Demi Lardner – I Love Skeleton

By Ron Bingham

Come into the warped and crazy world that is the inside of Demi Lardner’s mind. The music is loud (very loud), the props are unusual (to downright weird) and the star of the show has some boundary issues (expect audience interaction at any time).

While I Love Skeleton is obviously very carefully structured, Demi has the skill to hide this and give off a sense of unpredictability and is at times just plain mystifying for the audience. It is also hilariously laugh out loud funny which goes some way to explaining the number of awards Demi has been given and why everyone is flocking to see this.

I would try to describe some of the sketches, but I fear they will make no sense written down. Demi’s charisma, delivery and physical punctuation is a big part of the act. Expect rude words, very close contact with the comic and a sore stomach from all the belly laughs.

I Love Skeleton is on at Assembly George Square Studios until August 26
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/demi-lardner-i-love-skeleton

Aussie invasion of 2018 Edinburgh Fringe

It’s not long now until the world’s largest fringe arts festival begins in warmer climes and again a massive contingent of Australians and expats are headed to The Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Many have traveled the Australian festival circuit and have been whipped into shape for international audiences. Some have been previously reviewed by Squirrel but remember they will have been further polished and may have been revised and reworked.

Hannah Gadsby

Last year Australian, Hannah Gadsby won Best Comedy at the Fringe, she’s had to cancel her Edinburgh Fringe run this year but there’s a lot more amazing comedy talent coming up from down under. If you are travelling anywhere near Edinburgh this August, have a look at the following list of shows and consider going to see an Australian act.

AC/DC: Australian Comedians / Dope Comedy
(MC Daniel Muggleton & various Aussie guests)
Laughing Horse @ The Counting House
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/ac-dc-australian-comedians-dope-comedy

Adam Vincent – Stuck in the Suburbs With You 

Adam Vincent

Laughing Horse @ Espionage
ttps://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/adam-vincent-stuck-in-the-suburbs-with-you

Aidan ‘Taco’ Jones – 52 Days
Laughing Horse @ City Café
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/52-days

Alex Williamson – So Wrong, It’s Wrong
Underbelly, Bristo Square
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/alex-williamson-so-wrong-it-s-wrong

Alice Fraser – Ethos

Alice Fraser

Underbelly, Bristo Square
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/alice-fraser-ethos

Andrew Roper – What Is Best in Life?
Laughing Horse @ The Free Sisters
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/andrew-roper-what-is-best-in-life

Ange Lavoipierre and Jane Watt – Luxury Split Bill
Just the Tonic at The Caves
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/luxury-split-bill

Anthony Jeannot – Life Coach (Age 14)
Laughing Horse @ The Free Sisters
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/life-coach-age-14

Ben McCarthy – Nevermind
Paradise in The Vault
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/ben-mccarthy-nevermind

Blaise White Changes the World
Three Broomsticks
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/blaise-white-changes-the-world

Brendon Burns and Colt Cabana Do Comedy and Commentary to Bad Wrestling Matches
Monkey Barrel Comedy Club
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/brendon-burns-and-colt-cabana-do-comedy-and-commentary-to-bad-wrestling-matches

Brendon Burns – Mansplainin’

Brendon Burns

Heroes @ Boteco
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/brendon-burns-mansplainin

Brett Blake – Reckless
Laughing Horse @ The Counting House
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/brett-blake-reckless

Calling My Tribe – Boo Dwyer
Assembly George Square Theatre
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/calling-my-tribe

Changing Jennifers – Improvised Improv
Outhouse
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/improvised-improv

Claire Sullivan – I Wish I Owned a Hotel for Dogs 

Claire Sullivan

Gilded Balloon Teviot
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/claire-sullivan-i-wish-i-owned-a-hotel-for-dogs

Squirrel Review:

Claire Sullivan – I Wish I Owned A Hotel For Dogs

Clara Cupcakes

Clara Cupcakes – The Worst
Underbelly, Bristo Square
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/clara-cupcakes-the-worst

Squirrel Review:

Clara Cupcakes – The Worst

Comedians Against Humanity (MC Yianni Agisilaou)

