The Squirrels Warm Up to Melbourne Fringe 2014

By Lisa Clark

It’s spring and we’re excitedly shaking off the cold with lots of nuts in store. Melbourne Fringe Festival tends to be particularly nutty with comedians taking risks for our entertainment. Yum.

As usual we will be reviewing our fluffy tails off and the following article is a brief overview with some of the acts that have whet our appetites and as usual our list of shows that we have previously reviewed. Here’s hoping that this has you salivating for Fringey treats.

Shows previously reviewed

Dan Willis – Control Alt Delete

Dr Professor Neal Portenza performs his own autopsy live on Stage

Fancy Boy Variety Show

I Love Green Guide Letters Live

Kate Dehnert – Noise Adventure

Lisa-Skye – Art Sex & Snacks: The Talk Show

Rama Nicholas – After Ever After

Steen Raskopoulos – I’m wearing two suits because I mean business.

Xavier Toby – ‘Mining’ My Own Business

Other shows re-appearing at Fringe that you can catch up with if you missed them first time round include: Dan Willis – The Walking DeadDay of the Dead by Cath Styles, Fiona O’Loughlin – My Brilliant Career and Pajama Party

International Acts coming to Melbourne Fringe this year include Arj Barker trying out some stuff in Keeper or Crapper and Donnell Rawlings of Chappelle’s Show and The Wire doing Unchained for one night in Thornbury. Local big names you might know from the telly who are putting on Fringe shows include Heath Franklin in Tiny Horse, Big World, Josh Earl is a Square Peg and Claire Hooper in School Camp.

There is a charity comedy debate arguing “That Technology will Save Us” and if you enjoy comedy with a political bent you can rely on Rod Quontock who’s giving us an Invitation to a Revolution and the showcase of Melbourne political comedy Political Assylum.

Instead of Heckling Christ we’ll be encouraged by Joshua Ladgrove to Come Heckle [Joe] Hockey which should be much less controversial. Sam Marzden with Peculiar Avenue and Watson with Who’s Afraid of The Dark? are adding terror to the laughs by doing horror-comedy shows.

There are always comedians performing in interesting shows in the other sections of the Fringe. In the Performance section there are funny plays like Bucket’s List with Justin Kennedy, geeky rom-com Who are You Supposed to be? with Rob Lloyd and the astrological The Moon in Me with Dylan Cole. In the Cabaret section there are always laughs to be had especially with Gillian Cosgriff’s new show Whelmed and Ethal Chop’s return to The Fringe with the terrifying sounding Ethel Chop Has a Pianist. Geraldine Quinn will be bringing her extraordinary talent to The Festival Club with Video Killed the Cabaret Star.

Late night shows are a chance to get a taste of various Fringe acts. The Imperial Late night shows are called Up Late & Loose hosted by Lori Bell and Geraldine Hickey. The Court House Hotel is doing Night Court on Friday and Saturday nights and there is always something on at the Festival Club at the North Melbourne Town Hall nearby.

A final note to mention that Date Night with Simon Taylor has been cancelled.

I could go on but there is too much on to fit here. So many shows and so little time. Do as we do: as well as checking out a favourite, try seeing someone you’ve never heard of, get out of your comfort zone – It’s Fringe!

The Melbourne Fringe Festival is on from Sept 17 to Oct 5 and although the club is at the North Melbourne Town Hall there are major comedy venues in the CBD and others dotted around the city. For more information check out the Fringe Festival Website