Aug 4, 2008

Edinburgh is Brilliant!

Normally I try for a witty blog title, but I've just discovered I've bloody left my power converter in Glasgow, and my laptop battery will run out of power in about 10 minutes. So I will have to describe my first day-and-a-half at the Edinburgh Fringe briefly....

It's just amazing. So many people, so many shows... I'm just going by the brochure containing acts on at the "big four" venues (Pleasance, Gilded Balloon, Underbelly and Assembly Rooms), but there's so much more out there. The vibe is pumping, the beer is flowing, the comedy is flowing (again, heaps of "proper" theatre too, but I can't even get my head around that yet!)

I'm staying in a marvellous flat just near The Meadows with the stunning and brilliant improviser/stand-up Deborah Frances White, the just mind-bogglingly clever mind-reader and all-round witch Phillip Escoffey, and the regal Phillip York, who's a proper actor and with the most commanding voice since the Duke of Wellington. I've seen both Deborah and Phillip Escoffey's shows, and hope to see Phillip York's (a one-man show about dodgy publishing guru Robert Maxwell) later this week.

Apart from discovering there was no hot water in the flat this morning when I tried to shower, and the fact that it bizarrely has no communal living area (just a hallway), it really is wonderful. Deborah and the Phillips are so erudite and funny - it's like being on school camp only I actually want to be here.

In return for this accommodation, I'm working at the fringe handing out flyers for their shows. Now let me tell you, flyering is hard work. I've been advised to engage with people - not just shove the flyer into their hands and say "Great show, on here, this much". I was up on the Royal Mile today, and no kidding, every second person was a "flyerer", and it was hard to find the actual punters! Then many would say "no thanks", and I felt like I barely made a dent in my big stack of flyers.

However, flyering around the venues (in my case, the Pleasance Courtyard and Pleasance Dome) is a lot better, as people are generally there to see shows, and they're more responsive to suggestions. The best part was Saturday night, when I was handing out flyers for a late night multi-act/new material show called "Old Rope" - I ended up just chatting to heaps of people. It was really fun - telling them about the show, but then just asking them about Edinburgh and their festival experiences, and why I was over from Australia, etc etc.

It's just a blast so far. This evening I also saw Mark Watson, who was very good, so fast and so energetic. I'm hoping to get to a lot more over the coming days - I'll keep you posted!


  1. how's the balmy scottish summer?

    the fiend
    remembering the spring in skye...

  2. Mark Watson is amazing. I saw him when he came out to Austrlia just recently, and he was hilarious. He's going to be enormous in a few years, you heard it here first!

  3. We saw him at the Sit Down Comedy Club just last year and he was brilliant. I also saw him on Spicks and Specks just last month too!

  4. I still ask the same question... Do you have a brain? WAllets, keys, speeding signs, what else do you miss!

  5. And how did you manage to wake up at 9am?

  6. Oh Look,
    The little anonymous WALLY has raised it's little anonymous head.

    You obviously forgot to read the handbook that was recommended to you a few days ago

    Try to keep up WALLY

  7. You MUST see Bille Brown in "Feasting on Flesh" while you're in Edinburgh. It opens Tues night apparently. Closed in Bris on Saturday. Bille Brown, nudity, chocolate cake and cling film. Need I say more?!!!

  8. I'm going to sit here in my room and watch the comedy in my head...

    Boo hoo hoo

    I'm fine..



  9. Hey guys!

    fiend - bloody unpredictable! Hot and sweaty, interspersed with cold and grey... I need half a jacket.

    Stu & Michael - Mark watson's already huge; he's selling out every night.

    Spencer - I can't find the Bille Brown show on the fringe website so email me if you have more details. I will add it to the list!

    Wah - I am absorbing the comedy power and will boost you on my return.

    Hmm, that's not supposed to sound rude.

    As for Mr Anonymous - I'd reply but I'm afraid I don't really know what you're talking about. Wallets, keys, getting up at 9am - I don't recall discussing those at any length.But nevertheless, thank you for reading and I hope you find something entertaining on the blog!

    Cheers to all, Nat.