Yianni

Pleasance Dome
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/comedians-against-humanity

Squirrel Review:

Comedians Against Humanity: Hosted by Yianni Agisilaou

Comedy Boxing: New Challengers
Laughing Horse @ Espionage
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/comedy-boxing-new-challengers

Damian Clark – Extra Show
Gilded Balloon Teviot
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/damian-clark-extra-show

Daniel Connell – Mr Personality 1988

Daniel Connell

Gilded Balloon Teviot
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/daniel-connell-mr-personality-1988

Squirrel Review:

Daniel Connell – MR PERSONALITY 1988

 

Daniel Muggleton – Mouth Breather
Laughing Horse @ The Counting House
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/daniel-muggleton-mouth-breather

Demi Lardner – I Love Skeleton

Demi Lardner

Assembly George Square Studios
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/demi-lardner-i-love-skeleton

Dilruk Jayasinha – The Art of the Dil
Assembly George Square Theatre
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/dilruk-jayasinha-the-art-of-the-dil

Felicity Ward – Busting a Nut
Pleasance Courtyard
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/felicity-ward-busting-a-nut

Frank Hadchiti – The Lesbian Whisperer
Laughing Horse @ The Free Sisters
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/lesbian-whisperer

Fringe Wives Club – Glittery Clittery 
Assembly Roxy
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/fringe-wives-club-glittery-clittery

Garry Starr Performs Everything
Underbelly, Cowgate
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/garry-starr-performs-everything

George Dimarelos – A Book Lovers Comedy Show
Laughing Horse @ City Café
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/book-lovers-comedy-show

George Dimarelos – George Michael Is Greek
Laughing Horse @ City Café
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/george-michael-is-greek

Gillian English – She Wolf 

Gillian English

Voodoo Rooms
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/she-wolf

Good Evening Edinburgh, It’s Sam Kissajukian
Laughing Horse @ Espionage
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/good-evening-edinburgh-it-s-sam-kissajukian

Grant Busé – The Birds and the Beats
Gilded Balloon Teviot
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/grant-buse-the-birds-and-the-beats

Huge News with Kyron and Menschy
Gilded Balloon Rose Theatre
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/huge-news

Is This the Worst Quiz / Game Show Ever? (Edinburgh Regional Championships) Hosted by Yianni Agisilaou
Sneaky Pete’s
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/is-this-the-worst-quiz-game-show-ever-edinburgh-regional-championships-hosted-by-yianni-agisilaou

Ivan Aristeguieta – Juithy 

Ivan Aristeguieta

Pleasance Courtyard
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/ivan-aristeguieta-juithy

James McLean – Good Manners Gone Bad
Gilded Balloon Rose Theatre
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/good-manners-gone-bad

Jez Watts – #1 Comedy Great Fun Best Show
Laughing Horse @ The Free Sisters
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/1-comedy-great-fun-best-show-jez-watts

Jimeoin – Result!
Pleasance at EICC
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/jimeoin-result

Jimeoin – Roast Chicken Result!
Pleasance at EICC
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/jimeoin-roast-chicken-result

John Robertson – Sweaty, Sexy Party Party
Just the Tonic at The Tron
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/john-robertson-sweaty-sexy-party-party

John Robertson – The Dark Room
Underbelly, Cowgate
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/john-robertson-the-dark-room

Jon & Nath Like to Party
Laughing Horse @ The Free Sisters
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/jon-nath-like-to-party

Josh Glanc – Karma Karma Karma Karma Karma Chamedian 

Josh Glanc

Underbelly, Bristo Square
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/josh-glanc-karma-karma-karma-karma-karma-chamedian

Squirrel Review:

Josh Glanc: Karma Karma Karma Karma Karma Chamedian

 

Kyle Legacy – The Fresh Prince of Comedy
Laughing Horse @ Espionage
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/fresh-prince-of-comedy-kyle-legacy

Larissa Moran – Love Like 90s R’n’B
Fireside
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/love-like-90s-r-n-b

Laura Davis – Ghost Machine

Laura Davis

Underbelly, Cowgate
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/laura-davis-ghost-machine

Squirrel Review: 

Laura Davis – Ghost Machine

 

Mick Neven and Jacques Barrett – Australian Beauty
Opium
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/australian-beauty

Mick Neven – Charm Offensive
Sneaky Pete’s
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/charm-offensive

Nathan Lang – The Stuntman
Just the Tonic at The Caves
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/nathan-lang-the-stuntman

Neal Portenza’s Final Edinburgh Show Will Be a Bad Magic Show on a Bus.

