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

The Raw Comedy National Grand Final 2018

By Hooi Khaw 

After judging more than 1000 entrants, Raw Comedy brings 12 national finalists to the stage to compete for the opportunity to perform at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

The Raw Comedy National Grand Final is hosted by the amicable Ivan Aristeguieta who is warm and personable, and keeps the energy high for all of the contestants throughout the show.

Gavin Sempel starts the show, immediately getting the audience onside with commentary about his slender appearance, moving onto humorous anecdotes from his life. Having seen his set at the state finals, there is something in his delivery that is still joyfully entertaining to watch the second time around.

Sian Smyth follows next, with some polarizing punch lines. The topics span from social work, to porn, to Gandhi, and she provokes both cheers and groans from the audience at different points.

The third contestant is Jane New, whose distinctive stage persona could be easily attributed to nerves. She distinguishes herself as a writer, rather than a comedian, and she gets sprinkled laughter as the crowd warms to her particular brand of humour.

Alex Hall-Evans starts the second bracket speaking of sexiness, and his humour seems typically millennial. Hall-Evans interacts well with the crowd, and generously applies hyperbole to get the laughs.

Next up is Emma Holland who uses a paper fortuneteller to warm up the crowd. She succeeds with weirdly specific questions, and the genius is in the deliberately warped assumptions inherent in those questions. Holland then moves onto translating emojis for the crowd, and the explanations get progressively more absurd as she cycles through them.

Scout Boxall follows next, specializing in earnest set ups, which are then contrasted with on the nose absurdity. The laughs come from hitting the target of the criteria that Boxall has set, but also from the weird exploration of the themes, and the contrast between them. Boxall is a standout, closing her set with the only musical number of the show.

Bronwyn Kuss is deadpan in discussing body image and self esteem, but there is something unconvincing in the delivery that the audience struggles to relate to.

Next, Emo bursts onto the stage with a strong stage presence, interacting with the crowd, and mining themes of race, and sex for comedy. Although the material is not the most original from the night, Emo gets the crowd laughing with his charisma and classic jokes.

Ryan McArthur follows with his set focused on awkward experiences. The first example lands well, and the audience audibly relates. From there it starts to feel more like someone venting about experiences that they can’t let go of, and the audience is unwilling to follow McArthur down this path of indulgence.

Matthew Vasquez starts the last bracket with some racial humour relating to his South American heritage. Vasquez’s style is distinctive, in that he seems to say a punch line, and hold for applause or laughter. It’s surprising to see how often this pays off, and you can hear the audience catching up with Vasquez’s thoughts as pockets of laughter start bursting in the crowd during the pause.

Bec Melrose delivers one of the more varied sets of the night. With cleverly constructed jokes, Melrose explores issues of gender, politics, and productivity with a clear point of view.

The last contestant for the night is Kevin Jin, who speaks mostly about race and dating. Although these topics are frequently visited in stand up, Jin is still able to surprise and delight with his take on these. Jin has an affable style, and his comedy is easy to enjoy.

Without spoiling the big reveal for when the Raw Comedy National Grand Final is aired on SBS, it is safe to say that there was fierce competition this night, and throughout the state level heats. Although only one lucky winner gets the prize of a trip to Edinburgh, it’s clear that there is a bright future ahead of all of these brave, funny, and clever stand ups.

Raw Comedy National Grand Final was on April 15 at The Melbourne Town Hall.

Ivan Aristeguieta: Matador

By Lisa Clark 

Ivan Aristeguieta seems to have arrived on the Australian comedy scene a fully formed stand up star. That’s because, like any comedy star who seems to be an overnight success he has actually had many years on the boards. He started as a comedian in Venezuela and has been working hard since emigrating; learning our culture and language and getting himself to the world class level of stand-up he’s at now. It’s been a journey of discovery about himself, as well as the world around him.

In the past Ivan’s work has been about the differences between Australia and Venezuela and food, this one is more deeply autobiographical, about his family’s roots in Spain and the passionate nature of their culture. It’s about Duende, love, transformation and Balls (yes, also surprisingly, cricket!). Ivan takes his audience beyond just the differences in culture to the differences between the First and Third world problems. When he jokes about celebrating just surviving a day in violent Venezuela an audience member behind me blurts out ‘So true!’ through his guffaws.

Ivan carefully constructs Matador like a master craftsman, with major set pieces containing joke upon joke within jokes. So many major and minor observations and asides are crammed in with all the skills at his disposal but he makes sure the joins are invisible so you can relax in safe hands and roll with the laughs. Audio visual support is used sparely and wisely. He opens the show with some delightful pictures of his family and of himself as a child in an adorable Matador outfit.

I cannot think of another act I’ve seen where everyone who attends is guaranteed an awesome time. As a bonus a smaller clique in the audience gets to enjoy Ivan’s brilliant Kel Balnaves impersonation while everyone else just admires his ability to do an Aussie accent. I wish Ivan Mucha Mierda for the rest of the run.

Ivan Aristeguieta performs Matador at the Victoria Hotel

https://www.comedyfestival.com.au/2018/shows/ivan-aristeguieta-matador

5 Good Reasons to See Ivan Aristeguieta – Lost in Pronunciation

1. I’m a Spanish speaking comedian on a bridging visa. Please come, before some guy in budgie smugglers pushes me off the bridge (into Papua New Guinea).

2. Seriously! I’ve been here for two years! My home country is in trouble. If you don’t come to my show, I’ll have to go on the dole, and you’ll make it so the racists are right.

3. I will make you a better lover, using my special Latino formula: 90% Antonio Banderas, 10% Ricky Martin. (This is not a promise, but if I say it in my accent, you’ll believe me)

4. You will hear a legendary Australian rock song in SALSA. (This is a promise!) Or as I like to call it: “acca daccas with maracas”.

5. You’ll laugh a lot. And if you don’t, I’ll eat my hat. (You don’t want me to do that. It’s a good hat)

Ivan Aristeguieta – Lost in Pronunciation is on at The Portland Hotel in the Pool Room.

http://www.comedyfestival.com.au/2014/season/shows/lost-in-pronunciation-ivan-aristeguieta