Tag Archives: Edinburgh

Peter Michael Marino – Show Up.

 

Bunbury Magazine – ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

 

The first and most important thing to say about Show Up, Peter Michael Marino’s  latest one-man show, is that it is not written by nor is it about Peter Michael Marino. This show, as made clear on the flyer, is about the ‘shite life’ of the audience. This is a show that is completely new and fresh every day, written off the back of suggestions from the audience. Because of this, the show is brand new every day.

 

It would take a brave performer indeed to improvise an entire hour every day on their own. It would take an incredibly funny and intelligent performer to be able to do this. Luckily, Peter Michael Marino is a performer of great intelligence, wit and enough energy to light up the entirety of The Counting House (I think. I’m not an electrician but that seems about right).

 

The first half of the show is that set up for the improvisation. Peter has eight post-it notes with categories written on them such as ‘Family’, ‘Addiction’ and ‘Childhood’. He takes suggestions from the audience based on these categories, segueing into his own tales then back to the people in the room. This helps draw the crowd in on an immediately personal level.  All of these suggestions build towards the second-half, which is a traditional ‘one-man show’, which perfectly parodies the melo-drama of the form. The inclusive feel in the room is extended when he choose audience members to direct the play and the sound-scaping.

 

Peter is a deeply engaging performer who always leaves the crowd with a message. This will be the same message I will leave you with here. Just Show Up. You will never see this show again, and you don’t want to miss out!

 

Peter Michael Marino – Show Up.

Part of The Free Festival.

The Counting House.

1530.

Until 27th August.

Written by Christopher Moriarty.

Marjolein Robertson – Relations

 

Bunbury Magazine – ⭐⭐⭐⭐

 

As the title of the show would suggest, this is an hour of comedy about relationships brought by Marjolein Robertson from the Shetlands to Edinburgh. From the first moments, with Marjolein comparing her relationship with her Dutch Mother to Brexit, it is clear that she has a natural talent for bringing large-scale issues down to a very personal level, and also amplifying the personal in a great way.

 

Marjolein has a great stage presence, immediately bringing the audience into her world in a warm and engaging manner. Even when the types of relationships talked about are a little [rude], the crowd is never made to feel uneasy – Marjolein can take the ultra-personal and the sometimes dark and use her intelligences, emotional and comedic, to craft a set full of laughs.

 

All of this and we are treated to a glimpse of how the BBC series Shetland really should have been written! This is a show that has got something for everyone.

Attila the Stockbroker – Undaunted

Bunbury Magazine –  ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

I sometimes find it hard to write a review of a spoken word show, especially a review of one by someone as talented and wordly-gifted as Attila – mostly because I get so drawn into the performance and the poems (and a little because I get very envious of the talent.)

 

It is with a heady mix of the two that I sit to write this review of Undaunted, the Stockbroker’s Edinburgh show in the iconic Bannerman’s. There could not have been a more perfect venue for this punkiest and rockiest of punk-rock poets. This was a quintessential spoken word set – with poems ranging from the political, the NHS, Trump, Grenfell to the deeply personal, of of which was interspersed with laughs, hard-hitting truths and an honesty which drew the audience in. Attila knows exactly how to work a crowd’s emotions, crafting a set and a flow of poems that twists and turns, leaving the audience in pieces afterwards.

 

All of that is not to mention the words themselves. I could try and be poetic here, describing the man’s talent in a manner befitting the man himself but I doubt I could do him justice so I will leave it with 3 sentences and 3 words: Attila. Is. Phenomenal.

Attila the Stockbroker – Undaunted.

Part of the PBH Free Fringe.

Bannerman’s.

1715.

Until 25th.

Written by Christopher Moriarty.

Mark Simmons – One Linerer

Bunbury Magazine – ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

 

If one-line comedy were a religion, then Mark Simmons would be a Jedi Master of the craft. I have often thought that it must take an incredible mind to write a complete hour of clever, daft and whimsical word-play. Mark displays the very best of a sharp, quick-firing mind right from the very first moment of this show – he walks amongst the audience with a bag of popcorn, offering it the those gathered. Mark then riffs a few jokes from a quick chat with the various people taking the snack.

