Tag Archives: fringe

Simon Jablonski: Love

Simon Jablonski: Love
12:45am @ The Free Sisters (Venue 272) Aug 2-13, 15-26th
Free Fringe Laughing Horse

Bunbury Rating – ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Blunt and deadpan from the off, Simon Jablonski controls the room well with strong material and lots of energy. Different sections of the show have a different feel and pace to them which only serves to strengthen the overall performance as the pace changes suit the subject matter brilliantly. It shows an entirely different level of skill in the presentation of the show and that’s what good comedy is all about. The theme of love is explored in every conceivable way all the while completely subverting expectations with the clever writing and well structured, well thought out show.

Jablonski demonstrated all the way through that he is quick witted and someone who can roll with the punches.
The observations an anecdotes eave you with no choice but to sit back and enjoy while vivid, images are painted for you with great timing and sharp witted language.

Go and see this show. Yes, it may be on a little later but it’s well worth it. You’ll be glad you did. We were.

Cam Spence & Jodie Mitchell – The New Babes: A Review

Bunbury Magazine – ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

The New Babes presents Cam Spence and Jodie Mitchell, two stand-ups with very different and complimentary styles in a show that is not afraid to take on all sectors of social consciousness – sexuality, politics, the class divide, popular culture.

While this is very much a show of two halves, Cam and Jodie introduce the show with an immediate charm and chemistry that brings the audience into their world straight away.

Jodie Mitchell’s half of the show is a section of stand-up comedy that showcases her surreal eye for detail, full of beautiful and sharp-witted imagery and strong messages that cannot be ignored. The high point for me was one of the darkest and most poetic deconstructions of the Teletubbies I have ever heard. Cam Spence demonstrates her comedic talents with character comedy – from a sadistic clinic counsellor to a blindingly left-field parody of the aristocracy, this is dark comedy with a beautiful rhythm.

Cam and Jodie both demonstrate a fierce comedic talent in this hour of comedy which takes no prisoners.

Written by Christopher Moriarty

Cam Spence and Jodie Mitchell: The New Babes

1210 at The Banshee Labyrinth, part of PBH Free Fringe

5th – 25th (except 14th)

The Bunbury Guide to the Edinburgh Fringe

Hello to you all,
Editor Christopher here. Currently I am sat on the train with editors Keri and Malika, about to hit the Edinburgh Fringe for the fifth year. In that time, we have reviewed and interviewed upwards on 5 shows and their peformers. Impressive, no?
We have had the privilege of speaking to dozens upon dozens upon dozens of performers from all walks of life in the five years we have been travelling to the Fringe. Talking to as many people as we do every year takes preparation. As this is Mailka’s first time coming up with us, we thought we would put together a little suvival guide for getting through the Fringe. Maybe, it will come in handy for other Fringe virgins too, whether you’re a performer, reviewer or audience member.
1. Don’t forget your toothbrush

…and other non-cliche items. If you are planning on hitting the Fringe hard, and seeing as many shows as possible, the creature comforts will really get you through. A power-bank, because the new Walking Dead game really drains the battery. A bottle of water – those rooms in the venues get mightily hot, especially if the show is lucky enough to be at capacity. And other stuff like pants and your face will come in handy too.

2. Be prepared for insane weather

Last year, when Keri and I landed in Edinburgh, it was torrential. It was the precipitatory equivalent of the sunny weather we’ve been having for the last two months. My suitcase was one of the cheap fabric affairs so by the time we got to our accommodation, my week’s worth of clothes were wet! Impressed I was not. So unimpressed was I, I apparently turned into Yoda (if Yoda spent most of the films called everyone and everything a cunt). When packing for the trip, put everything in carrier bags in your suitcase, have an umbrella but also shorts and t-shirts a-plenty because two hours later, the sun will be trying to fry your face off.

3. Planning, planning, planning

There’s plenty going on at the Fringe, to say the very least. With thousands of comedians, magicians, poets, theatre companies and more besides, you won’t be stuck for something to do. Last year, in five days, Christopher saw 55 shows. If you want to cram in as many shows as possible, it takes planning, because trying to decide what venue and show you want, then deciding you want to go somwhere else and keep moving on kills valuable time. Download the Fringe app – it has a built in planner to help you keep track of what you have planned to see next.

