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We couldn’t find any more cow puns to milk… so just prepare for an udderly entertaining August! 

13th May 2019

  • BBC Radio 4’s Fags, Mags and Bags written by and starring Sanjeev Kohli makes its Festival Fringe debut with live radio play.
  • BBC Arts Editor Will Gompertz brings an entertaining enlightening lesson through Double Art History
  • Circus bursts out of the Circus Hub and into McEwan Hall with one of the most technically ambitious circus shows to come to Underbelly yet - Backbone
  • Symphonic Ibizaand Junior Jungle Rave at Underbelly Central Hall head up a music strand which also stars Micky P Kerr and Tom GK.
  • Robots, climate change, health, social media and conspiracy theories just some of the topics explored through theatre.
  • Dance sensation the BalletBoyz makes its Edinburgh Fringe debut.
  • A fantastic line-up of established and new female comedians take Daisy by storm.
  • Will Adamsdale returns, Tim Vine makes a one-off appearance, Langston Kerman makes his debut and Fringe favourite Abandoman takes us on the Road to Coachella.
  • Tickets are on sale now on www.underbellyedinburgh.co.uk.

Today Underbelly announces the final 91 shows joining its Fringe programme this August. With a huge range of star names, challenging and intriguing topics and a host of great music this is set to be one of the most entertaining year’s yet beneath George Square’s udders and across Bristo Square, the Cowgate, Circus Hub and Central Hall.

 

Theatre Highlights

Award-winning Radio 4 comedy  Fags, Mags and Bags is finally going live! Experience NEAR YOUR ACTUAL FACE Ramesh’s shop logic, Dave’s Vera Drake fleece, Alok’s pointy shoes and Sanjay’s weaponised sarcasm (#weaponisedsarcasm) in live performances of this radio drama. The BBC link continues with its arts editor Will Gompertz returning to Fringe after 10 years to prove that not all contemporary art is bollocks in Double Art History. 

Award-winning theatre company SharkLegs uncovers the price people really pay for next-day delivery in Fulfilment. Join us and let Robox discover what you need, what you want and what you dream of. Then let Robox provide a solution. 

Do Our Best is a devastating comedy about how to harness your grief, find your pack and never giving up as Sephie attempts her Entertainers badge at Guides for the fourth time. From 2018's double Fringe-First winning Francesca Moody Productions (Angry Alan, Square Go, Fleabag), written and performed by fast rising Remy Beasley (Stella, Sky), directed by Fringe First Award Winner Hannah Banister.

Multi award-winning US playwright Jonathan Caren's razor-sharp dark comedy Four Woke Baes starring Scotland’s Gayle Rankin, star of Netflix hit Glow, follows four friends on a river-rafting stag party that's turned upside down when a mysterious woman kayaks ashore and groom-to-be, Dez, comes to question the very nature of love and monogamy. Part stand-up-set, part-kitchen-sink-drama, Pits will take you on a massive Geordie bender of a night out on the Toon. Outrageous, urgent, and disgracefully funny, Pitsis an unflinching look at the ties that bind our communities together and the divides tearing our society apart. 

Don’t Bother is a stand-up poetry show about dead dogs, chocolate and nostalgia from multi-award winning performance poet and alumnus of the Durham Revue, Bróccán Tyzack-Carlin. Solo gig-theatre HATCH digs under the skin of anti-heroine Jess, imprisoned for selling drugs on her lover’s behalf in explosive spoken word poetry, sensual moments of magical realism, a collection of original songs and fierce live electronic music. Winner of the Camden People’s Theatre Award and Oberon Books Best New Play Award (NSDF 2018). 

As the extremes of social media kick up an unsettling and unsavoury stink, Evening Standard one-to-watch writer Tatty Hennessy, National Youth Theatre Artistic Director Paul Roseby and Britain’s best young talent are kicking off in response in true interrogatory style to put Mark Zuckerberg and his social network colleagues ‘on trial’ in F. OFF.  

96% of all male rape cases go unreported. Ripped is Jack’s explosive story as he steps into the absurd world of modern masculinity, masks his trauma and reinvents himself as a 'real man'. Written by and starring Alex Gwyther (Most Promising New Playwright shortlist - Off West End Awards).

