The Curse of Macbeth

The Curse of Macbeth

It is as inevitable as rain that each Fringe throws up new takes on Shakespeare’s Scottish play. In a city where nearly every native has studied the action at school, where a thousand other versions have been seen over the years, in which half the audience probably once appeared in, it there any point in trying to do something different? The answer provided by Cambridge ADC is a resounding yes... 

Adam Riches Rides!

Adam Riches Rides!

Riches creates a dazzling array of characters in Adam Riches Rides! The risk assessment forms for the Pleasance Beside may have to get rewritten following some of the audience interaction and for the sake of the health of his co-performers... 

Goring and Stokes: Nerds of a Feather

Goring and Stokes: Nerds of a Feather

Chris Stokes and Graham Goring have come together at the Caves just after lunch to present an hour of stand up, with Chris opening and Graham winding up. Goring & Stokes present ‘Nerds of a Feather’ as both to identify themselves as geeks or nerds, and go to some length to prove this, and indeed, to point out that everyone is geeky about something... 

Andy Zaltzman Swears to Tell the Truth, Half the Truth, and Everything But the Truth

Andy Zaltzman Swears to Tell the Truth, Half the Truth, and Everything But the Truth

Andy Zaltzman will be best know to most audiences for his political comedy, podcast and radio appearances. As the crowd comes into the Stand III, milling around, chatting, taking their seats or buying a beer, you become aware that rather than music playing, there’s a commentary going on... 

Betrayal of Penguins: Don't Run with Scissors

Betrayal of Penguins: Don't Run with Scissors

Betrayal of Penguins got some rave reviews for their Fringe appearance last year, so I was looking forward to seeing what was being presented this time. Featuring Irish duo, Ross Dungan and Matthew Smyth, Don’t Run with Scissors is a comedy narrative set in the final episode a long running kids TV show... 

Scottish Falsetto Sock Puppet Theatre - On The Telly

Scottish Falsetto Sock Puppet Theatre - On The Telly

How can a full house of adults be entertained for an hour by a couple of grey socks in a tartan Punch & Judy tent? Ask Kev Sutherland, the writer and performer, who returns for forth year with the bug eyed characters... 

Phil Nichol: Welcome to Crazytown

Phil Nichol: Welcome to Crazytown

Phil Nichol is Bobby Spade - legendary beat poet. In sparkling Edinburgh early evening sun Fringe-going Hep Cats need to get down to the Stand to dig this exceptional performance, which skilfully evokes the spirit of Jack Kerouac... 

Axis of Awesome: Songs in the Key of Awesome

Axis of Awesome: Songs in the Key of Awesome

The Axis of Awesome, Australia’s most tolerated comedy rock trio are back to they present their new show ‘Songs in the Key of Awesome’ in the Wine Bar at the Gilded Balloon. The Axis have built up a strong fan base for their Edinburgh shows and its not hard to see why - they have boundless energy and great rapport with each other and the audience... 

Find Love Make Love Die

Find Love Make Love Die

Four pupils await a class that will never start, in this new writing from Daniel Rayner, performed by Bleak Heart. As they engage in teenage bickering, chaos is unfolds outside as their fellow teachers and pupils tear each other to pieces in this take on the zombie genre... 

Double Booked

Double Booked

Got teenage kids to keep amused in Edinburgh? Then get down to the Pleasance Courtyard to see Ruth Rich’'s one woman show, Double Booked, for the ideal start to a fab family day out at the Fringe... 

Lovesong

Lovesong

Soul star Omar Lyefook shines in this dramatic one-man monologue, incorporating his music and songs in a tale of love lost and found.Written by Ché Walker, English Touring Theatre’s production is presented upstairs at the Pleasance Dome, in a perfect seedy nightclub setting... 

After The Bomb

After The Bomb

After the Bomb, ostensibly a 1950 spy piece, is presented by Cicero Productions at the Zoo Southside. The show starts well, with two communist spies meeting to plot an explosion, comparing horrific war experiences in the style of the Monty Python ‘we were so poor…’... 

Pete Johansson: Naked Pictures Of My Life

Pete Johansson: Naked Pictures Of My Life

Naked Pictures of my life is a no holds barred look at Pete’s life as he approaches middle age and starts to experience and think about aging. From his wife’s aggressive pregnant demands, to why you should never get a genital piercing, he lays himself bare in this show in the Underbelly... 

Fairy Liquid And The Burst Bubble ... And Other Science Shows

Fairy Liquid And The Burst Bubble ... And Other Science Shows

Science Shows for Schools have take three of their popular science presentations for schools and turned them into a 50 minute production for children at the Zoo Aviary. Starting with Fairy Liquid and the Burst Bubble, James Soper takes the children in the audience through some of science's big ideas in an accessible and engaging way... 

