It’s August in Edinburgh which means one thing! Awful weather. No wait, no it means the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. And the Fringe means one thing! Awful weather. No wait, not that either. It means excitement! Yes, lots of excitement.
Of my own delight so far, some of the best was getting to see Professor Brian Cox on ‘The Infinite Monkey Cage’ (he’s so dreamy) and the full ensemble of joy that is ‘Just A Minute’, both at BBC at Potterrow. I honestly thought the portion of my brain that houses middle-classed excitement was going to explode at seeing Nicholas Parsons host such a fantastic show live. Luckily I survived, so cous cous sales are safe in Edinburgh for another year.
Yet I gloat over things that have ended their run, which seems rather unfair. Better perhaps to tell you of the things I’ve seen that you should still be able to get tickets for!
First then to the sci-fi delight of ‘Pioneer’; a well-made and very enjoyable theatre production about the first human colonisation of Mars. Of course given I’m sci-fi happy most of the time it had an added edge on entertaining me, but even with that the fantastic use of the set and the interesting story line should keep most anyone engaged. Go see it if you want to remind yourself that great theatre doesn’t need big budgets and hugely expensive costume or prop departments! Also go see it if you like space ships and stuff.
Next was the muscled wonder of ‘Black Grace’; a dance troupe so chiselled in dancing perfection that I wanted to leave half way through and go to the gym. It’s interesting to see dance that is choreographed and performed from a group out from New Zealand, giving it a really interesting Pacific Island twist to proceedings, including some fantastic dance inspired by Samoan slap dance. Go see it if you like muscles, or well-choreographed and moving dance. It truly is fantastic.
And then ‘Klip’, I shall say little more other than the dada-esque absurdist ‘comedy’ was not funny, but was absurd. A more enjoyable absurd was the low budget delight and moderately insane humour of ‘Bears in Space’. Performed by a young Irish group, the story revolves around… some bears in space. Basically don’t take anyone to see it who doesn’t like Monkey Dust style humour, but it’s a slightly surreal and entertaining fringe delight if you want something a bit different.
And shame on me, my delightful and tiny girlfriend reminded me that I missed out the joy of No Fit State Circus. This is particularly poor form of me because it was so stunningly engaging, a must see. Think swinging ropes, devilish high wires, theatrical delivery and the kind of heart warming atmosphere that makes you smile. Go see it. Now. Well ok you can wait til the show starts, but you should go see it then.
I’m off to leaf through the mighty tome that is the Fringe programme once more. Of course the Edinburgh Book Festival is here now too, so there’s even more excitement on the cards, well on the books I suppose? Either way, it’s going to be fun.