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Blog: Fringe Report part one: FACTS

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So, as we're home from Edinburgh and a little bit settled, I thought I'd take a two part look at how it all went. The first part will be some NUMBERED THORTS, as follows:

1) It's Really Good Fun
Going to see loads of shows, having lie-ins, showing off every day and drinking beer - going to the Fringe is GRATE!

2) Free Shows Are Exactly As Good As Paying Shows
There was lots of nonsense talked this year about whether Free shows are as good as paid for ones. In my experience: yes, they totally are. You don't see as many famous people, but you do have just as much FUN. I'd tend towards preferring FREE shows if only because a) i am dead INDIE and like the idea of supporting people NOT grovelling to THE MAN and b) most of the paid ones I DID see i could fairly easily see in The London during the rest of the year.

3) I Did See Some Good Stuff
Here's the TOP SIXTEEN (I couldn't get it down any further!) shows I saw, in the order I saw them:
Mitch Benn is the 37th Beatle
Kriss Foster & Friend
Richard Herring - We're All Going to Die!
The Islanders
Dan & Dan Live
Nat Metcalfe - Enthusiast
Shall We Just See This One?
Eric and Little Ern
Johnny Awsum's To Do List
Big Daddy vs Giant Haystacks
Each of Us - Ben Moor
Barry On Arthur's Seat
Sad Faces Threw a Party
The Bravery Test
Test Tube Comedy
Storyteller's Club
Happily for my THEORISING exactly HALF are free and half were paid for! Also good for my theory, of the twenty OTHER shows I saw, the ones that were most DISAPPOINTING were slightly more geared towards the paid for than free. NOTE: I didn't include The Just Joans in any of the counts as it wasn't really a Fringe show. Whatever: I think we can conclude that I AM RIGHT either way!

4) Our Venue Was Ace But Could Have Been More So
Playing at The Dram House Upstairs/The Wilkie House/The GRV/Whatever It Gets Called Next was lovely - good location, FANTASTIC room and brilliant set-up. I just wish they'd got the whole building finished in time, as the room downstairs would have been GRATE if it had actually stayed as a BAR (we could have funnelled the F***lights crowd down there for one thing, also had BEERZ). Also calling a room you have to go DOWNSTAIRS to get to "The Attic" confused the heck out of people, and also also it would have been nice to have more than 10 minutes notice that our show was cancelled. HOWEVER!

5) Having A Real Fringe Moment Was ACE
I'm SO glad we ended up doing the show doing the road on that day, rather than just giving up. It is a memory that I shall cherish FOREVER!

6) Not Getting Reviews Is A Bit Upsetting
However much I'd like to pretend otherwise, it IS really nice to get reviews when you go to the Fringe, and the fact that we didn't get a single one was a bit disappointing. Also disappointing was the fact that we were IN for THREE competitions but won NONE of them. Oh well - at least it means that the lyrics to We Did It Anyway still make sense! Also -

7) Doing Lots Of Other Gigs Is BRILL
Apart from the show (obv) the thing I was MOST happy about this time was the fact that we both got to do LOTS of other shows. We both did Fresh Fringe Radio and Bright Club, Steve got to be ARTY at The Stand, and I did ukulele cabaret and Crunch The News. In all previous years I have LONGED to be able to do this sort of thing, and was very VERY happy that it happened this time around!

8) The Bucket Speech Is a Specialist Art
My favourite bit of the show every day was doing the Bucket Speech (i.e. when we tell people what the Free Fringe is and how they should give us CA$H) as it got more daft/FUN each day. The psychology was INTERESTING tho - on days we didn't spell it out we didn't get as much, and the days when I left off the "you don't HAVE to give us a fiver" bit we got MORE!

And this leads me nicely into the next batch of FACTS - every day we kept track of how many people had been to see us, how many free CDs they took, and how much money went in the bucket. This allows me to promise you, in a forthcoming blog, GRAPHS!

posted 23/8/2013 by MJ Hibbett

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