A strip club’s flashing neon sign is keeping Danny awake at night, and Julia’s Adderall addiction has only gotten worse since her dealer moved in, in Monsoon Season, a brutally demented romantic comedy starring Broadway’s Richard Thieriot (Clybourne Park) and Therese Plaehn (The Humans). Walrus in association with Theatre Royal Plymouth presents a new play by Sam Steiner, A Table Tennis Play. A long summer weekend, two strangers, and a full-size table tennis table. A new play about how everything and nothing changes as people bat a ball from the makers of Fringe hit debut show, Lemons Lemons Lemons Lemons Lemons.

Following The Bearpit, Kopfkino return to Edinburgh with The Grand Scheme Of Things, a deeply personal show about scapegoating and living through revolutionary times in which two friends rip their relationship apart in the name of self-protection.

Climate change is a hot topic this summer. In When the Birds Come hit writer Tallulah Brown returns to the Fringe following the blazing success of Songlinesin 2018, with a story of sibling meltdown and climate change.

It’s a conspiracy! Amelia Earhart has been missing for 82 years. Emmy thinks this is a cover-up and wants the truth. Caught between her humdrum life and her need for adventure, she intends to build, sail and fight her way to her hero in Woman! Pilot! Pirate? While one of the most famous conspiracies of the internet era is explored in Cicada 3301. When Cicada 3301 first appeared in January 2012, with a picture posted on reddit, it caught the eye of many and started what was to become one of the internet’s most enduring puzzles. This is a play about human desire for purpose, community and the search for order in chaos.In a new show from The Outbound Project, mass epidemic hysteria is charted from Ancient Egypt to its current theatre audience in M.E.H.

 

Comedy Highlights 

What do you call a cow with no legs…..? Ground Beef! What do you call a cow on crystal meth….? Beef jerky! Ahemmm, here’s a look at the newly announced comedyappearing at Underbelly this August. 

Tim Vine Presents: Plastic Elvis Live In Concert! In this special one-off event Plastic Elvis will thrill you with an evening of full throttle charisma, unstoppable rock'n'roll and jaw dropping excitement. With backing by the brilliant High Noon Band and a rare appearance from special guest Big Buddy Holly. Get your tickets for 7th August, an unforgettable night. 

He won the 2004 Perrier award but, let’s face it, he’s hardly kicked on has he? Will Adamsdale returns with Facetime, a show about failures, really (his, generally). Expect stories of staggering technical incompetence! And poor attempts to pass off his flaws as his generation’s fault! 

Looking for a full music festival in 60 minutes? Abandoman's got your back! In Road to Coachella Rob Broderick brings his innate ability to craft songs on the spot to the world of Coachella. Combining hip hop, pop, EDM and more, Rob will transport you to the world's greatest music festival – with some innovative, fresh video DJ action and without leaving George Square!

You never know what’ll change your life. The message in the bottle that bobbed up before you at the beach. That's what brought you here. Sold out four-years running, master storyteller and cult classic of the Fringe, Wil Greenway returns with a brand new show to whisk you away to some other place in The Ocean After All.

Discover your next favourite female comedian in Daisy! We’re proud to present a line-up of ladies that will have you in stitches! Names already announced include Flora Anderson, Robyn Perkins, Sasha Ellen and Saskia Preston. Joining them are Connie Wookey in Denied- a true story.'In February my cousin died in a plane crash. I flew to the funeral. My plane stopped working mid-flight. Good...' Award-winning music-comedy covering US visa immigration issues, men who wink at waitresses, and malfunctioning planes. And Rachel Creeger’s Hinayni! A new show from the award-winning comedian behind ‘It’s No Job For A Nice Jewish Girl’ and Winner of Best Comedy at the Greater Manchester Fringe 2017. 