Ian Kendall's 18th Birthday Magic Show

Ian Kendall's 18th Birthday Magic Show

This is Ian Kendall’s 18th birthday magic show, having first shared his love of magic with Fringe audiences on the Mound back in 1992. As he comments, the Mound in 1992 was a very different place to how it is now... 

Randy's Postcards From Purgatory

Randy's Postcards From Purgatory

Poor old Randy. He's a boozed up Australian children's entertainer going through a mid life crisis. His relationship is in ruins, his finances are in trouble. He’s a foul mouthed mess... 

The Honeymoon

The Honeymoon

On my way into this show at Bedlam Theatre, the young man in front of me commented that he thought that the two actors we were about to see were the most talented that his university had produced... 

The Legend Of Magnificent Moon

The Legend Of Magnificent Moon

Toto tales, an Edinburgh-based company who aim to bring African tales to life, present the tale of Magnificent Moon to a young audience, targeted at children aged three and upwards... 

Tom Craine - Comfort Blanket

Tom Craine - Comfort Blanket

Tom Craine is a worrier. You can tell from the moment that he peeks out from the side of the stage to see that we have taken our seats, and hesitates until we start clapping. Tom Craine is also very nice... 

Comedy Bitch

Comedy Bitch

Comedy Bitch brings together six young actors, presenting brand new sketch comedy at the Underbelly - three women (Sophie Wright, Louise Howells and Hannah Gittos), three men (Jonathan Brook, Tom Lyall-Cottal and Ben Kewin) and a heck of a lot more than three big laughs... 

Rob Rouse: My Family ... And The Dog That Scared Jesus

Rob Rouse: My Family ... And The Dog That Scared Jesus

Rob Rouse, winner of 'So you think you're funny?' in 1998, returns to Edinburgh with his new show 'My family... and the dog that scared Jesus'. At this Thursday night preview he was playing to a near full capacity crowd at the Pleasance Above... 

Forgotten Things

Forgotten Things

There's much to commend in Red Ladder Theatre's 'Forgotten Things', written by Emma Adams. As a journey into a dysfunctional family, it is an absorbing experience with strong themes and difficult images... 

Kristin Hersh: Paradoxical Undressing

Kristin Hersh: Paradoxical Undressing

Rush on out and buy tickets to see Kristin Hersh at once. The indie rock goddess is honouring Edinburgh with a week long run of her show Paradoxical Undressing.Paradoxical Undressing, for the uninitiated, is the removal of clothes and warm coverings by those suffering severe hypothermia... 

Anna the Slut and the (almost) Chosen One

Anna the Slut and the (almost) Chosen One

Hunger Warrior Theatre, a group of young American Theatre professionals present this tale of lust and its dangers, written Andrew J Hungerford. It takes the Sumerian myth of Inanna, the goddess of sex, who, having descended to the underworld ruled by her sister Ereshkigal, is killed and has to send someone in her place to ascend back to the world of the living... 

A Brief History of Scotland - We Done Loads!

A Brief History of Scotland - We Done Loads!

God is Scottish. In fact, God is a Sean Connery sound-alike, and he created Scotland. And the rest of the world, but let’s face it, who cares about those ‘other continents’? Not the young cast of this show, who keep their feet firmly on Scottish ground... 

Summoned

Summoned

Lamp Lighters Productions from Toronto in Canada present this, the world premier of a piece written by and starring Irena Huljak.A one-woman show, Huljak plays Elona, a young woman brought up in Canada by her mysterious mother, who is cold to Elona, but warm to the rest of the world... 

Quincy: Single Mum

Quincy: Single Mum

Quincy is a single mum. Facing the difficulties and problems that come along with two young boys looking to be provided with food, love and support. Making those journeys to the school gates, keeping up with the grandparents... 

Bongo Club Cabaret

Bongo Club Cabaret

Before going to the Bongo Club I was a cabaret virgin. I certainly am not now. Our host and compare Des O’Conner (no, not that O’Connor) bounds on stage, resplendent in a white dinner suit, white make up and sequined black eyes, clutching a ukulele... 

Answers

Answers

Newcastle University Theatre Society presents a new piece of writing by Edward Clifton. The play opens with a Newsnight style interview of a backbench rebel, Andrew Woodman (Andrew McKeane), who intends to cause the government trouble with controversial new legislation designed to tackle extremism... 

Faulty Towers – The Dining Experience

Faulty Towers – The Dining Experience

Why on earth would anyone want to have a Fawlty Towers lunch? The classic 1970s sitcom featured deeply dysfunctional husband and wife hotel managers Basil and Sybil Fawlty, and their hapless Spanish waiter Manuel... 

