How about a list of today’s shows?
Here’s the schedule for 18th August:
10.00 – Shakespeare for Breakfast, C Arts C Venues C Aquila. From the Edinburgh Fringe website:
“The Bardic Breakfasters are back! C’s sensational Shakespearience returns for our 31st Fringe, with free coffee and croissants! A pleasing plethora of pentameter, puns and pastry. Perfect for hardened fans of the Bard and blank verse virgins alike. ‘A bouncy and boisterous take on Willie’s work’ (List). ‘Well worth getting out of bed for’ (Independent). ‘No holds Bard (FringeGuru.com). ‘Irreverent humour… clever’ (Stage). ‘Side-splitting… glorious’ (BroadwayBaby.com). ‘Full of fun’ (RemoteGoat.com). ‘Sizzling’ (Scottish Daily Express). Free coffee and croissants! Book early.”
Starting off with an old favourite, Shakespeare for Breakfast is consistently one of the funniest shows of the Fringe and never fails to make you laugh your socks off. Don’t know which of the Bard’s works will be this year’s target – but it’s gonna be good.
UPDATE: Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear. The fabulous four who brought us Shakespeare for Breakfast are no longer here, instead they have sold the brand to three others whom I doubt saw the originals. Comparisons are odious, but sadly this isn’t a patch on the previous product. SFB used to be thrilling, outrageous, nonsensical, hilarious. This is very polite, subdued, and strangely disengaging. It doesn’t help that very few people are familiar enough with The Winter’s Tale to enjoy the comedy of recognition. A few nice ideas and comedy songs but it left us cold I’m afraid. ⭐️⭐️
11.30 – Accost Your Imposter and Empower Your Power: An Interactive Life Coaching Seminar With Genevieve de Beauvoir, Just the Tonic at the Mash House.
“Troubled? Weak? Feel like a fraud? Good. Genevieve de Beauvoir is a fully-qualified life coach* and will be launching her exciting new e-book on imposter syndrome at the Fringe! Imposter syndrome is a clinical lifelong brain disease that affects at least 100% of women and occasional men. In this seminar, Genevieve will offer heart-healing, interactive** life coaching for any audience members with imposter issues and other shameful flaws (incest and hygiene problems are not in her remit). *Certificate available upon request. **To an extent.”
Potentially the longest title of the Fringe, I’m looking forward to this mock psycho-session (assuming that’s what it is!)
UPDATE No 1: Sadly, at 11:50 Ms de Beauvoir hadn’t shown up and the staff at the Mash House told us to apply to the Box Office – progress pending. So instead we booked tickets to see Benji Waterstones “You Don’t Have to be Mad to Work Here”. Always important to be flexible at the Fringe!
UPDATE No 2: Benji read us passages from his to-be-published book; some were very funny, some kind of went nowhere. With the best will in the world, and fully aware this was work in progress, we weren’t entirely sure there was a show to be created here. Hope we’re wrong. ⭐️⭐️
14.20 – Speed Dial, Pleasance Dome.
“Amongst the spires, spikes and sideburns of a 1970s university, a lonely Professor awaits a call. When he’s chased by the ringing of every passing phone, an ominous voice sets a series of mysterious puzzles that stand between him and his missing daughter. Dodgy deans, grumbling groundskeepers and swotty students are suspects as the Professor capers across campus to uncover whodunnit and why. Set to the sounds of 70s vinyl, multi-award winners Spies Like Us bring their explosively physical comedy-thriller about connection, forgiveness… and cryptic crosswords. ‘Singin’ in the Rain meets Hitchcock’ **** (TheReviewsHub.com).”
Sounds like a fun comedy caper – so I’m giving it the benefit of the doubt with a punt.
UPDATE: Firstly the music is great. The show itself is very original, with very committed performances and the crossword solving aspect of the show was entertaining. However, the play itself was very tiresome, incredibly complicated and extraordinarily and unnecessarily noisy! ⭐️⭐️
16.15 – Rob Madge: My Son’s a Queer (But What Can You Do), Underbelly George Square.
“When Rob was 12, they attempted a full-blown Disney parade in their house for their grandma. As Rob donned wigs and played Mary Poppins, Ariel, Mickey Mouse and Belle, their dad doubled as stage manager, sound technician and Goofy. This is the joyous, chaotic, autobiographical story of actor, writer and social-media sensation Rob Madge as they set out to recreate that parade – and this time, nobody, no, nobody is gonna rain on it. Winner of What’s On Stage’s Best Off-West End Production 2022.”
I’ve heard great things about Rob Madge and his show, so it was a no-brainer that we have to see this for ourselves!
UPDATE: With a powerful voice and a huge personality Rob Madge is a star in the making! A feelgood journey through the trials and tribulations of his childhood, accompanied by vhs footage of his living room shows, aided and abetted by his tireless dad. Very entertaining and rewarding! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
19.00 – Hamlet with Ian McKellen, Ashton Hall, St Stephens, Stockbridge.
“Ian McKellen and Peter Schaufuss will collaborate and perform together at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in the world premiere of Hamlet with a whole new performance concept, adapted from William Shakespeare’s play.”
Surely the hottest ticket of the Fringe! Let’s hope it delivers everything it promises.
UPDATE:Ignore those 2* reviews. They clearly don’t understand the concept of Ballet. This is a stunning piece, superb choreography, meticulously danced, that tells the story of Hamlet clearly and thoroughly. The Prince of Denmark is split into two: one, the vocal nervous wreck played by McKellen, the other, the man who moves, played by an extraordinary dancer. I particularly loved Ophelia’s dances, and Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are a delight. Fabulous lighting and sound too. My toes curled with pleasure throughout! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️