 

This is an hour of comedy of the highest standard, with Mark weaving quick one-line jokes, physical jokes and puns with something I have never seen at a comedy show of this ilk before – a longer narrative, which I will not reveal here but was hugely impressive. Every moment tied together, from start to finish in a set that demonstrates Mark’s ability to play with the form.

 

This intelligence and awareness comes along with some of the easiest charm to be found in comedy today.

Mark Simmons – One Linerer

Part of the PBH Free Fringe.

Bar Bados.

1500.

Until 26th.

Written by Christopher Moriarty

Rich and Morty

Bunbury Magazine – ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Often, it can be difficult to review ‘compilation’ shows. The styles of the comedians can, whilst being good in their own right, deter from an overarching narrative in the show, or create an absence of one.
Whilst talking to Rich Sheehy before the show, he explained to me that this wasn’t the show he originally intended to bring up. His comedy partner had to leave due to reasons I will not disclose here.
I find it important to mention these things as, despite this and other things that have thrown spanners into Rich’s works, he has managed to put on an excellent show, full of dark, wry humour.
It is also pertinent to say these things as Rich has managed to create a compilation show with a theme, something I have never seen before. It is his quest, every night, to try and find the ‘Mortiest Morty’ amongst the guests he has invited to the show – on this night, two very funny ‘Mortys’ indeed.
For the man himself, he delivered humour that cut to the bone, was fantasitcally satirical with a great deal of charm and cheek. There were tightly-written segues in between songs which popped with parody and jet-black humour. He dealt with topics which could have left the audience feling uncomfortable but Rich dealt with them in a very clever manner, with the afformentioned charm mixing to create a memorable set.
I have no doubt that Rich will have some fantastic Mortys lined up for the rest of the Fringe run. If you want to see some of the best performers at the Festival, as well as some jet black humour that will leave you squirming with laughter, then get yourself down to Rich and Morty.

Rich Sheehy – Rich and Morty.

Part of the PBH Free Fringe.

Southsider.

2245.

Until 26th.

Written by Christopher Moriarty.

Gary Sansome – Bald Man Sings Rihanna

Bunbury Magazine – ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
A lot of shows at the Edinburgh Fringe have a deep message behind them – they concern the performer overcoming hardships and tragedies in a meticulously written narrative. It may sound like a disservice to say that Bald Man Sings Rihanna is not one of these shows. This is genuinely a compliment. What Gary Sansome presents in this hour of comedy is escapism of the highest order.
Even before the show began, Gary was playing with the crowd as they came in and found their seats, which he then rounded off by high-fiving every single person present. The start of the show was chaos, leading into rousing renditions of the Scottish National Anthem and the Barbados National Anthem (well, sort of).
The next hour was filled with superb crown-work, improvisation and the largest amount of energy I have ever seen used on stage. Gary made sure every single person in the room was in on the fun.
The show, as we may have guessed by the title, concerns a bald man, namely Gary, singing the songs of Rihanna – but not just Rihanna. We were also treated to the hits of JLS, Katy Perry and Kendrick Lamar. These songs were used as springboards for a lot of greatly-crafted jokes and improvisation.
If you want an hour of pure entertainment and hilarity, get to see Gary Sansome – and take your best singing voice with you!

Gary Sansome – Bald Man Sings Rihanna.

Part of the PBH Free Fringe.

Globe Bar.

2030.

Until 27th.

Written by Christopher Moriarty.

Tom Little – Rightly or Wrongly, for Better or Worse, the Fact Is This Is…

Bunbury Magazine – ⭐⭐⭐⭐

 

Tom Little is a rare brand of comedian. A comedian who takes an idea, no matter how old or new, and presents it without airs or graces. He presents it, then presents it again and again, taking the idea to its logical conclusion, past its limit and into a new dimension of hilarity.

 

Tom presents his comedic ideas with an energy and impact that is hard to ignore, not that you would want to. The focus he brings to the stage, both in his own intent and bringing the audience into his world, adds an intensity and urgency to his words as each laugh, each punchline rattles around the room.

 

This show is about his journey growing up, one long narrative which flips from childhood to adulthood, taking absurdist turns towards yoghurt in the classroom, Gary Brooker and protractors. There is much more going on as well but it would be remiss of me to post spoilers here. Tom uses repetition to its absolute highest, flipping jokes on their heads in an enviable manner.