The Golden Age of Magic

The Golden Age of Magic

Ian Kendall’s new show looks back to the magic tricks of yesteryear, before camera tricks and tv magic, between 1850 and 1930, when magicians were the rock stars of the day. These tricks are mixed with Kendall’s humour and anecdotes about the men who made them famous... 

Sketchatron

Sketchatron

This is a buzzing, quality presentation, to a sell out crowd, billed as a selection of the best sketch comedy, on at Bedlam every Sunday afternoon. It was great to see a sell out crowd early on in the Fringe... 

Death by Chocolate

Death by Chocolate

With a billing as an interactive murder mystery with chocolate tasting, the crowds were queuing up at Zoo Southside. It feels exciting: we’re all given a pen, booklet to collect clues in and a lanyard to identify us as trainee detectives... 

Treasure Island

Treasure Island

Treasure Island is a classic tale, and with Robert Louis Stevenson one of Edinburgh’s most enduring literary sons, one that is sure to draw Fringe crowds looking for family entertainment... 

Frog Man

Frog Man

Meanwhile Theatre Company present Mick Martin’s Frog Man, a physical piece of blackly comic theatre that premiered at the Fringe two years ago.Kenny, a police frogman (Andrew Warnock) and Kelly, his beautiful stay at home wife (Ruth Herbert), are childhood sweethearts, seemingly living in perfect suburban bliss at 46 Sunnybrook Meadow, with their sensible 4x4 and fabulous fun hot tub... 

The Root of -1

The Root of -1

Hartshorn-Hook and Angels and Virgins Theatre Company present this new drama by Adam Somerset at the rather early time of 11 am in C SoCo. The piece is played by three young actors, and tells a story of love and loss, with a slice of maths theory (hence the title) thrown in... 

Carey Marx: Careyness

Carey Marx: Careyness

Edinburgh comedy stalwarts the Stand have a couple of new venues this year over the road on York Place, and Carey Marx’s new show ‘Careyness’ take place in the more intimate Stand 4, or the comedy conference room as Marx refers to it... 

Living with Johnny Depp

Living with Johnny Depp

Living with Johnny Depp, by the Irish Madcap Theatre Company is one woman show written by and starring Joanne Mitchell. It starts as an account of pupil Shania Sweeney’s journey from third year mock exams to expulsion from secondary school in Sligo and turns into an exploration of the obsessions and frustrations of three women at different stages of their lives... 

The Lion and the Jewel

The Lion and the Jewel

I’d love to tell you all about this production of the Lion and Jewel at Zoo, but its actually proved very difficult to find any information as the company didn’t provide a press release or programme... 

The Absinthe Monologues

The Absinthe Monologues

We are welcomed the world of the Absinthe Monologues with a free glass of La Fee absinthe by The Cad, a slightly grotesque ‘remnant of British Imperialism’. The Cad also supplies us with the best programme that I’ve seen so far this year – a mini work of art in its own right, which includes instructions for mixing your absinthe... 

Waiting for Groucho

Waiting for Groucho

Rhymes with Purple are a small young company from Glasgow who develop their own scripts and operate on a shoe-string budget without public funding. Waiting for Groucho has been written by Louise Oliver, one of the company, who also takes a supporting role in this combination of Beckett and Vaudeville... 

Damascus

Damascus

David Greig is undoubtedly one of Scotland’s finest contemporary playwrights, and the Traverse’s production of his latest play, Damascus shows him on excellent form. Paul (Paul Higgins) is a Scottish writer and the reluctant salesman of an English language course who has come to Damascus to convince Muna (Nathalie Armin) and the Dean of a college, Wasim (Alex Elliot), to buy the course... 

Bouncers

Bouncers

As sure as you’ll be pestered by at least 25 student groups flyering on the Royal Mile, the fringe always ensures a good number of Godber revivals, frequently attempted by amateur groups with varying degrees of success... 

Bellydance Diaries '07: More true tales from Cairo

Bellydance Diaries '07: More true tales from Cairo

Daphne Pena returns to Edinburgh with a new show for 2007, adding more tales and dances from Cairo, following up her 2006 ‘Bellydance Diaries’. As in 2006, it blends dancing (and live music) with fictionalised stories of the women who she meets in Cairo while studying and practicing bellydancing... 

The Discotivity

The Discotivity

Could this be the cheesiest show in Edinburgh? This retelling of the nativity to a disco beat is certainly in with a shout for topping out the mozzarella meter. 2003 Pop Idol Michelle McManus is joined by a young and enthusiastic cast – and we know it must be Bethlehem because in amongst the tinsel and glitter balls sits a palm tree... 

