songwriter who really deserves an audience.. Although obviously influenced by other
northern indie artists such as Arctic Monkeys, and with a voice not dissimilar to that of
Kelly Jones from the Stereophonics, he is not simply a mimic. His songs have both grit and
charm, and avoid becoming too self-indulgent. However, his performance often lacked
dynamism, at times becoming simply a barrage of sound. McCulloch is a young talent, who
has laid the foundations for future success.
9/8/08 - Three Weeks - Two Americans loose thier shirts... Free doesn't always guarantee quality, but this particular show is
well worth a visit. The main act, Liam McEneaney, is an experienced comic cast in a
similar mould to Kevin Smith: American, geeky and very funny. The material is simple,
focusing mostly on his childhood, his relationships and therapy with 'Death of a
Salesman', but his take and delivery are exquisite. The show suffers from 'Edinburgh
Problems' - an awkward room half full of noontime stragglers - even so, the show is
seriously funny. Not quite a celebrity yet, but if he gets the audiences I can't wait to
see his name in lights - if Brendon Burns or Glen Wool are too much for you give Liam and
his chums a try.
9/8/08 - Three Weeks - Lynn Ruth Miller
1. What is your 2008 show all about? I have three shows and
each one is about how it feels to be an old lady.
The first one is 'Granny's Gone Wild', a comedy show
discussing some of the unexpected challenges of approaching 75, such as remembering your
name or forgetting your teeth. It also discusses the changes in society from when I was a
The second is a storytelling show for grown-ups, part of the
Laughing Horse Free Festival programme. It is called 'Another Side Of The Mirror' and is
offered at 3.55 pm at the Argyle. I believe that everyone loves a good story about what it
was like in the thirties and forties when a loaf of bread cost 5p and the policeman was
your friend. I talk about antiquated customs like wedding nights, and when women didn't
have nipple rings.
The third show is 'Aging Is Amazing', also a Laughing Horse
Free Festival show at the Argyle. This is a series of songs glorifying old age. After all
who can do it better than I? I am there and loving every minute of it (as long as I don't
look in the mirror).
2. Why should we come and see it? This might be your last
chance to see someone who is almost 75 take off her clothes, remember a joke and tell a
story while throwing nappies at the audience all at one festival.
3. If your show was an Olympic sport, what would it be and
why? It would be an endurance contest and the prize would be a resuscitator.
4. What are you most looking forward to about this year's
Festival? Seeing everyone again and proving to my audiences that aging really can BE
amazing if you want it to be that way.
5. What are you least looking forward to about this year's
Festival? One of those unending rainstorms that start at dawn and do not end for two days.
This year I intend to bring my flippers and an inner tube.
6. What advice would you have for someone trying to navigate
the Fringe? Take one minute at a time.
7. What advice would you have for someone trying to survive
the Fringe? Breathe.
8. Describe your show in three words Edgy, inspirational,
9/8/08 - Three Weeks - Lional Ritchie Stand-up Star Injured
One from the Fringe emergency room, and news that one of
performers of 'This Stand-Up Show Belongs To Lionel Richie' had to be rushed to A&E
this week after an on-stage Tape Measure Extension injury.
This story possibly requires some background information. Presumably aware that there's a
lot of sporting events to compete with during the Fringe this year, the cast of this show
have developed a sport all of their own which has apparently caught the imagination of
both London and Edinburgh audiences. As I understand it contenders role out a metalic tape
measure into the air and continue to do so until it bends. The winner is the extender who
gets their tape highest in the air, so to speak.
The dangerous part of this sport, in case you
wondered, is when the tape snaps back into its box. It's then, as TSUSBTLR's Joe Baker
will tell you, that you need your wits about you. Baker: "It all happened so fast.
One minute I was 5cm from the world record. The next I was flat on my back in agony".
The tape had hit Baker's eye as it snapped back down to earth.
The good news is an impromtpu whip round among
the Free Festival audience raised enough cash to get Joe to hospital where his injured eye
was treated, and doctors advised use of goggles at all future TMW events. Baker concluded
by telling ThreeWeeks: "I'm not going to let this put me off. I'm just eager to get
back TME-ing as soon as possible".