American comedian Courtney Paurosomakes her Edinburgh Fringe debut this summer with Gutterplam - a character clown show (definitely), burlesque show (eventually), and feminist allegory (sure, probably) all rolled into one surreal and stupid, blindingly beautiful yet deceptively dark hour of ground-breaking comedy. And Julia Rorke’s Jeneane Morris is here to tell u some shit about lyf: buckle up. Strap in. Get over it. Bring the exact hour you were born. Prepare to be throttled. But also cuddled. 

Langston Kerman: The Loose Canon – known to many as Jared from HBO’s Insecure,talks through the unexpected revelations from living with a convicted sex offender, questioning how these discoveries might prepare him to be a better man in the world, a better lover and a better husband in his pending marriage. 

"Hello sweetie!" get ready for a new sense of comedy and performance, which together produce a raw and physically engaging show. Totally Plucked is where twisted circus tricks meet the absurd heart of the Fringe. Semi nudity and feathers combined with high energy circus makes Totally Plucked a fun, impressive show for adults only! 

Found Footage Festival’s Joe Pickett (The Onion) and Nick Prueher (Colbert Report) are back in Edinburgh for 10 nights only with an all-new guided tour through their latest VHS finds, including the 1987 Miss Junior America Wisconsin pageant, a mysterious tape labelled "bonion sergery," and a fitness video called Jugglercise. Don’t miss this cult Fringe hit! 

Life is a cream puff of a Cabaretthis Fringe! From the maker of the award-winning Comfort Food Cabaret, Australia's singing cook turns up the heat in her award-winning musical food cabaret, Just Desserts. Featuring a live rock-pop powered soundtrack, this sensual chanteuse explores empowerment, social pressure, our obsession with perfection and desire through song, sex and sugar. Includes Dessert! A delicious UK Debut.

 

Music highlights

At Underbelly Central Hall top quality tunes are the order of the day. Symphonic Ibiza returns after a storming Edinburgh’s Hogmanay appearance. Fusing a thrilling live 20-piece orchestra with high tempo beats from renowned club DJ Andy Joyceand musical genius Steve Etherington, whose credentials include residencies at Ibiza super-clubs Pacha, Amnesia, Eden and Café Mambo, this party is like no other, creating an entirely new club experience.

For the mini, daytime clubbers, at Junior Jungle Rave you can expect only the finest cuts of Jungle and Drum & Bass, classics, remixes and banging' new drops, and all expertly mixed live by Nick Terrific. MC Rocky Patch will lead the charge making sure all partygoers are jumpin' and skankin'.

Elsewhere music finds its way into shows across comedy and theatre as well as some terrific musicals. Last year the Leeds funny man, Micky P Kerr, made the finals of Britain’s Got Talent, wowing the judges with his down to earth style and hysterical songs. This year he tackles the age-old problem of ageism, in this hilarious rags to more rags tale of becoming a ‘proper’ musician, Kerr in the Community. Meanwhile Diego (Duane Forrest) traces the ups and downs of a relationship as he journeys from a devastating breakup to meeting the captivating Mariela (Sandra Aguilar) in Climb, a live album brought to life with original music blending bossa nova, jazz, reggae, and soul.

Disney villain. Octo-woman. Plus size icon. But who is the woman behind the tentacles? From the multi-awardwinning Fat Rascal Theatre, creators of sell-out hit musicals Buzzand Vulvarine, comes The Untold Story of Ursula the Sea Witch - a musical parody.

“There’s no humour in having so many tumours”... Tom GK’s hearing is going out with a bang! In Tom GK’s Hearing Loss: The Musical former Daily Telegraph music critic and critically-acclaimed storyteller combines laughter, song and genetic disease in this vaudevillian biography. 

Ahoy! Join John Silverman and the crew of The Maiden’s Ruin on their quest for pirate booty in a bawdy tale of love, betrayal, murder, and incest in Piramania! The Swashbuckling Pirate Musical! This 5-star adult musical-comedy returns to Edinburgh after it's 2010 maiden voyage, bawdier, funnier, boozier, and pirate..ier than ever before. 

And from the gang behind SIX and Hot Gay Time Machine, Cambridge University Musical Theatre Society bring a new musical Unexpected Item in the Bagging Area. In this fresh comedy-musical grab your bag-for-life, stick your pound-shaped keyrings into the trolley, and step inside The Supermarket™© for a freshly-baked musical treat.  