4. …or just go with the flow

You will not be able to walk more than about seven steps in Edinburgh without being handed a flyer for a show. Some of these will catch your eye, and seeing an impulse show can often lead to experiencing some genuinely exciting art. The best show I have ever seen at the Fringe was one which I was flyered for five minutes before kick off when I should have been on my way somewhere else. 

As a side note, try and be polite to the flyerers, especially if the performer is flyering for their own show. It’s really hard work advertising your own show, building an audience and then performing it – as well as appearances elsewhere – for the entire month. It can be demoralising to see a wave of apathetic faces breeze past. Give them a smile and a hello. It may be the boost they need.

5. Do not listen to Andrew W.K.

…and this will be the only time in my life I will ever say those words. When we interviewed Phil Jupitus a few years ago, he gave us the very sage advice to not treat Edinburgh like a party. If you go up with the sole purpose of getting drunk every day and night, it will ruin you – physically, spiritually, financially. Plus, comedians have hollow legs and are jaded to the prospect of dehydration so trying to keep up with them will be as futile as using a conker shell to hold back the tide.

6. Eat well

If you are planning on hitting as many shows as possible, you need plenty of fuel to burn – sounds daft, I know, but sitting through show after show can be exhausting (in the best possible way). It is possible to eat really well, for cheap. There are plenty of Subways around for a healthy(ish) option, but our big recommendation would be the Mosque Kitchen on West Nicholson Street. Beautiful food, reasonably priced and right by one of the best venues on the Fringe – The Counting House.

7. Take a chance

This kind of ties in to advice number 4. A lot of people will go up to Edinburgh to see the established TV comedians. While it is good to see those people, the true heroes of the Fringe are all those that perform for the free fringe, in all its different models. They put themselves on the line in every way possible to make the Fringe as spectacular as it is. You never know if you’re going to walk into a free show and see the next big thing. You could day you were there! And it’s free too!

8. We say free…

…it’s free to get in to those shows, but not to get out. Donate as generously as you can to the performers on the free fringe. If they have some merch, grab something. And make sure you have change too! It’s considered bad form to put a tenner into a bucket and take a fiver back.

9. Book early

We booked our 2018 accommodation in November 2017, and we still struggled to find something really. As I said before, prepare, prepare, prepare. The prices can be eye-watering, and may run the risk of shutting the entire thing down, but there’s no way around it, because the daily commute from Tunbridge Wells would be a bitch.

10. Make friends

Remember when I said before to smile at the performers if they are looking blue while flyering? The Fringe is a big family (you should see the commotion over Christmas dinner.) and everyone is really supportive. Get involved. Having someone to share the highs and lows with you up there will increase your enjoyment exponentially.

That’s about it I reckon. There’s probably loads of stuff I’ve missed off here but we’re just past Lancaster and I’m beginning to feel travel-sick. Time to try and squeeze in a couple of hour’s sleep before the madness begins.

Rosa Wright: The Love Calculator

Bunbury Reviews
Rosa Wright: The Love Calculator

Bunbury  Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

As the audience took their seats, Rosa Wright, already sat on stage, playing a gentle, melody on a Ukulele. As soon as everyone  was comfortable, the show began and immediately Wright held the room in the palm of her hand demonstrating a superb ability to think on her feet during the excellent audience participation which is neither awkward nor embarrassing for the audience members.
In this beautifully written, honest and touching show poetry, comedy and song are blended perfectly lending further to the unafraid theme threading through the show.
Each piece has its own personality and is both written and performed with different voices masterfully. Some of them deal with fairly sensitive issues, Wright however has a superb ability to maintain the ‘safe space’ feel. The wonderfully crafted songs are both relaxing to listen to as well as brilliantly funny.

This is a must see show and is not to be missed.

Buy tickets below, Just Click on the poster.

 

 

Winter Foenander – Aside Effect

Bunbury Magazine – ⭐⭐⭐

Winter Foenander is part of an impressive crop of comedians to have come out of Ireland in recent years. From the very beginning of the show, he was quick to make the audience feel at home in the venue – a marquee. He brought the audience into his show with good warming-up of the crowd and interaction.

