Jake Morrell

Jake Morrell

Hailing originally from East Anglia (“the sticky out bit of Britain… that isn’t Wales”, as it was helpfully described), Jake Morrell and his Magnificent Band’s musical exploits hit the Fringe’s final week... 

Jason Manford - First World Problems

Jason Manford - First World Problems

After an unassuming entrance where he wanders onstage in jeans and a checked shirt, Jason Manford thrust aside his microphone stand and quipped “Alright chairs in here, aren’t they? Do your best not to fall asleep”... 

Flanders and Swann

Flanders and Swann

Flanders and Swann’s songs occupy a strange position in British consciousness: some are well renowned and regularly emerge on adverts, whilst others are forgotten gems only known and loved by a select few... 

Baconface - It’s All Bacon!

Baconface - It’s All Bacon!

It’s the worst kept secret at this year’s Fringe that the UK debut of little-known alternative 80s comedian Baconface is in fact enormously well-known alternative comedian Stewart Lee... 

Who Are You Supposed To Be?

Who Are You Supposed To Be?

For many people, a date in August had been looming. A date marking an event of history. Televisual history, at any rate. Said date does not mark a moon landing, a royal coronation or an election... 

The 27 Club

The 27 Club

The 27 Club as a concept is comprised of a much revered collection of musicians who died aged 27. The event is much the same: A four-piece band on bass, guitar, drums and piano emerge... 

Shostakovich Late

Shostakovich Late

Any venue that gives out wine on entry is likely to endear itself to the audience, but ROSL on Princes Street is endearing even without such generosities; a delightful space lined with patterned wallpaper and mirrors facing a small stage where the evening’s musical accompaniment was to be performed from... 

Gareth Richards: Gareth Goes Electric

Gareth Richards: Gareth Goes Electric

A show title that implies a comparison between Bob Dylan and a minor comedian is clearly a rather ambitious, even presumptuous one. Though comical titular musical comedian Gareth Richards’ own Going Electric (symbolised by him moving in his opening song from small plastic electric instrument the ‘ElectroChord’ to the small plastic electric instrument the ‘QChord’) is amusing, you suspect it is unlikely to be one viewed with quite the same historical significance... 

Grounded

Grounded

Grounded is the tale of a female fighter pilot (Lucy Ellinson) who loves the freedom of the blue sky. However, after falling pregnant during a brief jaunt on leave, she takes maternity leave and returns after her pregnancy to discover she has been shifted sideways into the ignominious position of drone pilot... 

Set List: Stand-Up Without a Net

Set List: Stand-Up Without a Net

Setlist is just a bloody good idea. This much is clear. Forcing well-known stand-ups to squirm as they invent routines based on hilarious audience suggestions is always going to be an amusing watch... 

Quietly

Quietly

Plays based on historical and significant conflicts often tend toward the bombast and spectacle: either exploring the actions and feelings of the major players in positions of power or else looking at the predicament of the many... 

Morning and Afternoon

Morning and Afternoon

A cynic would suggest that a one-man show written and performed by an acclaimed director is one likely to fall into certain pitfalls; history is littered with those who have stepped nobly out from the chair or from behind the camera to disastrous effect... 

Sans Salomé

Sans Salomé

Who doesn’t love a good meta-play? One of three Fourth Monkey plays up this year, San Salome has two parallel storylines: Oscar Wilde attempting to stage his controversial late work Salome just prior to his incarceration running alongside that of a bickering lesbian couple is an intriguing and elegant production... 

The Boy Who Kicked Pigs

The Boy Who Kicked Pigs

‘New writing? New wronging!’ proudly exclaims production company Kill The Beast’s website. This delighted and demented expression is one that sums the style of The Boy Who Kicked Pigs well... 

Alex Horne: Lies

Alex Horne: Lies

As he confesses in the opening lines of his show, Alex Horne ‘hates stand-up’. (This is a lie). Nobody who hates stand-up can be quite this good at it. There are many such lies throughout... 

The  Beta Males in ... Superopolis

The Beta Males in ... Superopolis

The concept sketch show has been gaining prevalence at the Fringe in recent years, and key proponents of this must be Betamales. It is a serendipitous but also perilous position to be both critics’ darlings and fan favourites, but Superopolis justifies the hype as a real tour de force of sketch comedy... 

The Improverts

The Improverts

Bursting onstage in a blaze of colour, noise and applause at half past midnight in Bedlam, the Improverts return once more to the Fringe. For a show that has been at the Fringe in one guise or another for twenty three previous years, it was amusing to note immediately that none of the five strong male cast appeared old enough to have been born for their show’s inception... 

Awkward!

Awkward!

Nominative determinism is a theory that someone’s name will influence or even dictate their life. Followers of said theory might have noted that Awkward!, a new piece of writing from young theatre company Peppered Wit Productions, was doomed to uncooperativity from the start... 

Eleanor Conway's Midnight Rumble

Eleanor Conway's Midnight Rumble

Even in the death throes of the Fringe, it seems nobody is prepared to sleep at a sane hour. Indeed perhaps it is in this obstinate refusal to accept the dying of the proverbial or literal light that a fair mass of punters pack into Eleanor Conway’s Midnight Rumble, a talk-show stand-up bonanza... 

Romeo and Juliet

Romeo and Juliet

It is generally accepted that the best facet of Shakespeare’s work and what has made him stand the test of time is his verse. One would therefore have to question the logic behind staging a re-telling of one of his most famous works of verse that is a re-telling in the literal sense... 

Battlefield Band

Battlefield Band

‘An oasis in the Fringe… with bagpipes’ is how piper and most talkative Battlefield Band member Alasdair White described their show. There is much in this statement: set away from the stretch of the Royal Mile and Cowgate in The Queen’s Hall, this is not strictly speaking a Fringe show... 

