Tony Law’s show Enter The ToneZone was carefully crafted chaos. A skin tight black onesie clung in all the wrong places as Law performed his clowning inspired show. There was a trombone, a beach ball, a snake; as well as lessons to learn and things to take away. At its core, it’s a show about family; or its a 44 year old man having an articulate and hilarious break down. I thought we were witnessing something not quite whole and not quite ready as there seemed to be no rhyme or reason to link the trains of thought, but it all came together nicely in the end as if it was planned that way. I imagine each show will be unique, the perfect excuse to see it twice, smugly telling friends: you won’t get it, you had to be there.
Old Trunk are home grown heroes from Essex. Sadie and Sarah have a dark sense of humour and spin wonderfully imaginative stories. They had brought two shows to Edinburgh: The Bastard Children on Remington Steel and The Secret Wives of Andy Williams; it totally sucks arsehole that we could only squeeze in one. My eager finger booked tickets for around the same time on Tuesday and Thursday so we couldn’t see The Secret Wives of Andy Williams. The Bastard Children on Remington Steel is set in an orphanage; we meet four children, three rather ordinary and one extra ordinary (and not in a good way). This is story telling at its purest, four brilliant actors and one old trunk.
The Fringe is full of thing you’ve never seen before; this includes Fylm School by Simon Munnery. There is no one on stage, there is only a screen. Munnery sits behinds us and projects his face onto a screen he hoped would be larger. The benefit of this exciting medium is that it’s still live but its concentrated humour; we are forced to focus on something and it is amplify onto the screen for maximum laughter. Munnery’s last show to use this was Fylm Maker; a cabaret of songs, puns and stories. This year, he is sharing his invention/discovery. His students: Josie Long, Alex Horne and Rob Auton, are in total control of where the audience are looking. Unless you’re sitting in front of them and you keep glancing back, resulting in neck ache. It’s slightly easier to point a camera at a thing, shout ‘look at this thing’ and get a laugh when the audience don’t have many other places to look.
After Fylm School, we had a sort of nap thing: still and quiet time back at the apartment. This was the closest we got to a rest before heading out the door to see Robin Ince, Michael Legge and Daniel Kitson. We left at 9pm and would be returning 6 hours later. Ready for the Fringe show we saw with the longest title? ‘Michael Legge and Robin Ince Are Pointless Anger, Righteous Ire 3: Ooh Stick You, Your Mama Too … and Your Daddy’; that’s twenty words if you counted along with me, well done. They get angry on the audience’s behalf; wearing their throats down to the consistency of gravel and probably giving themselves ulcers. (Thank you Google for not showing images when I googled the correct spelling of ulcers, I am a fragile thing.) The structure of the show is this: I’m angry about this. I’m angry about this. I don’t value your opinion. What makes the audience angry? I still don’t value your opinion, you cunt. They then have great make up sex and do it all again the next day.
It’s only the first night and Thom’s about to see his favourite show. That’s it. Done. Dusted. Everything will be downhill from here. Daniel Kitson is a lot of people’s idols, and by people, I mean comedy nerds, stand-up anoraks and joke connoisseurs. Kitson was a popular talking point between me and Thom, a debate I may share at a later date. But for now, let’s talk about the show. We returned to The Stand. We first arrived in The Stand fourteen hours ago. We bought our tickets less than twelve hours ago. Like a special few, Kitson is more than a stand-up comedian, his shows are storytelling events. In Kitson and Fathers, he has bitter sweet telephones conversations and leaves letters to his musician who sings songs of youth, heart break and anecdotes. It was two and a half hours of laughing with friends, it may sound cheesy, but you leave with a smile on your face and trying to remember the words to a song about sliding down a mountain on your bottom as a fully grown man into a camp site during the summer holiday therefore is full of children. Who hasn’t been in that situation before?