Audience members at the Lionel Richie stand-up
show are invited to participate in the TME championships. Presumably we don't need to tell
you - mind your eyes.
8/8/08 - Three Weeks - Including features with Andrew J. Lederer and Anna Victoria
8/8/08 - Independant
- Andrew J. Lederer Quted in the Edinburgh Diary http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/theatre/features/julian-halls-edinburgh-festival-diary-887019.html
8/8/08 - Three Weeks - Bringing in the
Sheep 'Bringing In The
Sheep' is something of a contradiction. With its barrel-bottom scraping puns, broad,
repetitive jokes and ramshackle tomfoolery it should be awful, but its flaws
(self-conscious as they are), are all cancelled out by the overwhelming energy and charm
of Milligan and his accomplices. My initial scepticism was lost somewhere between throwing
plastic axes at a werewolf stand-up and being asked to judge the purity of someone's beard
whilst ringing a giant bell. I began to find myself chuckling in places that I wouldn't
normally. In short, it was cracking good fun. Comedy purists need not apply, but if you're
looking for cheap thrills with buckets of enthusiasm then look no further.
8/8/08 - Three Weeks - Stranger than
Fiction In a world with a surfeit of
girls with guitars, it's refreshing to find a talented performer such as Kayla Kavanagh.
Playing a variety of instruments in addition to singing in a sweet clear voice, Kavanagh
uses technology to become a 'one woman band'. This use of technology is extensive, and
while slightly distracting, the end results are impressive. These songs of love and
longing are built into harmonies with a multiple layering of sound, both vocal and
instrumental and the result, certainly in the case of 'Colour Me In', is beautiful. The
formal layout of the venue doesn't do this show justice, though; an outside venue would
fit better and contrast the acoustic versus live technology of her performance skills. She
fully engages with her bright, breezy manner, however.
8/8/08 - Three Weeks - Waxing Cynical Initially this show resembled a poorly-organised rehearsed reading:
the performers were badly lit, looked uncomfortable in the space, and seemed partially
drowned out by over-enthusiastic air conditioning. However, the two actors warmed to their
piece, which was nicely written and had some fairly funny moments. Anna Victoria is very
watchable onstage, and this felt like it should be a one-woman show; it seemed odd that
every so often 'her' story was taken over by a male, until half-way through when she
begins to rehash an old relationship, and having the other actor on stage begins to be
justified. The play definitely improved as it went on, and Victoria's writing, which first
found acclaim at last year's Fringe, still shows great potential.
8/8/08 - The Groggy Squirrel - Shelley Cooper
7/8/08 - The Scotsman - Free Festival
Football match http://news.scotsman.com/theguide/Festival-footy-is-game-for.4366393.jp
7/8/08 - Edinburgh Evening News - Free
Festival Football match http://edinburghnews.scotsman.com/theguide/Festival-footy-is-game-for.4366393.jp
7/8/08 - The Scotsman - Waxing Cynical http://news.scotsman.com/edinburghfestivalfringe/Theatre-review-Waxing-Cynical.4365363.jp
7/8/08 - Three Weeks - Lunchtime Laughs From the
friendly opening by avuncular Harold-from-Neighbours-alike Rycroft, it's clear that this
isn't going to be the slickest show in the Festival. The rough edges are easily made up
for, however, by the warmth of Rycroft and his colleague, the posh (voiced) Saville. The
pair enthusiastically analyse their own work and convey the impression that they are
thrilled just to have an audience. In a festival where some jaded comics deliver mediocre,
over-familiar routines and charge a fortune for a ticket, genuine grassroots comedy is
precious and should be nurtured; perhaps acts like this are the solution to surviving the
credit crunch in Edinburgh. Go on: brave the road works to bask in free comedy sunshine in
7/8/08 - Three Weeks - Abandoman - A Hip
Hop Comedy If you've ever wanted someone to write a folk hip-hopera about your
life, now's your chance. Be prepared to participate as Rob Broderick chats charmingly to
his audience, and then uses the juiciest bits to improvise a rap with a folk music
soundtrack. While his rhymes may falter occasionally, his quick wit spits out fantastical,
funny tales that veer off in all sorts of imaginative and surprising directions. And there
are psychedelic hand-puppets to finish. With a tiny audience of just three people, the
performance I saw was clearly even more bizarre and intimate than usual, yet Broderick
still had bags of confidence that proved infectious. With a deservedly larger crowd, this
free show could be a winner.
6/8/08 - Hairline - I Kissed a Frog and it gave me herpes http://hairline.org.uk/2008/08/05/i-kissed-a-frog-and-it-gave-me-herpes/
6/8/08 - Three Weeks - Return of the
Down in the basement of a wonderfully creepy bar, three comedians will try and keep you
entertained, sadly not in mouse costumes. Henry Ginsberg's self-deprecating humour had us
laughing from the go, pretty good for a man who has been likened to "the fat guy from
Lost". Sadly, the same cannot be said for our second offering, Richard King, who read
off a sheet of paper and seemed confused as how to order a gig in a coherent fashion, some
jokes being desperately obscene rather than funny. Tommy Mack, the final comedian made up
for the failings of Richard, though I got the sense nerves had kicked in for the first
gig. Maybe they should go for the mouse costumes.
6/8/08 - Three Weeks - The FreeThree With the eager, grinning, wide-eyed
mania of Andrew Wallace, the ice-cold dead-pannery of Julian Deane and the 100mph
character ramblings of Imran Yusuf, 'The Free Three' make a satisfyingly diverse cocktail
of style and substance. Subject matter ranges from the absurd and surreal to the very
political, and the laughs are strong and steady. Each comic is not without their flaws,
though; Wallace is prone to overkill in parts, Deane's set loses direction on occasion and
Yusuf's terrorist material and race jokes sometimes feel tired and done-to-death.
Nevertheless there are three bright comics here, and plenty to please a wide palette of
tastes - a bit like Neapolitan ice-cream, really.
6/8/08 - Three Weeks - Phil Ellis Looking at pictures of your own family might just about be
interesting, but can someone else's be funny? Stand-up Phil Ellis thinks so, and his show
explores his frankly bonkers family tree as he tries to discover the root of his OCD. It's
amusingly accompanied by a slide-show of grainy snaps featuring sports days, Blackpool,
and dodgy seventies moustaches. The comedian's family provides him with plenty of
material: he directs his casually cutting humour at anything from his aunt getting
strangled by a tramp to his father's foster-care trauma. Ellis is a likeable figure, and
this show is reminiscent of listening to a mate - albeit your funniest mate - just talking
about their family. But like that experience, it is also free.
6/8/08 - Three Weeks - Answering the ThreeWeeks Quick Quiz
today... Dave Bloustein
is your 2008 show all about?
Roughly, it's about Africa, religion and the charity industry. Specifically, it's about an
2. Why should we come and see
Because it's free, it's your best hope of feeling morally superior about global inequality
without doing anything about it and because every night you don't, I will personally maim
3. If your show was an Olympic
sport, what would it be and why?
Solo Synchronised Swimming: it's funny to watch, yet surprisingly few people know about
4. What are you most looking
forward to about this year's Festival?
It's my very first Festival, I'm going it alone and have no idea what to expect.
5. What are you least
looking forward to about this year's Festival?
It's my very first Festival, I'm going it alone and have no idea what to expect.
6. What advice would you have
for someone trying to navigate the Fringe?
Find me and we'll navigate it together. And if we get lost in the streets of Edinburgh, we
can rub up against each other for warmth.
7. What advice would you have
for someone trying to survive the Fringe?
From what I've heard, take a flare and a year's worth of canned goods and water.
8. Describe your show in three
Save the puppies.
Dave Bloustein, Laughing Horse @
Espionage, 31 Jul 9 Aug, 7.10pm (8.10pm), free, fpp44.