Neal Portenza

BBC, ITV, Channel 4, Netflix and Amazon Prime Are All Welcome
Heroes @ Bob’s BlundaBus
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/neal-portenza-s-final-edinburgh-show-will-be-a-bad-magic-show-on-a-bus-bbc-itv-channel-4-netflix-and-amazon-prime-are-all-welcome

Nick Elleray – It’s Been Emotional
Just the Tonic at The Grassmarket Centre
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/nick-elleray-it-s-been-emotional

Oliver Coleman – Delicious
The Coffee House
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/oliver-coleman-delicious

Plumbing the Death Star Live
Just the Tonic at The Caves
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/plumbing-the-death-star-live

Rhys Nicholson

Rhys Nicholson – Seminal

Underbelly, Bristo Square
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/rhys-nicholson-seminal

Ruven Govender – Ethnic Cleansing
Laughing Horse @ The Counting House
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/ethnic-cleansing-ruven-govender

Sam Campbell – The Trough

Sam Campbell

Monkey Barrel Comedy Club
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/sam-campbell-the-trough

Sam Kissajukian – Alcohol Is Good for You
Laughing Horse @ Espionage
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/alcohol-is-good-for-you-sam-kissajukian

Sharnema Nougar & David Tieck – Two Little Dickheads
Just the Tonic at The Mash House
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/two-little-dickheads

Sofie Prints – Jesus Was a Rape Baby
Three Broomsticks
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/jesus-was-a-rape-baby

Steen Raskopoulos and Carlo Ritchie – The Bear Pack

Bear Pack

Underbelly, Cowgate
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/bear-pack

Squirrel Review:

The Bear Pack – Carlo Ritchie and Steen Raskopoulos

Steen Raskopoulos – Stay
Underbelly, Cowgate
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/steen-raskopoulos-stay

The Stevenson Experience – Spot the Difference
Assembly George Square Studios
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/stevenson-experience-spot-the-difference

Stuart Bowden – Our Molecules
Underbelly, Bristo Square
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/stuart-bowden-our-molecules

Tenuous Link – Unexpected Inheritance
PQA Venues @Riddle’s Court
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/unexpected-inheritance

Tessa Waters – Fully Sik 

Tessa Waters

Heroes @ The SpiegelYurt
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/tessa-waters-fully-sik

Thao Thanh Cao – Appropriately Inappropriate
Laughing Horse @ Harry’s Southside
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/appropriately-inappropriate

The Ashes: A Comedy Showdown
Liquid Room Annexe/Warehouse
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/ashes-a-comedy-showdown

The Nasty Show
Laughing Horse @ The Free Sisters
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/nasty-show

Thomas Green – Doubting Thomas
Gilded Balloon Teviot
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/thomas-green-doubting-thomas

Time Out With Ross Voss
Laughing Horse @ Moriarty’s
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/time-out-with-ross-voss

The Travellin’ Man Comedy Showcase (MC Aidan ‘Taco’ Jones)
Laughing Horse @ Harry’s Southside
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/travellin-man-comedy-showcase

The Travelling Sisters – Toupé 

The Travelling Sisters

Gilded Balloon Teviot
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/travelling-sisters-toupe

Squirrel Review:

The Travelling Sisters – Toupé

Tom Walker – Honk Honk Honk Honk Honk 

Tom Walker

Underbelly, Bristo Square
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/tom-walker-honk-honk-honk-honk-honk

Squirrel Review:

Tom Walker: Honk Honk Honk Honk Honk

Tri-Nations Comedy
Laughing Horse @ The Counting House
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/tri-nations-comedy