 

Tom’s writing is absolutely incisive, intelligently written and delivered in a way that leaves the audience twisting and turning every time he pulls the unexpected from unexpected places.

 

Tom Little – Rightly or Wrongly, for Better or Worse, the Fact Is This Is…

Part of the PBH Free Fringe.

Black Market.

1445.

Until 26th.

Written by Christopher Moriarty.

 

 

 

Henry Churniavsky & Joe Bains: 2 Religions, 1 Comedy Show Review

 

Bunbury Magazine: ⭐⭐⭐

 

Comedy shows about religion can sometimes divide the audience’s expectations. Half of the audience may be predicting comedy that is a little close to the knuckle, and this can create a tension in the room.

 

Henry and Joe made sure that everyone in the room felt at ease, each performer delivering 30 minutes of solid comedy from the points of view of their respective religions – Henry being of the Jewish faith and Joe following Sikhism.

 

Joe and Henry each used their charm to disarm the audience in the room as they poked fun at their own religions and traditions – Joe’s jokes exploring cultural differences between India and the UK, such as the outsourcing of call centres and where Indian people in the UK can go for an authentic Indian experience. Again, Henry’s comedy explores what it was like growing up Jewish in Liverpool, with a great story about being excluded in a bar warming us up for what was to follow. All of the comedy from both performers subverted traditional jokes and stereotypes in a pleasing way.

 

I would have perhaps liked to see this exploration go a little deeper and it would have been great to see the performers on stage together, comparing and contrasting their own religions against each other’s and highlighting some absurdities and common ground. All in all though, it was an enjoyable hour of comedy which sought to challenge expectations and shed new light on and have fun with what could have been tense subject matter.

2 Religions, 1 Comedy Show.

Part of The Free Festival.

The Pear Tree.

Run now finished.

Written by Christopher Moriarty.

Adam Larter – L’art Nouveau Review 

Bunbury Magazine: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
If there was only one word to describe this show, this reviewer is convinced that that word does not exist.

At the top of the show, Adam asks the audience if they are ready for comedy. A resounding yes. He then asks the audience if they are ready for art. Another resounding yes.
What followed was a great fusion of the two in a show that contained everything you could not even begin to imagine. Human pass the parcel, wonderful parody songs, elements which made you genuinely worry about the physical health of the performer and surprise appearances by other Fringe Favourites.
All of these elements were neatly woven together with an overriding arch of a POP-ular type of crisp. It would be remiss, though, to say that all of the suprises in the show were woven together just by the crisps.
The show, and the audience, was carried by a performer with an unrivalled imagination, huge amounts of energy and knows how to engage the crowd in an extremely likable way. I was also blown away by the Adam’s resourcefulness. As someone who has just qualified as a teacher, I know just how much time can be spent and/or lost trying to make things for the classroom. The amount of hand-made props Adam uses throughout his show is admirable! 
I’m going to end this review with a personal note to Adam, who pointed out during his ‘cheese-making’ routine, that another reviewer described this section as ‘pointless’. If it were performed just in the context of comedy, it may well have been pointless but this was ART, and art experienced in the moment can never be pointless, as every moment has a meaning that can be transposed onto the ART. And that’s enough of the Gumpertz-style nonsense.

Adam Larter: L’Art Nouveau. 

The Hive.

1pm.

Until 26th.

Part of Heroes of the Fringe.

Omar & Lee – We Are All Idiots ★★★★★

It was late, the audience was rowdy and these guys were Amazing.

They warmed the audience up with ease and their control throughout was superb. Energetic from start to finish and with a story that was strangely emotive given the overall tone of the performance, these two were a pleasure to behold.

We can say confidently that there was something for everyone in this show, from knuckle grazing ‘Should I laugh at this’ jokes to genuinely side-splitting witticisms and physicality, making this one of the best shows of the fringe.

Think satire infused with almost cartoon-like visual gags and magnificent facial hair, Omar & Lee really do have a unique chemistry  that carries their style of writing perfectly.

We arrived expectant, we left elated.

In short, they are a must-see duo who we predict, have a bright, nay, dazzling future in the industry.

omar-and-lee