Ever have one of those days where your head and your heart are in agreement that you should do one thing, and yet your body does something completely different? Yeah. Not real pleased with myself at the moment.
- Xavier Michelides in Future World!
- Scottish Falsetto Sock Puppet Theatre
- Sarah Kendall – Persona
- Hardboiled Lolly
The last show tonight saw someone sitting in the second row have a two-minute conversation on his phone. That was acceptable behaviour, apparently, because he wasn’t enjoying it.
What a fucking arsehole.
So – for the first time in years, there’s a Rest Day in Fringe activities. A kerfuffle with FringeTIX saw a trio of shows – all, coincidentally, at The Palace – available for sale; I snaffled a ticket for Morgan & West, but I arrived at the Garden Gates to find a burly security guard turning people away.
Still, it was a prime opportunity to spend some time writing. But instead, I caught up with a dear friend, and then came home and watched the absolutely wonderful 1999 series Coming Soon. Why do I bother mentioning that here? Because Coming Soon is a snippet in the life of a devised theatre group as they struggle for funding, face inner turmoil, and collapse on tour. And the dedication at the end of the show is to fringe theatre artists.
Oh god, I’ve just found it on YouTube… and started watching it all again. So here, for your procrastination, is Coming Soon.
Episodes 1 & 2
Episode 3, Part 1
Episode 3, Part 2
(Unfortunately, I can’t find the rest of the final episode… so there’s no real closure. But I highly recommend seeking it out if you can….)
Kids provided the highlights for the early part of the day – terrified of Swamp Juice, torturing with incessant giggles in Kaput. Apparently small people are good for something ;)
- Swamp Juice
- Bed Percussion
- Porcelain Punch Travelling Medicine Show
- Sam Simmons – About The Weather
So – Sam Simmons is a bit odd, right? A little bit nutty? Well, the guys from Constantinople make him appear totally conservative. What an utterly hatstand show.
But home by 11:30? Blimey, that’s a short day!
You know what? This new Garden layout is a bit shit. Traffic jams a-plenty up top. And not being able to buy tickets at the doors of venues must put a dent in audience numbers… not that Garden management would mind that, of course, since people would be more likely to buy drinks then. Ooooh, conspiracy theory.
- Simon Pampena in The Maths Olympics
- The Magnets – Gobsmacked!
- Theatergroep WAK – LevelLess
- Felicity Ward in The Hedgehog Dilemma
- Tom Thum
Had a lazy old evening, really. Bumped into Matt and Nat and Shelley, and stretched out a potentially early night with a few quiet vodka, lime & sodas on the grass. Quite pleasant, really… well, once you get past the clusters of too-inebriated people. But hey, it’s Saturday night – what did I expect?
A question for you, dear reader: when do you reckon that we, the Fringe-going public, decided that it was cool to speak one’s mind in the middle of a show? To answer one’s phone in the middle of a show? To unintelligibly – and unintelligently – heckle on the basis that you think a performer has no integrity because he’s appeared on TV?
Yes, it’s been one of those days.
- Martin Dockery: Bursting Into Flames
- Slapdash Galaxy
- The Crooked Fiddle Band
- The Phatcave
I was the first paying punter into the Tuxedo Cat opening bash earlier in the evening – I’d seen the old “Club 199” part of the TuxCat mid-January, raw and gutted, but this was my first peek inside the “Gallery” component – and it’s gorgeous, maintaining the Tuxedo Cat feel and adding a metric fuckton of space into the mix. It’s massive now, with tons of seating, a long communal bench, coffee and snacks(!), Internode WiFi coverage, bars, and a gorgeous little dome that manages to be both intimate and inclusionary. It’s early days yet, and I’ve yet to check out any of the performance spaces, but the TuxCat has set a pretty high bar for Best Venue award… again. Top effort, TuxCatters! :)
Oh – and thanks to the InDaily crew for not making me look like a complete freak!
Well… that was unexpected. Welcome to a new Festival/Fringe year!
- Gady LaLa – songs for the sophisticated fag hag
- Music to Watch Boys By
With Gady LaLa long since sold out, I was expecting to have an uneventful night… but my Fringe Buddy just happened to pick up two freshly-available tickets at the door, and snaffle front-row seats. And we had such a blast with Gady LaLa that we decided to hang around for Music to Watch Boys By, too – both shows offer fantastic entertainment.
Then off to the opening-night Garden to familiarise ourselves with the new layout (to optimise those short-changeover dashes). The opening to the new Garden is almost claustrophobic, seemingly focussed on pushing the masses through to the sprawling central area; there’s plenty of dark spots out back, though, which will annoy the unfortunate vendors there no end. Seeing three bars next to each other scuppers any idea that Strut and Fret have lost their focus…
Still, it’s great to be back in the groove of things. The Shortlist Spreadsheet is 446 lines long, and last night was the first time I’d sat down to really focus on planning. The first batch of Fringe tickets numbered a healthy 23; there’s oodles more to come, of course….