6/8/08 - The Scotsman - Reccomends the best Storytellers... http://living.scotsman.com/recommends/Best-Festival-storyteller.4360063.jp
5/8/08 - The Scotsman - Two American
Comedians loose thier Shirts... http://news.scotsman.com/edinburghfestivalfringe/Comedy-review-Two-American-Comedians.4356923.jp
5/8/08 - Three Weeks - Comedy O'Clock I'm not
generally a fan of female comics, but Hannah George and Catie Wilkins have banished some
of my prejudices by proving that women can indeed be funny when given a mic and an
audience. Alongside them, Richard Bond made a convincingly amusing case about the below
average size of his penis (though having only yesterday heard a comic compare himself to
Tintin and a 12-year-old in the same sentence it felt a bit unoriginal, though I don't
suppose he can be blamed for that coincidence). The real star of the show was Nick Helm,
who was, in the best way possible, an excited 12 year old on stage, nervous, energetic and
a fan of pointless games. This show made me laugh, and that's all you're asking for right?
4/8/08 - The Groggy Squirrel - The Odd
4/8/08 - The Stage - Best things in life are Free - The Stage quotes the Guardian Quoting Alex Petty, Free Fest
4/8/08 - The Scotsman - Dave Bloustein http://news.scotsman.com/edinburghfestivalfringe/Comedy-review-Dave-Bloustien-Beastly.4353447.jp
4/8/08 - Chortle - Tommy Mackay Edinburgh
4/8/08 - The Guardian - The rise of Free
shows in Edinburgh http://www.guardian.co.uk/culture/2008/aug/04/edinburghfestival
3/8/08 - Three Weeks - Hurricane Katrina There is no excuse not to
go see Hurricane Katrina; this blisteringly funny character comedy show is funnier than
many shows from the big names of the festival, and what's more, it's absolutely free! The
succession of different characters - Katrina's fictional multiple personalities - serve as
vehicles for a rapid fire bombardment of hilariously cutting jokes, just on the right side
of inappropriate. From time to time Katrina builds up a sense of pathos for her creations,
only to pull the rug from under you with a devastating punchline. The only disappointment
is that the entire performance is only half an hour long. This show deserves more
exposure, and a bigger audience, so go see it, then tell your friends, and go see it
3/8/08 - Three Weeks - No Comedy for Old
Cheered on by enthusiastic locals and some Celts outside
the venue for good measure (yes, there is performer/audience interaction - that's how I
know!) this is clearly the comedy event to go to if you want to mingle with the natives.
The predictable themes of Bush, asylum seekers and sex are all covered but the toilet
paper raffle ending is one hundred percent unique, as is a hilarious account by O'Boyle on
Irish in-breeding (I'm Cornish, I understand).This may not be the cleverest or the
funniest show on the Fringe but it sums up what the festival is all about: friends who
love to have a laugh together, cold pint of beer, good atmosphere... and all for the
bargain price of nothing!
3/8/08 - Three Weeks - Lynn Ruth Miller This is a beautiful and inspiring show - a masterclass not only in
storytelling, but in how to live and look at your life. Lynn Ruth Miller apparently has
something of a reputation at the Fringe - in her outrageous stand up and cabaret shows,
the 75-year-old entertainer is Queenie the stripping granny - but this is an altogether
more intimate and intelligent affair. Ushered into a small basement below a pub, Miller
emerges with a glint in her eye and begins to relate her stories to us with the edge of an
experienced raconteur. We are drawn in deep - Miller is a captivating storyteller with an
intelligent perspective on her colourful life. To hear these stories for free is almost
2/8/08 - The Scotsman - Alex Petty talks
about Free shows http://news.scotsman.com/scotland/Roaring-Harleys-to-lead-.4351883.jp
2/8/08 - The Scotsman - Pick of the
Bargains: Jay Gees Jamboree, His
Snurglegurk and Other Stuff, Edinburgh City Football Club, August 18-25; Mr Mojo, Mum and
Me, The Counting House, August 4; Rebecca Fawcett Art Display, Edinburgh City Football
Club, August 1-25; Laughing Horse Free Pick of The Fringe, Espionage, August 1-25 http://news.scotsman.com/scotland/Roaring-Harleys-to-lead-.4351883.jp
2/8/08 - Fringe Report - 2007 Free
Fest perfromer Siren Turner writes about her experiences http://www.fringereport.com/art0808sirenturnerbellydancer.php
31/7/08 - The
Scotsman - Alex Petty in the Scotman -
Burning issues: The Fringe Box office Fiasco http://news.scotsman.com/edinburghfestivalfringe/Burning-Issue-Has-the-ticket.4337004.jp
30/7/08 - The
Scotsman - Best New Fringe Venues: LAUGHING
HORSE @ESPIONAGE, 4 India Buildings, Victoria Street, (0131) 477 7007
www.freefestival.co.uk Sadly, the Free Festival has lost Lindsay's, the posties' union,
which was their centre of operations. But organiser Alex Petty is hoping great things will
come from this new venue. The Free Festival has expanded its programme to include music
and theatre and the venue will incorporate a free festival club.
