Thursday, 7 June 2012

Fringe Guide Is Out!!!

It's that exciting time of the year! The Fringe Guide is out and you can start picking your shows... So I have... Here are my initial thoughts!

There are a lot of acts I saw last year making a return and a few that are not... I'm particularly disappointed to see that Adam Riches isn't making a return after winning the Edinburgh Comedy Award. After finally getting the recognition he deserves, he'd be sure to sell out an even bigger venue, but for whatever reason he's decided not to come back... Almost unheard of for a winner. Colin Hoult is someone I had tipped to follow in his footsteps (I thought he also had a chance of getting nominated, but they probably didn't want two similar acts nominated so Adam Riches must have edged it) but he is also staying away.

Top of my list of shows that I saw last year that would happily see again are:

Max and Ivan: Show Detail and Last Year's Review

Doug Segal: Show Detail and Last Year's Review

Max and Ivan are an absolute riot, with an incredible amount of energy, they pack in barrels of laughs into an hour and are great value at around a tenner.

Doug Segal is very quickly growing in popularity due to is on stage likeability and his off stage promotional skills (he'll have retweeted this ten seconds after I post it). He's gone from "I'll see how it goes at the Free Festival" to "Holy Shit I packed out every night I should really get a decent venue and start charging" in only one year... So he's now being represented by Mick Perrin and can be seen at the Guilded Balloon for the same price as Max and Ivan!

I'll also mention Shaggers (as I often do), run by my mate Nik Coppin who also has a solo show and a child friendly free daytime show called Huggers... Despite my bias, I think you'll struggle to find anyone strongly disagreeing with my assertion that Shaggers is one of the best late night four-comics-for-the-price-of-one shows... and definitely the best free compilation show!

Next I'm going to make my first bold prediction of 2012... and it's for Best Newcomer... A couple of years ago I had the pleasure of meeting Imaan Hadchiti at the Fringe and saw him do a 5 minute open spot. I've kept track of him on the web and after performing is show "A Little Perspective" in Oz he's making his full fringe debut at the Gilded Balloon in a multimedia/hidden camera based comedy show that tracks peoples reaction to his lack of height. You may not think it due to the amount of hair he has but he's only in his early twenties... which makes his ease on stage all the more impressive. He has everything to go all the way! You heard it here first!

I also have shows that just take my fancy, starting with Rom Com Con, a new perspective on the Rom Com genre from Mace and Burton, a sassy duo of single females who try to meet men in the way that female characters in romantic comedies do... Sounds a bit dangerous to me (particularly as I know Pretty Women is one of the films they feature) =, but they're still alive to perform the show for a second year after getting some great reviews last year... Including from Bernard O'Leary in The Skinny Might take the girlfriend to that one!

Lots more recommendations coming up as I digest the Fringe Guide over the next few weeks... Then it's time!