The Edinburgh Fringe Full Monty (nearly) – Day 19, 23rd August 2022

Wanna know what’s scheduled for today in Edinburgh?

Here’s the schedule for 23rd August:

11.30 – Death of an Author, Greenside @ Nicolson Square. From the Edinburgh Fringe website:

Death of an Author“What if your favourite characters didn’t quite like the way they were written? What if they decided enough was enough? When an unnamed author is found dead, his characters are brought in for questioning. And they all have motive. Death of an Author is a celebration of untold female stories and a murder mystery like nothing you’ve seen before… come solve the crime in Edinburgh! Will you catch the killer?”

This sounds like a fascinating play – I often think that it’s the characters who are in charge of a book. It will be interesting to see if this play agrees with me!

UPDATE: A very clever premise,  excellent performances, extremely well written, and surprisingly moving. Lots to think about – and truly intriguing for literature buffs! I shan’t reveal who murdered the author…. but no jury would convict! I also liked how the detective did a spot of mansplaining! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

13.40 – Man of 100 Faces, Gilded Balloon Teviot.

Man of 100 Faces“One performer. 100 characters. One hour. Impossible? Not for The Man of 100 Faces. This is the unbelievably true story of Sir Paul Dukes. A child runaway who, with just three weeks’ training, was made head of MI6 in Russia during the bloodiest year of the Revolution. He’s the man that nearly defeated Lenin. The man that first brought yoga to the UK. He’s a master of disguise, the original inspiration for Bond and the only British spy ever to be knighted. But can The Man of 100 Faces unmask who he really is?”

This could be brilliant – or it might be a bit iffy. Only one way to find out!

UPDATE: The story of Paul Dukes. Never heard of him before, and he sounds like one helluva guy. But it needs a larger venue for the loud and physical performance that Saul Boyer gives. In the middle of the front row, we felt  uncomfortable, were sprayed with sweat, and constantly bellowed at. I’m sure that three or four rows back it would have been much more enjoyable. Tremendous commitment from the performer, but our own personal experience was not one I could recommend. ⭐️⭐️⭐️

15.55 – Messiah, Underbelly Bristo Square.

Messiah“Jesus tells his disciples: ‘the Messiah will never come, so we have to create one’. An intense and darkly provocative retelling of the myths and realities surrounding the rise and fall of Christ. Fusing realism and surrealism, history and the present, poetry and vulgarity, we enter a beguiling picture of the last days of Jesus’ life and those that surround him. A cast of four play multiple characters, moving between ensemble, monologue and song. Includes nudity.”

This is another intriguing show – a blank canvas on which anything could be written. Let’s hope it’s good!

UPDATE: Very good, thought provoking play, as you would expect from the pen of Steven Berkoff. We particularly enjoyed the brainstorming session on how to make the resurrection really work!  Very good performances, lots of fourth walk breaking, well worth seeing – and deserves a larger audience. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

18.00 – Rosie Holt: The Woman’s Hour, Pleasance Courtyard.

Rosie Holt“Social media sensation and Chortle Award winner Rosie Holt debuts an hour of character comedy based on her hit satirical videos. A right-wing “opinionist” distorting the news, an MP desperately defending a failing government, a left-winger wanting to say the right thing but scared of getting it wrong. These characters and more come together when their creator accidentally becomes the news, as they try to speak their truth whatever the facts. ‘If she can stay in character long enough, she’ll have a Telegraph column and a seat on Question Time by teatime’ (James O’Brien).”

Can’t wait to see this. Rosie Holt’s tweets are a thing of genius. This is going to be amazing!

UPDATE: Will the real Rosie Holt stand up? Very good use of video, and virtually 100% new material, which I wasn’t expecting. I liked the confusion of who is Rosie and who isn’t, super interaction with the audience, and all in all an extremely funny hour. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

21.15 – Foil Arms and Hog – Hogwash, Underbelly Bristo Square.

Foil Arms and Hog“Ireland’s top sketch comedy group. With over 500 million online views the internet sensations return to McEwan Hall to premiere their new show, Hogwash. A mix of sketch comedy, audience participation and improvisation. Best reviewed show at the Edinburgh Fringe 2018 and 2019. Sold out 2009-2019. ‘Quite simply, a sensation’ (Edinburgh Festivals Magazine). ‘Very funny show’ (Rowan Atkinson). ‘Hilarious lads’ (Kevin Bridges). ‘An effervescent hour of fast-paced gags, fizzing with energy, invention and great lines’ ( **** (Times). ***** (Irish Examiner). ***** ( ***** (Metro). ***** (”

Foil, Arms and Hog are another of the terrific acts that bring us back to Edinburgh year after year. They’re always fantastic, and know they will be again.

UPDATE: At first we wondered if Foil Arms and Hog had reached their pinnacle, and were beginning to lose their way a little. A very long get-to-know the audience introduction (vital for later material) followed by a too-long sketch based on a ghost story experience, meant that half the show had already gone before we started getting into the really good material, but rest assured it’s as good as ever. I loved the suitcases on the carousel, and the long lost reunions were inspired. Three genuinely hilarious guys – you don’t get better sketch comedy. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️