Monday, 20 June 2011

Edinburgh Previews: Legge, Aaron, Fulcher, Ward & Herring

Michael Legge & Rich Fulcher
There's nothing I like more than a gig near to my house. Well there is one thing. A free gig near to my house. So today I headed to The Wilmington Arms. This was the venue for my first comedy gig  a couple of years ago (apart from a Billy Connolly gig in the 90s and Rik Mayall and Ben Elton in 1985). Well, the first gig I attended before becoming a comedy regular. I'm sure you get the point.

That time it was Richard Herring compering a group of geeky students and lecturers who were of mixed abilities. Still, it was a fun day out. Today it was Edinburgh previews from Bennett Arron, Michael Legge and The Mighty Boosh's Rich Fulcher.

 Before the gig I met up with Jack, who pointed out that the pub smelled of piss. He wasn't wrong. The pub did smell a bit pissy. Anyway, joining us later were Sir Bob (the birthday boy), Richard, and Marco. I also bumped into fellow Collins & Herring jingle writer Rose. We didn't get much of a chance to chat but hopefully will see more of her at tomorrow's AIOTM.

The gig started with Bennett Aaron. His gentle (not gentile) Jewish / Welsh humour went down nicely, but not being Welsh or Jewish had no real reference point other than what I've heard from Joan Rivers and Jackie Mason (and Max Boyce). It was a lot of fun, but I think some of the jokes may have gone over my head.

Michael Legge was on next. "Curse Sir Walter Raleigh" is his first solo show that he will be performing at the Fringe. I had seen a preview of this last year when he played at the Hen & Chickens with Andrew Collins (doing his Secret Dancing show). He didn't manage to take it to Edinburgh then, but has managed to book the venue this time. It's a show all about the importance of manners. Michael is a very well-mannered man. Unless you are rude, in which case all bets are off. As usual I enjoyed myself and enjoyed his contradictory stories about whether to get "involved" or not. We really enjoyed his story of being rescued by Hunter from Gladiators, as well as explaining to a lad in the front row why you should never get involved if someone drops their Ventolin inhaler. This is a set that will be fantastic once it is tightened up and the loose ends are dispensed with. There was no mention of Sir Walter Raleigh at all.

Rich Fulcher was on at the end and he was previewing his "Tiny Acts Of Rebellion". In fact - watch this clip from the Craig Ferguson Show. Most of the set was him reading from his book, and about various tiny ways to stick it to "the man"

After the show, Richard wimped out and Sir Bob, Jack and I headed to The New Red Lion Theatre and saw, first of all, the guy from Stand Up Hero who I thought was great - an accountant who was really up for anything. he looks like an accountant, he sounds like an accountant, but he is absolutely brilliant! Next was Danielle Ward. I saw her at The Comedy Crawl but know her best from her contributions to the Dave Gorman shows on Absolute Radio. She has quite a unique voice that does sound rather sarcastic by default, and quite a twisted dark sense of humour.

Richard Herring
After this was a comedian who, (how can I put this kindly), perhaps wasn't to my taste. Let's not hang around... Let's not say anymore. She probably thought she was avant-garde. But we all agreed that we weren't huge fans. Bob thinks I am being too kind however. He thinks "the naive arrogance of performing ill-prepared drivel was in itself almost entertaining."

Richard Herring was on to close the night and did some new material about "What Is Love Anyway" (WILA) It was a lot of fun and the show is coming together nicely. There were a couple sitting beside me who had equal confusion about the previous act and who had never heard of Herring. As time went on, I could see that they were really enjoying themselves. It's always nice to see new people at gigs seeing things for the first time and the effect it has on them. Much more so than through my tired, jaded eyes. Just for me (I like to think) he included my new favourite routine - "Give Me Head Till I'm Dead"

It was a fun Sunday. It's now Monday morning and I half to be at AIOTM in 12 hours. My eyes are sleepy, my head hurts a bit, but I'll see you all there!

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