Ae Fond Kiss

Ae Fond Kiss

Taken from Glasgow venue Oran Mor’s successful ‘a play, a pie and a pint’ lunchtime shows, Ae Fond Kiss follows hapless Zed’s 18th birthday trip to Lola, a down on her luck prostitute... 

The Slippery Soapbox: Spotbanded Skat

The Slippery Soapbox: Spotbanded Skat

Fresh faced young company shutYOface from Nottingham (formed at the university there) return to the Fringe to follow up last year’s Slippery Soapbox with Spotbanded Skat downstairs at the Zoo... 

Big in Japan (or Three Steves and a Bob)

Big in Japan (or Three Steves and a Bob)

There is much to commend in Bob Karper’s new one-man show at Zoo. He is an engaging and charming storyteller, and the selection of film clips and the live music he has written and performs work well... 

Vladimir McTavish: A Scottish History of the World

Vladimir McTavish: A Scottish History of the World

Where better to hear about Scottish history and the current state of affairs than the SNP Club that becomes Stand II for the duration of the festival? Scottish comedy stalwart Vladimir returns to deliver his 3rd solo show that skilfully combines history lesson, polemic and fun... 

An Air Balloon Across Antarctica

An Air Balloon Across Antarctica

Darragh Martin’s premise in An Air Balloon seems preposterous: a small, blonde, female explorer and an obese hamster are bored on a journey across the Antarctic in a hot air balloon... 

Andrew Lawrence - How to Butcher Your Loved Ones

Andrew Lawrence - How to Butcher Your Loved Ones

Andrew Lawrence, winner of the BBC New Act of the Year 2004, is at the Pleasance with his first solo show, How to Butcher Your Loved Ones.If the title makes the show sounds disturbing, well, that's because it is disturbing... 

Abby, Vera and Sue

Abby, Vera and Sue

The New Quorndon Shakespeare Company present a new musical comedy, written by Sharon Scott with music and lyrics by Phil Law and Nigel Scott, Abby Vera and Sue.The action takes place in and around a mother a toddler group, full of the ‘disparate and desperate’... 

A-Haunting We Will Go

A-Haunting We Will Go

Venue 2 Venue, a young company of GCSE and A-level drama students present Tim Kelly’s A-Haunting we will go. It is billed as a comedy drama and certainly has elements as both.Norma Corwin made a childhood vow to spend a night alone in The Inn of the Three Sisters, a local hotel where an unsolved murder took place... 

Mervyn Stutter’s Pick of The Fringe

Mervyn Stutter’s Pick of The Fringe

In an age of ever rising ticket prices and purple cow shaped venues it is nice to find something that represents good old fashioned value. Mervyn Stutter has been presenting his 'Pick of the Fringe' for 15 years now, and it remains one of the most reliable starting points for anyone's Fringe experience... 

James Smiley: Public School Twat

James Smiley: Public School Twat

James Smiley, Public School Twat is described as 'One young man. One Bill Hicksish black jacket. Hopefully more than one joke. Join James and his twisted observations on drugs, sex, the universe and matron in some very posh stand-up'... 

The Libertine

The Libertine

The King's Players have taken a brave step showcasing a story most recently seen on the big screen with Johnny Depp in the lead role. To follow such a superstar, they were going to have to present an excellent interpretation of Stephen Jeffrey's The Libertine, the story of 17th century playboy John Wilmot, Earl of Rochester... 

The Black Jew Dialogues

The Black Jew Dialogues

In the Black Jew Dialogues actors and writers Ron Jones and Larry Jay Tish explore stereotypes and similarities of the black and Jewish experiences in America, using a sketch show format... 

We Are The Dreamers

We Are The Dreamers

Side by Side Theatre Group return to the Fringe for the third time with a new take on A Midsummer Night’s Dream, written by Susan Wallin. The award-winning group from Stourbridge in the Midlands gives people with learning difficulties the opportunity to become involved in cultural life and reach out to a wider audience through the performing arts... 

Laurence & Gus - Next In Line

Laurence & Gus - Next In Line

Radio 4 regulars Laurence Howarth and Gus Brown, winners of the 2003 Dubble Act, are back after a year’s absence with their 3rd Edinburgh sketch show, Next in Line. The context for the show is formed at the start, with a narrator asking us to imagine that there is a queue of people all around the world, standing in a line with no beginning and no end, and no way of knowing who you will end up next to... 