Tim Key - Masterslut

Tim Key - Masterslut

The audience quietly filed in to see Tim Key pacing the stage like a panther, brandishing a rose like an inept but enthusiastic fencer and weaving around his microphone stand, a large and disconcertingly full bubble bath and the shuffling spectators... 

Greg Proops

Greg Proops

Back at the Fringe for the twentieth year in a row from his native San Francisco, Greg Proops is a veteran who has spent years on the comedy circuit in a variety of roles and an ever wider variety of shows... 

One Rogue Reporter

One Rogue Reporter

One Rogue Reporter describes its presenter Rich Peppiatt’s progression from Daily Star lackey to vehement tabloid terror. The sardonic nod in the title to the ludicrous defence given by numerous hacks squirming in the stand at the Leveson Inquiry is a sign that they will not be given an easy ride... 

Tiddler and Other Terrific Tales

Tiddler and Other Terrific Tales

Tiddler and Other Terrific Tales immerses children and parents alike into a world of wonder. Set inside the towering Underbelly tent this pleasingly mature and intelligent childrens show explored a variety of folk tales... 

On the Edge

On the Edge

‘This is much more than just a tale of physical erosion off the coast’, promises the flyer for newly written play On the Edge. A first facetious thought is ‘you would hope so’, but in the end it is a relevant line because it sums this production up: in its quest to be a quirky tale it becomes a strange mix of styles that, while often interesting, never quite sticks... 

Miss Marchbanks

Miss Marchbanks

Tight collars and tighter dialogue were on display as Charlotte Productions continued their ‘adaptations of forgotten literature’ with Miss Marchbanks, a delightful romp of a Victorian play that managed to fulfil its potential whilst belying its stuffy roots... 

Auld Alliance

Auld Alliance

At the beginning of the The Consort of Voices, the Edinburgh-based choir providing the music for this concert, strode in dramatically from the back of the church led by their bashful conductor, who explained the provenance of each song before they began... 

Austerity Pleasures

Austerity Pleasures

This show consisted of political satire. As if the title and a flyer depicting comics Alex Chapman and Ben Morgan inserted into a Socialist Realism poster starring David Cameron’s shiny face in the sky wasn’t enough, it opened with an alternative slideshow of Twitter-suggested political pun titles for the show... 

Born to be Mild

Born to be Mild

Stand Up Hero and The World Stand-Up’s performer Andrew Watts is angry. He’s angry because he was due to go on Sky 1s trap-door comedy talent show Don’t Stop Me Now where stand-ups must make audiences laugh or be sent to fall into obscurity... 

Neil Delamere: DelaMere Mortal

Neil Delamere: DelaMere Mortal

Delamere Mortal is a stand-up show with a difference. The conceit is its basis around the comic’s two appearances as a teenager on mid 90s Irish schools quiz show Blackboard Jungle... 

Rosie Wilby - How (Not) To Make It In Britpop

Rosie Wilby - How (Not) To Make It In Britpop

How much do you know about obscure mid 90s Britpop band Wilby? Not much? Evidently anyone with a real niche interest in obscure Britpop bands should make it their business to find out more and it is providing this niche need that Rosie Wilby bases her part story-telling, part stand-up biopic of her former life as a Britpop songstress... 

Once Upon A Time...

Once Upon A Time...

‘Improv Comedy’, for a genre whose very definition implies limitless scope, seems to be becoming an increasingly tired medium. An over-reliance on the safety net of “games” coupled with rigorous structuring can leave an audience wondering exactly what future improvisation has... 

Abigoliah Schamaun: Girl Going to Hell

Abigoliah Schamaun: Girl Going to Hell

When extremely enthusiastic New York comic Abigoliah Schamaunn bounded in “from the back of the room to the front of the room!”, her iPod stopped dead as she arrived onstage. “That’s the only moment of perfect timing in the show” she quipped seconds before it roared into life again and drowned out the rest of her sentence... 

Chris Dangerfield: Sex Tourist

Chris Dangerfield: Sex Tourist

A common adage given to budding creative writers is “Write what you know” to allow for the honesty and candour that makes your output more accessible. It is certainly in the name of honesty and candour that Chris Dangerfield, self-proclaimed former heroin addict and current sex tourist and his less-stand-up-more-a-collection-of-earnest-and-repugnant anecdotes takes to the Hive stage... 

Austen George

Austen George

‘I haven’t played original stuff for a while’ was Austen George’s mumbled apology to the Acoustic Music Centre audience after encountering difficulty remembering his chords in his opening song... 

Breabach

Breabach

After striding into the Assembly Ballroom to tumultuous applause, guitarist Ewan Robertson’s wry remark was, ‘Hope you enjoyed the dramatic entrance there.’ The chuckles of the audience mixed with the four other band members who make up celebrated highland folk band Breabach perfectly encapsulated the warm and winsome evening to follow... 

Scotch Broth

Scotch Broth

A gaggle of children charged into Paradise at the Vault for Scotch Broth, promised sing-a-long fun with long-time Fringe performer Dennis Alexander. A tartan trouser-clad Alexander bearing a guitar, kazoo and innumerable yo-yos gave a creditable effort of balancing the twin concerns of organising the children and letting them have fun... 

Remember Me

Remember Me

The “romantic and provocative” Remember Me, while initially a little obtuse, strikes a neat balance between art installation, audible sensation and theatrical performance. It was staged within Summerhall’s sombre “Black Tent”, a large steel and canvas structure whose name grew even more apt upon entering its dim insides, where the audience sit lit sparsely by muted spots...