Day 25 at the Fringe – 23rd August 2014

Tis late and technically my birthday (as it’s past midnight) so I am not going to spend the usual two hours on this blog, (she types hopefully) especially as my wee netbook is stubbornly refusing to pick up the WIFI here in our B & B in Minto Street tonight so I am being forced to use my tablet for this update and the keyboard can be a bit of a pain.

I was completely out of it this morning when Dave left for the day.

He was fitting in two shows at the Free Sisters before spending the rest of the day at the Pleasance Courtyard at their That venue. His first two shows were Oxford Imps at 10 am and Ray Fordyce’s Brunchtime Banter.

This was his second visit to the Oxford Imps, an improvised musical. According to the notes he gave me earlier it was completely different but just as good. Death by Snowglobe!

Then his second show, Ray Fordyce’s Brunchtime Banter. Dave’s notes are a bit sporadic/not very clear here so I’m just going to list the names he’s written down: Bob Graham, Genevieve, Pablos, Danny Mitchell, Nick Cranston (from Sunderland!). If any of those are wrong, I apologise and I will sort it out when I see him – he’s currently still at the Late Show in the Cabaret Bar at the PC, due to finish at 2 am, but then he’s still got to get home!

The original plan for today was that I was having a few hours to meet some friends for lunch over in the New Town and then doing a show on my own at 6.30 pm (Susan Calman at the Underbelly, Bristo Square, Topside), then meeting Dave down at the PC by 8.15 pm for three shows at  their That space, but the lunch plans went a bit haywire and so I texted Dave to tell him I’d amuse myself for a few hours and toddled back over the North Bridge to the Old Town again, ran up to Piemaker just as a really heavy shower started and had a vegan savoury (and a free cookie because it was their 20th birthday, hurray!) and a cup of tea while sitting on one of their high stools inside – it was heaving it down outside – I’m not completely daft! 

After that I picked up some food and drink for Dave and trotted down to the Pleasance Courtyard (PC) thinking I could catch him at 3 pm coming out of Years to the Day. However I was there around 2.40 pm and the door staff there told me it was running about ten mins over so I went and sat in the Bunker Bar with a diet coke ( oh – I know how to rock and roll!) and was having a chat to a couple of people about shows we’d seen when my youngest son rang me (it was his birthday yesterday!). Just as I’d hung up on him I checked FB again to find a message to say that a meet up was still on the cards so I waited for Dave to come out, thrust a baguette and a bottle of water at him, and took off back over to the New Town again! I had a lovely couple of hours with some nice people, then got myself back up to Bristo Square, where I had to ask for directions to the Underbelly Topside for my 6.30 pm show!

So, to backtrack again – I really must learn to sequence events in some sort of chronological order (!!), while I had been trotting about the city, and before I caught him coming out of YttD, Dave had seen A Slight Ache – a three person play starring Simon Munnery, Thom Tuck and Catriona Knox. He reported it as “Very good with an unexpected twist”. It looks like it’s running till the 25th so is worth a viewing if you can get tickets!

He’d then seen the aforementioned Years to the Day which was a two man play about two American friends meeting up after a long time. Dave reports this as “brilliant”. It has one day left to run (Sun 24th) so if you want a powerful drama, this is probably the one for you. Ten to two at the PC “That”

Then he’d seen Surname and Surname – I’m not doing any anymore ticket links tonight, it is late and I’m shattered (I mapped out how far I’d walked in total today and it was 6.45 miles and I have a running event tomorrow!) so Google the show names with Edinburgh Fringe added to the search terms – that’s all I’m doing! Dave said that S and S was a two person sketch show, very elaborate, unfortunately not overly funny.

Then onto the Twins Macabre. Highly anticipated but failed to deliver. A bit of a mess and not very funny.

At 5.45 pm he was in That again to see Lucy Beaumont: We Can Twerk it Out. Dave says it was “Quirky and fantastic. Well deserving of best newcomer nomination.” so nice one Lucy!

Then, while I was up at the Topside seeing Susan Calman, Dave was seeing more sketch with Lazy Susan. Two ladies who he said were the sketch highlight of the day. “Lovely callbacks, running characters and even puppet interludes. Hilarious”.

So – Susan Calman and her show Lady Like. She is a lovely Glaswegian lady who was playing to a packed room. Star of Radio 4 and various panel shows, Susan makes no secret of the fact that she is gay. We had anecdotes about her background growing up and of how she doesn’t always like herself. Extremely watchable and very funny – I enjoyed this a lot. 

Then at last, I was back down to the PC “That” to meet up with Dave and go in together to Ivo Graham’s Bow Ties and Johnnies. Ivo is a young comic who was privately educated for large parts of his life, including at Eton College. We’ve seen Ivo before several times and he is an extremely bright comic talent, erudite, ultra literate, and with a very cleverly written show around his early life and about his (eventual) love interest. Brilliant work from a young man who I am predicting will be famous on TV very soon. I think he’s fairly well sold out but if you see his name near you get in there and see him while he’s still unknown and not too expensive!

Next we had Yacine Belhousse: Made in France. I have to confess, not being too knowledgeable about French names, I was expecting a lady to come through the backdrop curtains – but no, I was completely wrong! Yacine was most definitely a bloke, and a Frenchman with very decent English. It takes courage to be a comedian in a different language – there are a million ways things could go wrong: tenses, pronounciation, puns, cultural differences – the list is horribly endless. Yacine triumphed. He’d warned us that past tense verbs might be an issue but that he would note them as we went along. Being surreal and whimsical in another language is also a skill that Yacine has mastered. A very enjoyable hour and I’ve nearly forgiven him about the chicken story – but not quite!

Mine and Dave’s last show together this evening was the splendidly surreal Mat Ewins: Six Million Dollar Ewins. How to describe? Hmmm, slightly chaotic (but all the funnier for it), Mat gave us the story of his death and rebuilding, all against a clock counting down to our imminent deaths by bombing. Would we find it and the evil, nasty bomber in time????? (Clue – I’m updating this blog). Master of making Dave and I (and the rest of his audiences) look at each other in total confusion (what is going on now????) Mat nevertheless always has his punters onside, happy to go along with whatever madcap version of the evening they are seeing. Please come back next year Mat!

It’s ten to three and Dave has not yet returned – he gave me a birthday kiss just after 12 midnight and was going off to the Late Show as mentioned above. I know that Hedluv and Passman (Fantastic Cornish rappers) were on the guest list as we saw them waiting to go into the venue but I don’t know who else.

I’m off tomorrow to do a running event in Meadowbank Stadium (Edinburgh Running Network’s LP run, 11am) and am not seeing any shows until 5pm at Cowgatehead. Jack Samuel Warner and John Pendal: Men and Myth. 

Running total of shows seen: Dave – 283, Carole – 209.

Night all!


BTW – this stuff is on sale in the Pleasance Courtyard and is delish. Gluten free, wheat free and vegan.

Just thought you should know!

Update: Late Show at the Pleasance 23/4/2014

Jo Caulfield and Mick Ferry co-hosting.

Line-up included Janey Godley (drat, I missed her. I would like to have heard this lady), the fab Hedluv and Passman (as previously stated), and Russell Hicks, an American who Dave said “wouldn’t get off the stage, had no material and talked total sh*te”. Ok, say what you think Dave!!






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