I last went to Edinburgh for Hogmanay (New Years Eve) 2013/2014. Before that, I lived in Edinburgh for a month whilst I worked for C venues and attended the Edinburgh International TV Festival. I’ve been itching to get back ever since as I love Edinburgh and the Edinburgh fringe festival. I hope to go into detail about the film locations I visited in Edinburgh city centre and also my favourite things about Edinburgh over the next few months, but here is a simple rundown of what we got up to over our few days in Scotland’s capital.
We saw a grand total of 12 shows… Well, my family saw 13 performances. I skipped the Doris Day tribute one morning to go and be snap happy around Edinburgh like a good little blogger!
The Janice Forsyth Show @ BBC at the Edinburgh Festivals
I’ll admit, I’d never heard of Janice Forsyth as I don’t listen to the radio nor am I retired. Apparently, she is a radio presenter on BBC Scotland with her own show. It was a live recorded broadcast and we were treated to quite a few guests including The Strypes, Emmanuel Bass and other comedians and performers at the Festival.
Shit-Faced Showtime @ Underbelly Med Quad
Two years ago I saw Shit-Faced Shakespeare at C Main. The premise is based around one of the actors getting drunk just before the show and no matter what happens and what the drunk person says or does, the show must go on. I’m not surprised they’ve expanded as it’s a really popular Fringe show, but if you the sound of it I’d recommend the Shakespeare version as the Showtime version, albeit very funny, just wasn’t up to the same standard.
Marc Jennings: Disconnected @ Underbelly Cowgate
This stand-up show was part of PBH’s Free Fringe. This is where you can find a huge choice of shows at the Festival for free, which certainly doesn’t mean they’re bad. Marc Jennings had gone for the first part of this year with absolutely no internet or social media and he even gave up his smart phone. The conclusions he came to at the end of his ordeal were really interesting and maybe not what you’d think. Quality stuff for a free show!
Free Music @ Malone’s Irish Bar
Another show that was part of PBH’s Free Fringe, we mainly just nipped inside to kill time between shows. But why not, eh? It’s a lovely bar, great band, and wasn’t too overcrowded either.
The Noise Next Door’s Comedy Lock-In @ Pleasance Courtyard
The was only my second time watching Comedy Improv group The Noise Next Door (be sure to keep reading, it wasn’t my last!) but my family have seen them quite a few times before. I would go and see The Noise Next Door again and again at the Fringe and anywhere else because they’re so talented (I absolutely can’t stand amateur improv, it makes me weep with pity, but luckily there’s none of that here) and you’re guaranteed a show worth your money.
Comedy Mash-Up at Laughing Horse @ Espionage
So around 5/6 amateur comedians doing a bit of stand-up in a small room in a night-club. I mean, yeah most of them were alright really. You can’t not go to the Fringe without seeing some free amateur comedy, it’s basically the law.
Bat-Fan @ Pleasance Courtyard
Bat-Fan was a surprising one. We didn’t really mean to see Bat-Fan, we just knew we wanted to see the shows on before and after this one and Bat-Fan was just in the right place at the right time. I’m so glad we did see it though! It was about a man (said man aged around 4 years old, above) who is a massive Batman fan and also a dab hand at musical theatre.
La Gateau Chocolat: Black @ Assembly on The Mound
We were first treated to a slice of La Gateau Chocolat’s show when he appeared on The Janice Forsyth Show the day before. It’s a fantastic piece and unlike anything I had ever seen before. La Gateau Chocolat is a drag performer with a fantastic operatic voice. The whole show was largely in song, set in Chocolat’s bedroom with animation to tell some parts of the narrative. The show delved into body image, depression, and what it really means to be Black.
The Pajama Men: 2 Men, 3 Musketeers @ Assembly Roxy
Like Bat-Fan, this show was also a surprise, when mum suggested it I kind of just went along with the plans but I had no idea how good it would be! It’s a show with two men playing all the parts (sometimes the would both play the same part in the same scene which takes some skill) which is particularly interesting since even the audience members not familiar with The Three Musketeers you can imagine there’s at least 3 characters in the story. Definitely a bit odd but still something special.
Have a Heart @ Just the Tonic at The Caves
My mum and my sister seemed to quite enjoy this show, and I could definitely see why but for some reason I just couldn’t keep my eyes open. It was a very small one man show (with only one other group in the performance) about a heart transplant and some depressing realities (and illusions) of that.
Lisa Gornick’s Live Drawing Show @ Gilded Balloon Teviot Place
This was a really sweet and unique show that I’m really glad we saw. Film director and artist Lisa Gornick takes us through a story about her own roots and how her and her Grandmother have something really personal and special in common, the drawings and the accents we equally wonderful.
The Noise Next Door: The Really, Really Good Afternoon Show @ Gilded Balloon Teviot Place
Yup, The Noise Next Door had an entirely different show at the Fringe! This one with less ‘swearsies’ as they cutely put it. To some it might have been pointless and a waste of money to see the same act again when there are so many other acts on, but when you know they’re so talented it’s difficult not to catch all of their shows. This one didn’t disappoint either and honestly, do try and catch them if they’re touring near you which I’m sure they will be very shortly.
As well as the fringe shows, I also…
Went to the Edinburgh Military Tattoo!
Walked up Calton Hill and saw a huge, beautiful rainbow across Edinburgh…
And finally, just had an awesome time in Edinburgh!
Any more of you lovely readers obsessed with Edinburgh? Or perhaps you have also been to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival?