Part of WUWO Magazine’s ‘Comedy Take Over’ edition.
WUWO Magazine invites Aisling Bea to sprinkle her wisdom on what to do, and what NOT to do, at this year’s comedy festivities.
Joe Public’s Edinburgh Festival Dos and Don’ts.
Off to the biggest comedy festival in the world for a bit of a laugh? GO NOWHERE, until you’ve read my doose and downts.
…KILL BIRDS WITH STONES
Guys, it’s a METAPHOR for doing more than one thing at once. Do NOT literally go throwing stones at innocent sparrows or some poor Mary Magdalene figure. No. I mean that you won’t be able to see all of the acts you want to, so go see ensemble shows like Spank! BBC Presents, Storytellers Club OR the PLAY that I’M in; THE INTERVENTION has Phil Nichol, Jan Ravens, Waen Shepard and many more in it. (The Assembly Rooms, 54 George Street, Edinburgh, EH2 2LR)
As an Irish woman I’m always constantly aware of where the nearest supply of potatoes are just in case there’s another surprise famine. While in Edinburgh, you may get swept away by good times and cider and forget to eat properly. Go healthy. The Baked Potato Shop on Cockburn Street has the finest carbohydrates you’ll ever put in your mouth. They’ll line your belly and you can put the leftovers in your pockets to keep your trousers warm.
….KISS A COMEDIAN.
If funny turns you on, then the streets of Edinburgh are paved with comedy gold. “Oh Aisling, an exalted COMEDIAN would NEVER go for a lowly Joe Public, like ME”, THINK AGAIN my campadre! Comedians do their job because of a deep inner sadness. The festival is designed to expose this inner sadness, which makes it the PERFECT time to swoop. Hang around the venue where your target’s show is on, put a cardigan over your “Comedy is my Rock’n’Roll” teeshirt and go for it. But BEWARE, it will cost you. Up to one whole drink. If you buy a comedian one whole drink of alcohol, there is a 100-100% chance that you are about to pull.
…GO SEE SOMEONE WHO-IS-ABOUT-TO-BE-AND-KIND-OF-IS-BUT-ISN’T-TOTALLY-OFF-THE-TELLY…YET.
The bigger acts from TV go on tour all the time. Edinburgh is the perfect opportunity to see people you may not have heard of. Take a risk with your pennies. See some up and coming talent. They need your laughter more, so you’ll leave pumped with the power of having helped the little guy. In four years you’ll be able to say “I saw them before they were involved in that celebrity scandal”. Some of my faves are Celia Pacquola, Ford & Akram, Humphrey Ker, Sonya Kelly, Sara Pascoe, McNeil and Pamphilon, Cariad Lloyd, Thom Tuck, Dan Wright, Rachel Ann Stubbings & Lou Sanders.
…DATE WITH A DIFFERENCE
The underground ghost tours are VERY SCARY and the perfect way to cop a feel in the dark. If, however, you’re prone to pants accidents when frightened, it may be better to stick to above ground romance and keep your spirits in your cranberry juice. The Meadows are a lovely green area beside George’s Square where you can picnic and fondle in peace.
…KISS A COMEDIAN
Comedians do their job because of a deep inner sadness. The Edinburgh Festival is designed to expose this inner sadness and this is the WORST time to swoop. If you are hanging around the venue where their show is on, put a cardigan over your “I’m a really secure happy person” teeshirt and avoid eye contact. Once they get your heart, they grab onto it like a barnacle and never let go. And it will never really be about you.
….WEAR A KILT
Unless you are an old American man whose family is actually of Scaddish origin.
…HECKLE IF YOU ARE ACTUALLY FUNNY
Hecklers are born, not made. Please don’t abuse the age old practice by shouting out something funny during a gig. Heckling is an art form performed by natural eejits and only they can know exactly how to ruin a punch line by shouting a perfect “Show us your tits” or “It’s Greg’s birthday!”. Hecklers have paid good money to go into those gigs and not listen and shout out things they think of. Show some respect.
….PRETEND YOU’RE BLIND WHEN STREET PERFORMERS GET THEIR HAT OUT.
“Whaaat? I didn’t see a thing! Where’s my dog gone?” If you stopped and watched, then you’ve entered into an ancient contract. No one is asking for paper dollars, just a few coppers as a high five for them sticking a knife down their throat to entertain your child/ moany other half.
…GET ANNOYED BY FLYER-ERses.
It’s Edinburgh. There are thousands of acts trying to sell you their show. Many good. many bad, all with flyers. Take one, shove it in your bag/pocket/mouth, bring it home, recycle/ burn it and be glad that you were never allowed to have a middle class dream and that you have a real job.
Name: Aisling Bea
Show Name:The Intervention
Where: The Assembly Rooms
Dates: 1-26 Aug excluding 13