30/7/08 - The
Scotsman - Best Freebies: www.freefestival.co.uk
shows are free to audiences, venues do not charge fees to performers. The Free
Festival is hosting 157 shows with an expanded programme which now includes
childrens shows, a free nightclub and an opera. Performers tend to pass round a hat
at the end of every show but there is no pressure and youll enjoy the relaxed
and friendly atmosphere.
30/7/08 - The
Scotsman - Best Late Night Comedy Clubs: Meadow
Bar, 42-44 Buccleuch Street, Edinburgh, 0131 667 6907 www.laughinghorsecomedy.co.uk One of the
nicest things about the Free Fringe is the sense of community which makes for a
very relaxed and supportive atmosphere on club nights. This late-night show goes on till
1am and is described as "Edinburgh's most intimate late-night show".
28/7/08 - Chortle
- Abandoman (Brighton Fringe Review 2008)
28/7/08 - Chortle
- Beastly (Adelaide Festival Review
28/7/08 - Chortle Front Page - Free
Festival show Tartan Special have a sponsorship
deal with Walkers Shortbread which means they have to sing A Finger Of Shortie Is All You
Need during every performance.
27/8/08 - Sunday
Herald - Anna Victoria and Ruby Summers
By night they tread the boards at the Fringe ... by day they lead dramatically
different lives... http://www.sundayherald.com/search/display.var.2410343.0.secret_lives.php
27/7/08 - Broadway
Baby - Infanta: A users Guide
(Brighton Fringe Festival Review 2008) http://www.broadwaybaby.com/fringe/reviews/infantausersguide
27/7/08 - Broadway
Baby - I Kissed a Frog and it Gave me Herpes 2008 (Brighton Fringe Festival
Review 2008) http://www.broadwaybaby.com/fringe/reviews/ikissedafroganditgavemeherpes
The Scotsman Reccomends - Free
The Herald Diary - Phil
Buckley and the dangers of hooped earings http://www.theherald.co.uk/features/diary/display.var.2406597.0.going_to_the_dogs.php
The Herald Diary - Story
about Sajeela Kershi and her show Race Off
Theatredogs.com - Article about Lynn Ruth Miller
Edfringe.com - Article about Lynn Ruth Miller http://www.edfringe.com/story.html?id=2352&area_id=31
|19/7/08 - Three
Weeks eWeekly - Free Festival run-down
Laughing Horse Free Festival Venues
|Box Office number: There's
a different for each venue, see below...
|Who programmes your venue?
Alex Petty, Free Festival Artistic Director
|What buildings are you running
Espionage (venue 185) 0131 4777 007; The Argyle (venue 353) 0131 221 9759; The Meadow Bar
(Venue 264) 0131 667 6907; The Jekyll & Hyde (venue 259) 0131 225 2022; Meridian
(venue 305) 0131 555 3084; Edinburgh City Football Club (venue 164) 0131 556 9628; The
Counting House (venue 170) and the Pear Tree (part of the Counting House complex) both
0131 667 7533.
|How many shows have you got this
158 shows, 2626 performances.
cafes/bars are you running this year?
There's at least one bar at each of our venues, and all the venues serve food and snacks.