 

Circus Highlights

There’s more Circus than ever at Underbelly this summer. At McEwan Hall a high-octane spree of physical virtuosity tests the limits of strength: physical, emotional, individual and collective in Backbone by international masters of contemporary circus, Gravity & Other Myths. Staged with a deceptively DIY aesthetic and dispensing of trickery and distraction, this is circus that goes straight for the jugular and leaves no viewer unmoved. Sexy, sincere, raw yet disciplined.

In Heroes Edinburgh’s Hogmanay favourite, Scotland’s aerial dance company All or Nothing brings its playful new aerial show and Room 2 Manoeuvre delves into the world of super heroes and beyond! In their quirky circus universe, two performers (and their miniature sidekicks) explore what it means to be a hero. 

 

Dance highlights

The award-winning all-male company BalletBoyz makes an explosive Edinburgh Fringe debut with Them/Us. Created collaboratively by the company dancers, Then explores the individuality that resides within each dancer and the versatility of movement which BalletBoyz are renowned for. In Us, Tony and Olivier Award-winning choreographer Christopher Wheeldon examines human connections, culminating in the tender duet which premiered in 2017 to public acclaim. 

Before you tell them it’s ‘pasture bedtime’ here are some highlights for the calves this August. 

For almost 50 years, Mr. Men and Little Miss have brought joy to millions of children all over the world through self-expression, colour, simplicity and humour. Join the favourite Mr. Men and Little Miss characters as they leap off the page and onto the stage in the world premiere of this beautifully crafted and hilarious live stage show featuring Mr. Bump, Little Miss Splendid, Mr. Tickle, Little Miss Inventor and many more.

Hop aboard and let the Intrepid Fools take you on an irreverently epic adventure far across the fjords with music, mayhem and monsters galore in Viking! Ragnarr Ragnarson is a Skald – a teller of stories, keeper of history and composer of poems. Or rather, he will be. Now he’s just a scrawny little limpet on the edge of greatness. 

And…

Tortoise Think Ins believes the world deserves a slower, wiser news. Join them for a live news conference. Take your seat at the table alongside the editors. Become a member of the newsroom. It’s a forum for civilised disagreement and they want to hear what you think.

Gay and straight worlds collide, as unlikely friends James Barr (Gay) and Dan Hudson (NonGay) plus special guests bring their award winning comedy podcastto Edinburgh! Expect audience interaction, a hilarious parody of ‘QueerEye’ as Dan lends his hetero gaze to the Gay community in ‘NonGay-Eye’ and a laugh out loud look at issues affecting Gay and NonGay people in an absurdly simple but hilarious premise; what divides us makes us laugh harder. 

Kill Tony - The #1 Live Weekly Podcast in the World – comes to Edinburgh! Tony Hinchcliffe hosts his wildly popular podcast with his co-host Brian Redban and the Kill Tony Band. Rising young up and coming comics or failing older comics get their name pulled out of a bucket, do one minute of material each, and then Tony and his weekly friends/guests give feedback, extra material, and ask questions to the young performers always leading to a hilarious debacle. Past guests include Joe Rogan, Sarah Silverman, Doug Benson, Jeff Ross, and Russell Peters. 

 

Tickets are on sale now on www.underbellyedinburgh.co.uk

 

Marina Dixon, Head of Programming for Underbelly said: “Across comedy and theatre we are excited to be presenting big names like Sanjeev Kohli, Gayle Rankin and Langston Kerman alongside those getting their foot on the ladder to a big career. There’s a strong array of female comedians and voices in the programme some of them already award winning and others sharing their first hour of material with us. 

“The premiere of Mr Men and Little Miss joins Basil Brush in a cracking children’s programme and Junior Jungle Rave at our new venue Central Hall is sure to be a hit alongside its big sibling Symphonic Ibiza. 

“Something for everyone in a programme which will have Underbelly packed with laughter, fun, breath-taking stunts, thought provoking theatre and inspiring personal stories.”

Posted by Annie Wheeler