Wil Greenway – Either Side of Everything
Underbelly, Bristo Square
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/wil-greenway-either-side-of-everything

Yianni Agisilaou – I, Human
Pleasance Dome
https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/yianni-agisilaou-i-human

Melbourne International Comedy Festival Awards for 2018

This year instead of being presented in the middle of the night at the Festival Club as is traditional, The Melbourne International Comedy Festival Awards were instead presented at 1pm in the afternoon at Belleville. It was more relaxed and civilised with drinks and nibblies (and better lighting for photos) and it was great knowing that everyone in the room was involved and invested in the results, but sort of sad that it was restricted to invite only. I was very lucky to be invited, but other fans on the rim of the festival, but just as invested would have been sad (as I was when this happened once in the past) to not be a part of that middle of the night wild excitement and joy when a favourite, or someone you’ve discovered wins an award.

I can’t deny that there was some surprise as well as delight for Sam Campbell’s win. Although he has been performing in Sydney for a while and getting some TV work (you may have seen him on The Checkout), he’s still pretty much under the radar of the general public. We fell in love with his work when we saw Zanzoop! early in it’s run in 2016 and spent the rest of the Festival telling anyone who would listen that they should go and see the strange talk show hosted by a wise cracking alien in a back alley nightclub. This year we loved both shows he was involved with; his own, The Trough and Anne Edmond’s Helen Bidou – Enter the Spinnaker Lounge where he played Helen’s long suffering, very awkward son Connor.

2018 AWARD WINNERS

Hannah Gadsby Presenting The Barry Award from New York

Barry Award, for the best show: Sam Campbell The Trough  

Nominees for The Barry Award:
Alex Edelman (USA)- Just for Us 
Anne Edmonds – as Helen Bidou – Enter the Spinaker Lounge
Tim Key (UK) – Megadate
Lano & Woodley (Colin Lane and Frank Woodley) – Fly!
Rose Matafeo (NZ) – Horndog!
Celia Pacquola – All Talk
Natalie Palamides (USA) – Laid

 

The Best Newcomer: Danielle Walker Bush Rat 

Danielle Walker

This award was presented by Sarah Dodds of Soho Theatre who will be bringing Danielle to London to make her Debut at The Soho Theatre.

Nominees for The Best Newcomer Award:
Paul Williams(NZ) – Summertime Love
Stephanie Tisdell – Identity Steft
Garry Starr – Performs Everything
Lewis Garnham – The Smartest Idiot You’ll Ever Meet
Nadia Collins – Virgin Bloody Mary

 

The Golden Gibbo Award (for an artistic independent production): 

Cam Venn


Cam Venn for 
Charles Horse Lays An Egg
The prize is a Bottle of Red Wine and was presented by Lynda Gibson’s Niece Emma Maye Gibson, also known as Betty Grumble

Nominees for The Golden Gibbo Award:
Sophie Joske and Anna Piper Scott  – Almost Lesbians
Garry Starr  – Performs Everything 
Julia Rorke & Elysia Hall – Not Another F***** B**** In India
Michelle Brasier & Laura Frew
(Double Denim) – Double Denim Adventure Show]

Lano & Woodley

People’s Choice Award:
Lano & Woodley – Fly!

This award signifies that Fly! sold the most tickets at this year’s Festival.

 

The Directors’ Choice Award:
Michelle Brasier and Laura Frew for Double Denim Adventure Show

 

 

The Pinder Prize: Demi Lardner – I Love Skeleton 
This Award funds her trip to the Edinburgh Fringe
to perform at Assembly Festival.

