Massive Horse, Tiny Hawkins

I think I’m finally over this Fringe Flu: my appetite is on the way back, I’ve taken a couple of days off running, and I’m planning something fun for my day off on Tuesday. I’m hoping that these last few days will be the final push on the pedals as we reach the top of the hill, and the last week will be coasting joyously down the other side. I’m wrong, aren’t I?

Well I must be enjoying it, because I went to a meeting – well, seminar – well, they gave me a brochure and a free gin and tonic – about the Brighton Fringe 2013. It’s massively tempting to do an hour of stand up there, but more tempting to do an hour of storytelling as part of the literary arm of the Fringe. It’s easier to stand out with less competition, there is a very nice venue, and last year they were sponsored by Hendrick’s gin, so everyone got a free G&T included in the price of their ticket. Ideally I’d do two shows: straight stand up as part of the free fringe in the evening, and a storytelling show in the afternoon, so one ticketed, one not. It’ll be interesting to see whether there is any crossover with audiences, and which makes the most money!

After the drinks, hijinks. To Massive Horse, whose show is, unhappily for you, almost unexplainable. Considering I barely expend a calorie onstage, these guys are like a tornado: four fifths of the way through the show, they dropped to the ground and did press ups. They must eat like Cris Hoy. They demurred from coming to see my show as they had ‘important edits’ to do on their film footage, though the real reason was that Canz (who presumably works in fifteen-day rotation with his identical siblings Uhn, Der, Twah, etc.) was being force-fed raw eggs and pasta like a goose and Rick (can’t think of a joke – see how lazy I am?) was having his organs replaced. And all worth it, because it’s an amazing, creative, unique show. I’m horrified to report that Canz and Rick, as well as being talented, also show signs of being nice people. Sickening.

They did put me in a very happy place when my show came round. It was quiet in Grassmarket, and in the Dragonfly, but we scraped together a small but charming audience, and did a show – not quite our regular show, but more a string of chat, banter and whimsy. I got names and riffed a bit around what people did, told some stories about hecklers, talked a bit about awful gigs (this always goes well if an audience is on your side, because it shows I’m not so arrogant as to pretend it never happens, and because bad gigs and hecklers are two things that stop people doing stand up). I closed, for the first time in months, on my film music – ‘to give the illusion of climax and structure.’

It was fun. And encouraging that, with the support of the audience, I could do thirty entertaining minutes without straying into the territory of doing material. I hope Steve, who was by himself, makes good on his promise to come back with friends on the strength of what he saw, and in the knowledge that he’ll get something totally different if he does.

    Everything is Purple
    5-25 August (not 14 or 21) at 22.10
    Venue 63 – The Dragonfly, West Port
    PBH free fringe



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