Pretending To Be: Cultural Reporter- Live At The Edinburgh Fringe (part IIb)

We go back to our outside broadcast team, for the rest of the day’s proceedings.

We’re back with the rest of the day. After a brief stop for a sandwich (Cheddar, pear and chutney from M&S, if you’re interested), back to Pleasance Courtyard (I always call it ‘the BBC end’. You might know what I mean there. If not, don’t worry) for more shows.

First up is an improv show. Exterminating Angel follows 5 individuals across a dinner party, listening in to their conversation. It starts as normal enough small talk, before shedding layers and becoming very sinister- but the change is so fluid you’ll barely notice until it’s too late. Obviously, it’s an improvised piece, so I can’t really rate it- it’s different every day. Nevertheless, I recommend it.

The next show I had to see, on the strength of title alone. An Indie Boy’s Guide To Sex And Girls. Marc Burrows guides the audience through STD tests, Transformers and 18 year old’s birthday parties, but mainly music. And girls. Did you know that your favourite genre of music says a lot about your sex life? Well it does. I managed to sustain a giggle throughout as I could relate to far too much of Burrow’s material. Considering the venue is a basement underneath a Mexican restaurant, it’s well worth a look in. 9/10.

Things get weird from here. Australian master comic/cult hero Sam Simmons is back with a new concept- About The Weather. If you haven’t heard of Mr. Simmons, you should be ashamed. A surreal fantasy/unsettling voyage of the mind taking in chocolate owls, IKEA home furniture and falling in love on public transport. Granted, it’s not for everyone (some very strange song and dance routines, and A LOT of props), but if you like your comedy a bit more leftfield, a little different, then go see him. Sam Simmons is the Wine Bar at The Gilded Balloon. Either 0/10, or 256/10. Depends on your sense of humour, really.

And the unsettling comedy continues. In the amazing Voodoo Rooms, Auntie Myra’s Funshow awaits. Rotherham’s finest cabaret star, Myra DuBois, is reborn/making a living as a children’s entertainer. Nightmarish nearly covers it- the audience are thrown into the role of children at a birthday party, where beloved Auntie Myra performs magic, sings, gives out treats and even does a bit of ventriloquism. Even when things went wrong, it felt ‘right’- that takes skill. Add to this the gothic look of the surroundings, and this is a complete (but slightly chilling- even just her name raises alarm bells when combined with ‘children’) package. If you don’t like audience participation (I’m not keen- last time I was brought onto a stage, I ended up being whipped in the face. True story, albeit a long one), avoid like the plague. But it’s more fun if you try it. You won’t regret it. Honest. Very, very dark- not for everyone, but great stuff. Auntie Myra’s Funhouse is on in the Voodoo Rooms. 9/10 ahh go on- 10/10.

So there’s a couple of more alternative recommendations, and there’s more to come tomorrow. Keep watching!

(Dial Tone)

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