 

 

Heath Franklin

Piece of Wood Award (Peer Award from other comedians):
Heath Franklin – Bogan Jesus 

 

Funny Tonne Winner: Alasdair Bryant (76 Shows)

Deadly Funny National Grand Final winner: Leon Filewood (QLD)

RAW Comedy Grand Final Winner: Bec Melrose (NSW)  
Bec has won a trip to The Edinburgh Fringe Festival to compete in So You Think You’re Funny?.
RAW Runners-Up: Gavin Sempel (VIC), Emma Holland (ACT)

Class Clowns National Grand Final Winners Liam Adam, Carlin Carruth & Kyle Bennett (QLD) as ‘Awkward’!
Class Clowns Runners-Up:
Dusty Diddle (VIC),
Nina Cowley-Mousinho (QLD)
Shiloh Rea (QLD)
Nicholas Doring (NSW)

Squirrel writers’ 2017 Edinburgh Fringe Round up

So that was the 70th anniversary of the Edinburgh Fringe and Festival. Once again the weather was changeable, with reports that it was the wettest summer in Scotland for 80 years. We arrived in the rain, but the frequent showers were never enough to dampen our enthusiasm. There were four Squirrels in Edinburgh this year and all of us have written below about shows we’ve loved, or not loved, or not had the chance to write about previously.

Hannah GadsbyThe Big news to come out of this special anniversary festival is that Australia’s own multi award winning (The Barry, The Helpmann, Adelaide Best Comedy) comedy champion Hannah Gadsby has won the Best Comedy Show Award at Edinburgh. It was a joint win with John Robins and my impression is that their shows are a sort of yin and yang, with John’s show The Darkness of Robins being an anguished cry of help from the depths of a breakup with his more famous girlfriend Sara Pascoe (who was doing her own take on the breakup in an equally well reviewed but not nominated Fringe show Lads, Lads, Lads) and Hannah’s being a powerful, rallying rant of revelation against the apocalypse, Nanette. Previous Australian winners of Best Comedy at Edinburgh Fringe are Los Trios Ringbarkus, Lano & Woodley, Brendon Burns and Sam Simmons.

Other nominees for the 2017 Edinburgh Best Comedy Award were Ahir Shah, Elf Lyons, Jordan Brookes, Mae Martin, Mat Ewins, Sophie Wilan and Spencer Jones.

Best Newcomer Winner at Edinburgh Fringe was Natalie Palamides for Laid. The Nominees for Best Newcomer were; Chris Washington, Darren Harriott, Ed Night, Kwame Asante, Lauren Pattison, Lucy Pearman and Rob Kemp.

Rob Kemp did win Comedians’ Choice Award for Best Performer and Mat Ewins Presents Adventureman 7: The Return of Adventureman won best Comedians’ Choice Award Best Show.

Hannah will bring Nanette for its premiere season at the Sydney Opera House from  September 27 – October 8, before a string of encore performances at the Arts Centre Melbourne from Nov 18 culminating in Hamer Hall on Dec 1. I shouldn’t have to urge you to see it, if you’ve missed out on it so far.

Squirrel writers’ Edinburgh Fringe Round up

Colin Flaherty

My highlights at Fringe happen to be ones that I have reviewed, in particular Big Howard Little Howard

Big Howard, Little Howard (Howard Read) – Man and Boy

Andrew O’Neill’s Black Magick Fun Hour

Simon Munnery – Renegade Plumber

I also enjoyed Stuart Goldsmith – Like I Mean It, a hilarious hour that follows on from his previous show Compared to What where he continues to explore life with his new wife and son. He presents plenty of brilliant observations and plays around with the bird with clipped wings husband angle perfectly.

One off event WiFi Wars was a hoot, even though many of the games refused to play correctly on my underpowered tablet (I was only expecting to word process and web surf on it after all!). This late night, tech heavy show had punters competing individually as well as in teams. We laughed, we cheered and we got our geek on!

I had high hopes for Boris & Sergey’s One Man Extravaganza, an ambitious show featuring complicated puppetry, a crazy blurb and some wacky characters but I found it overlong and not enough laughs to hold my attention. Apart from the wonderful voicing of the characters, the expressionless puppets failed to connect with me.

Lisa Clark

I loved all the shows I reviewed with Jayde Adams (Is Jayded) being the exciting new discovery of the Fringe for me. The following are shows I loved but did not get a Squirrel write up.