Gary Le Strange: Beef Scarecrow

Gary Le Strange: Beef Scarecrow

Writer, musician and actor, Waen Shepherd presents his 3rd show as 1980s misunderstood musical genius, Gary Le Strange. The show is billed as ‘time to meet the real Gary behind the mask’, in his third Edinburgh outing after winning the Perrier Newcomer award for Polaroid Suitcase in 2003... 

Tirade for Three/Vagrant

Tirade for Three/Vagrant

The Padua Playwrights present a double bill of classy fringe theatre; founder Murray Mednick’s Tirade for Three and artistic director Guy Zimmerman’s Vagrant. A Los Angeles based company, presenting what they describe as ‘literary theatre’ Padua are in Edinburgh for the first time... 

Taylor Mac

Taylor Mac

Taylor Mac, drag queen, performance artist and ukulele player, presents what he calls The Be(a)st of Taylor Mac. A mix of songs, monologues and tirades against the state of the world and the state of his love life, this is a true fringe experience... 

Russell Howard: Wandering

Russell Howard: Wandering

Russell Howard has been playing to packed houses down at the Pleasance Courtyard with his show ‘Wandering’. It’s a suitable title, Howard taking us on a wander through his material, responding well to the audience along the way... 

The Journey to Becoming a Super Woman

The Journey to Becoming a Super Woman

This is the world premier of Nafeesa Monroe’s one woman show, Journey to Becoming a Super Woman. As spoken word artist her previous credits include opening for singer Jewel and appearing on HBO’s Def Poetry... 

Johnny and the Bomb

Johnny and the Bomb

Johnny and the Bomb is an enjoyable Terry Pratchet story involving time travel, a bag lady and the eponymous Johnny. A new adaptation by the young Bristol based Fragile Theatre Partnership has been developed by the company with a talented young dyslexic director... 

Corleone: The Shakespearean Godfather

Corleone: The Shakespearean Godfather

Eastview Theatre, a company of young high school performers from Minnesota present the European Premier of David Mann's reinterpretation of The Godfather, Corleone.Mann's idea was simple enough - retell the Godfather in the style of Shakespeare... 

Richard Herring – ménage à un

Richard Herring – ménage à un

Richard Herring returns to Edinburgh with his 21st show in 15 years. People of a certain age (mine, but don’t tell) will remember him from 1990s cult comedy classics, Fist of Fun and This Morning with Richard not Judy, with his erstwhile partner, Stewart Lee... 

All Human One Man Magic Show

All Human One Man Magic Show

Mario Morris presents his comedy magic show, the All Human One Magic Show at Zoo Southside. He describes it as a non-patronising family magic show, and provides just that. My thoughts on this show benefit from my 8-year old co-critic Andrew’s views... 

Fool

Fool

The members of Fool met performing as part of the Durham review, but don’t let that put you off. The multi-talented cast of four, who also wrote and performed the award-winning children’s show The Ignatius Trail, present their own original combination of music and characters... 

The Black Sheep

The Black Sheep

The Black Sheep are Andrew Jones and Ciaran Murtagh, and this is their self-titled sketch show. It is full of energy, silliness, songs and a cast of thousands which fans of the genre will enjoy... 

Pentecostal Wisconsin

Pentecostal Wisconsin

Ryan Paulson was brought up in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, a town full of taciturn Scandinavians. Paulson is told that he will get to heaven, unlike his Lutheran neighbours, as he is Pentecostal, the religion where they speak in tongues... 

The Regina Monologues

The Regina Monologues

The Regina Monologues, a new play written by Jenny Wafer and Rebecca Russell (who also performs), is given its world-premier by Tidemark Theatre. It takes a fresh look at the story of the six wives of Henry VIII by moving the action to 2006... 

Professor Bumm's Story Machine

Professor Bumm's Story Machine

The scene is set by a pumping house tune with a countdown. On stage is a large structure covered with a sheet. As the lights go down, anticipation grows for this family comedy improvisation show, and Andrew Jones and Ciaran Murtagh jump onto the stage as Professor Bumm and Doctor Whee... 

What I Heard About Iraq

What I Heard About Iraq

What I Heard About Iraq is an adaptation of Eliot Weinberger’s controversial article, published in 2005. Hannah Eidinow directs Simon Levy’s adaptation for its European premier. Its strength is that by analysing the war through the words of the politicians, Iraqis and military personnel involved, it connects to both the politics and the human scale of the conflict... 

Boothby Graffoe with Nick Pynn: Release u win tin

Boothby Graffoe with Nick Pynn: Release u win tin

Boothby Graffoe, the only comedian named after a Lincolnshire village, is a Fringe comedy institution. Over the years his surreal humour, often accompanied by his guitar, has held some the toughest audiences captivated...