Espionage has four bars and late night club until 5am, the rest are open until between 1am
and 3am, all from July 31st to Aug 25th. The Pear Tree has a wonderful out door courtyard,
and The Football club has probably the cheapest drinks in Edinburgh.
|What is your artistic ethos -
how do you pick shows?
To have a good quality and mixed programme across all Fringe genres (although this does
reflect on our comedy background by being 80% comedy this year). To run the best quality
possible free shows in a professional environment (free shouldn't mean unprofessional),
while still supporting newer performers coming through for their first fringe shows. Shows
are selected by myself from my work on the comedy circuit during the year (the same team
who run Free festival run Laughing Horse comedy through the year), plus other people who
have an expertise in theatre and music help to select those shows we had over 300
show applications this year.
|What are your 2008 programme
Steve Day back for a third year; Ivor Dembina's Jewish/Palestinian comedy show; the
unlisted show Anthology daily story-telling from acts like Jo Caufield, Richard
Herring, Scott Capuro; the reprise of highly regarded 'I Kissed A Frog And It Gave Me
Herpes' from 2007; Alexis Dubas' 'Fine Sketchup' featuring top sketch acts from across the
Fringe including if.comeddie nominees Pappy's Fun Club; The Late show at the Meadow Bar
true late night Fringe madness from 1am to 3am; ComedySportz Family friendly
|What makes your venue extra
We think, we've got a great selection of shows this year, our fifth anniversary of running
free venues. Probably the best quality and most diverse since we started in 2004, and
every single one of them is free.
venue in three words: Funny, Free, Festival
The List - Reccomend shows, with 'tittyfalarious' titles -
"I Kissed a frog and it gave me
herpes - Amphians and infections ahoy in Esopionage"; "The B*llocks of
Liechtenstein - You've got to wonder what they look like at the ECFC"
The List - Free Festival shows "delights costing
nil pounds". "After a
successful show [sic] at last years Fringe, Laughing horse comedy return with daily free
comedy club shows at eight venues across the city, as part of the Free Festival, which
this year adds theatre and music to it's roster. Comedy highlights include Ivor Dembina
and Dan Willis while Theatre intrigues number a production of Jim Cartwrights Two and a
show about the Daftest job in football Dodgy Keeper. Music delights include the kiss and
tell cabaret of Ruby Summers"
Evening News - Free Festival musician
Kayla Kavanagh http://edinburghnews.scotsman.com/entertainment/Musician--on-song-for.4292384.jp
Three Weeks eWeekly - Free Festival preview & Links.
"A large variety of acts, including shows
from a number of Fringe veterans such as Andrew J Lederer and Ivor Dembina"
Sotsman - Bavarian Tradition show in the diary http://news.scotsman.com/edinburghfestivalfringe/Tim-Cornwell39s-diary-Hollywood-legend.4280728.jp
Edinburgh Evening News - Article about Lynn Ruth Miller http://news.scotsman.com/entertainment/75yearold-reveals-plans-for-strip.4279495.jp
11/7/08 - The
Times - Article about Lynn Ruth Miller
The Argus - Ivor Dembina's Preview in Brighton http://www.theargus.co.uk/search/display.var.2382404.0.ivor_dembina_komedia_studio_bar_brighton_july_5.php
1/7/08 - Metro
- Ivor Dembina's
Preview in Leicester http://www.metro.co.uk/metrolife/article.html?in_article_id=199010&in_page_id=272
- Dodgy Keeper Review from the North Devon Fringe - "This
was an outstanding performance, full of energy and engagement, poetry and pathos. I
laughed at, but was also gripped by his re-enactment of the marital rows and of his
philosophy - I will change
.tomorrow - centred on a
fateful Saturday afternoon when
it seemed that his whole life rested on his performance between the sticks, the match
result and a bet on a horse. Dodgy Keeper has the pace, the chants, the characters and the
drama. Go and see what happens."
- Daniel Sloss in the Evening News http://edinburghnews.scotsman.com/theguide/Teenage-kicks-for-standup-Daniel.4135096.jp
- Free Fest online Programme Launch covered by Fringe Report
You can have a look at some of last years news
and reviews - click here for 2007's press and reviews!