Craig Ferguson ShowCraig Ferguson – The Craig Ferguson Show. All the Squirrels saw Craig’s recording of his live radio show and we all enjoyed it. Starting at 11.30pm to go live for drive time in the USA as well as Canada and Mexico, it went for 2 hours and consisted of two very entertaining in-depth chats with performers who were old friends of Craig. In our case an old close friend impressionist/comedian Jan Ravens and Scottish writer Iain Rankin.

Chris Coltrane – Make Love & Smash Fascism – a rather lovely, warm and approachable political comedian who taught me about the evils of Neo Liberalism which is extreme capitalism & pro privatisation of everything which basically seems to be the road to anarchy.

Dave Johns – I, Fillum Star. Dave Johns has been a jobbing comedian all his life and just as he was planning his retirement (he was going to give kids donkey rides at the seaside), he got a part in a film. On the 1st day director Ken Loach said, oh by the way the film is named after your character because you are the lead. I, Daniel Blake won a swag of awards taking Dave to Cannes and the BAFTAs and giving him a cracking tale to tell, and being a great comedian means Dave knows how to tell it for maximum laughs. This was a joy to experience with the message that it’s never too late.

Yianni Agisilaou – Pockets of Equality. As the title suggests, it’s about sexual politics and pockets. More importantly it was a very personal heartwarming show about love and family and one of the best shows I’ve ever seen Yianni do.

Disappointing shows were; Boris & Sergey’s One Man Extravaganza, a puppet show where three puppeteers per puppet failed to give the faceless repulsive puppets any personality, or make an interesting show. Then there was The Great Comedy Cooking Challenge which in no way described the show at all. The two guys had not planned their Festival show at all leaving the audience more bemused than amused and the main one telling the story of how he fell in love with cooking kept saying “I think that might’ve gotten a better laugh”. Nup.

Back to other highlights for me which were the inimitable and indefatigable Doug Anthony Allstars – Near Death Experience, Wifi Wars live online gaming which was a completely different kind of Festival show and finally, Simon Munnery doing a gorgeously crafted show about fixing things, bookended by two great songs. I was lucky to see Simon when Renegade Plumber had been bedded in and found it to be the tightest show I’ve seen of his in years, it was a beautiful blend of the personal and political, with the title perfectly describing the show.

Phoebe O’Brien

Fringe Shows that were highlights not formally reviewed

2 Become 1

The Swipe Right Theatre Company have created a fun and fabulous night that will capture your heart with its upbeat mix of 90’s music. It will also hit you right in the funny bone with A grade performances from a heavenly cast.

The cast of four stunning vocalists sing the hits; from Destiny’s Child to Des’ree to the Spice Girls and so many more! The 90’s bangers are intertwined within a story of friendship and heartbreak, as one of character’s, Jess breaks up with her boyfriend. After the news, her best gal pals do the only thing that would obviously ‘help’ Jess from a breakdown due to the breakup…speed dating.
At its core ‘2 Become 1’ is heartfelt and funny. You can even have a little boogie and sing-a-long of your own while you’re there. Now tell me, what more could you want? Could you really, really want?

David Quirk – Cowboy MouthDavid Quirk Cowboy mouth

After missing David Quirk during the Melbourne International Comedy Festival, there was no better option than to catch his show ‘Cowboy Mouth’ at the Fringe. Quirk is the king when it comes to long form narrative story-telling, his tales from his childhood and the awkward meeting with his neighbour were tops.

Amongst the anecdotes, the show was knitted together with audio clips of the recollections of dreams people have had about him.
ps. Quirk performed on a bus and had an excellent jacket. Very cool.

Britney – John
A hidden treasure amongst the thousands of incredible Fringe shows was the sketch duo behind John. Charly Clive and Ellen Robertson are two 20 something year old mates from the UK, who make up ‘Britney’.

In their show ‘John’, the pair reminisce about the time they were just out of high school, exploring America and working on a documentary about president of Congress; John Hancock. For the documentary, they filmed interviews around America with other men with the same name. Their trip abroad became the centre for the show, with critique of the footage and their interviewing technique strong points of the show. Their ability to create stand-alone vignettes and natural storytelling was a highlight, revealing the effort both Clive and Robertson put into their follow up to their previous show ‘Britney’…which is also now the name of their duo, not confusing at all. I strongly believe we will be hearing big things from these two talented performers.