His jokes were well-weaved into long anecdotes, segueing between stories and never leaving the laughs far between. And we here at Bunbury always appreciate a Groot reference!

It is going to perhaps be a detriment to this review that we were not able to stay for the entire show, as the laughs build steadily throughout Winter’s narratives.

We also only ever review a show based on the work performer puts in and never review the audience or the venue. It was clear that a good deal of time and talent went into Winter’s show. However, a show of charming stories and laughs such as this was perhaps not suited to the marquee in one of the busiest beer gardens at the Fringe.

We’re hoping to have the chance to catch Winter again at the Fringe. His is a brand of comedy we enjoy.

Winter Foenander – Aside Effect

Part of the Laughing Horse Festival.

The Free Sisters.

1400.

*Now Finished*

Steve Whiteley – Wisebowm: The Struggle is Real

 

Bunbury Magazine – ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

 

Wisebowm is an urban poet whose struggle is real – the struggle with being the country’s leading urban poet. The struggle with working the nine to five. The struggle with trying to impress the right woman and please his friends and family. This is a musical about struggle.

 

Steve Whiteley has created a deeply likeable character in Wisebowm, a crackling parody of the faux ‘urban kid rap poet’, with pretensions of being ‘gangsta’ yet actually being achingly middle-class. Steve has perfectly identified the attitude and intricacies of these characters and presented them in a fresh way, via an engaging premise. I have seen many parodies of this type of character before, but have never seen it so well done.

 

The premise is a musical based around Wisebowm’s last year, and the struggles he has faced. Steve Whiteley uses the poems and music weaved together exceptionally within the narrative, and his performance absolutely fills the room. There is no ignoring Wisebowm when he is in full flow. The production of the music is also stand-out – the music and SFX all timed to comedic perfection.

 

I never like to make comparisons of one thing to another in these reviews but the narrative of The Struggle is Real, the music and poetry put me in mind of The Streets’ A Grand Don’t Come For Free (a personal note to Mr. Whiteley – I really apologise if this is off the mark of your intentions for the show. That really is one of my favourite albums and you have done a stellar job of parodying it!) Go and see Wisebowm while he is still tearing up the Edinburgh streets with his rhymes. You’ll be his next biggest fan!

Steve Whiteley – Wisebowm: The Struggle is Real

Part of the PBH Free Fringe.

Opium.

1345.

Until 26th.

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.

Joz Norris – Hello, Goodbye: A Review

Bunbury Magazine Rating – ★★★★★

From the very start – not just the start of the set but from walking in to the room – it is clear that this will be a show of comedy with a difference.

Hello, Goodbye is a tale of love and death that takes in everything from Beatrix Potter to Van Morrison with a surreal look at what motivates us moving forward in life.

Joz is a very confident and charming performer. His work with the audience – involving them with the show and drawing them in to his wonderfully imaginative world – is first class. He makes brilliant use of props and music to craft his story and plays around with different forms of comedy to create a layered and unexpected narrative.

It was wonderful to see his subversion of these comedic forms – his subversion of character and improv comedy were very well thought out.

His dedication to the craft is admirable and he really does have a massive future ahead of him.

Hello, Goodbye was on at The Hive at 1840 as part of the Heroes model.

Dave Chawner – Circumcision: A Review

Bunbury Magazine Rating – ★★★★★

Bunbury Fringe Award – The From The Hood Award

Straight from the top of the show, it is clear that Dave Chawner is a confident performer who brings a great deal of cheek and charm to the stage.

This cheek and charm are deployed to fantastic effect whilst dealing with some very sensitive issues – this show is the story of Dave’s circumcision at the start of this year. As the story unfolds, the audience are taken on a journey through mental health issues and eating disorders, all of which are dealt with with the utmost respect and sensitivity. It is clear that Dave knows how to put an audience at ease with excellent delivery.

He even talks about sex in a way that had us in stitches but without being overtly graphic – for the most part – which is a very difficult skill to master.

The entire show had a great rhythm and flow, moving through the narrative with a natural pace that allowed the story to build momentum. There was a very clear message to take from the show, an uplifting message which we will not spoil here but we left knowing we had seen something brilliant from one of the loveliest people we met in Edinburgh.

Circumcision was on at Cabaret Voltaire.