Alice Marshall – Blood
In her show solo show Blood, Alice Marshall captivates her audience with wonderfully executed character sketch comedy. Marshall has great comedic timing, while delivering a punchy hour of pure joy. I can’t wait to see more of her work further down the track.

Ron Bingham

My Squirrel fest started with a couple of excellent Aussie acts which turned out to be highlights Laura Davis (Cake in the Rain) and the Doug Anthony All Stars (Near Death Experience).

The three other shows that made me laugh out loud the most were:

Lucy Pearman – Maid of Cabbage Look What Youu Made Me Do

Demi Lardner – Look What You Made Me Do

Mark Steel – Every Little Thing’s Gonna Be Alright.

Lucy and Demi for their props and general air of controlled chaos, and Mark for his political insights and honesty about his recent marital troubles. I also enjoyed Muriel -(Bad Master) for their use of multimedia and fun sketches and The Canon -(A Literary Sketch Show) for their literary humour

I saw some fabulous new talent (two were deservedly nominated for best newcomer – Lauren Pattison and Lucy Pearman) and caught up with some excellent established acts. Saw some early shows and some late ones, drank a little too much of the free alcohol early on, nearly got blown off the top of Arthurs Seat after seeing a show up there called This Arthur’s Seat Belongs to Lionel Richie, and missed a lot of acts (ones I regret most not managing to fit into my schedule include Sarah Kendall, Ingrid Oliver and Hannah Gadsby). Importantly I only saw two shows which didn’t achieve the high standard I expect. Met a lot of lovely people, as always, and have already pre-booked for next year.

Demi Lardner : Look what you made me do

By Ron Bingham
Look What Youu Made Me Do

This show is a corker! From the first moment that Demi, in the guise of Gavin, enters the stage we are treated to a whirlwind hour of props, sketches and general chaos.

Based loosely on the story of a middle aged man trapped in his basement, he’s forced to answer questions for a phone survey and suffers a number of hallucinations. There are songs and dances (including a bit of strobe lighting), some dubious drawings (one of which is available as a postcard at the end of the show), a sidekick in the form of one of the ladies from the show Double Denim and a main actor who performs a well scripted hour. It’s not at all highbrow comedy and had the audience in stitches.

This show has won a couple of awards (including the Melbourne International Comedy Festival Director’s Choice) and it really delivers on the laughs. There are some rude words, a naughtily erotic story and one truly appalling pun to do with a horse.

This is a show that won’t disappoint.   

Look what you made me do is on at Underbelly, Cowgate until August 27

https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/demi-lardner-look-what-you-made-me-do

Melbourne International Comedy Festival Award Nominees

On Monday morning at the Spiegeltent the Nominees for the 2016 Melbourne International Comedy Festival Awards were Announced with the aid of Guest Barry Humphries. You may have heard of him, The Barry Award is named after him.

Congratulations to all the phenomenal Nominees!

The Golden Gibbo 

Asher Treleaven & Gypsy Wood – Peter & Bambi Heaven – The Magic Inside

Luis Brown – Lessons With Luis

Tommy Dassallo – Little Golden Dassallo

Zoe Coombs Marr – Dave Trigger Warning

Best Newcomer Barry Announcing the Barry's

Demi Lardner – Life Mechanic

Guy Montgomery (NZ) – Guy Montcomedy

Tom Walker – Beep Boop

Rose Matafeo (NZ) – Finally Dead

The Barry Award

Zoe Coombs Marr – Dave Trigger Warning

Damien Power – Sell Mum into Slavery

Luisa Omielan (UK) – Am I Right Ladies?!

Tom Ballard – The World Keeps Happening

Anne Edmonds That’s Eddotainment

David O’Doherty (IRE) – We Are All In The Gutter, But Some Of Us Are Looking At David O’Doherty

Rhys Nicholson – Bone Fide

There are more Awards that will be announced next weekend.

Also RAW Comedy Award for 2016 was won by Danielle Walker from Victoria