Sunday, 11 October 2009


Vancouver, September 17, 2009

As I've been implying, the Fringe tour is bloody exhausting … like frequently shattering … the show, the sell, the blagging, the line-ups, the late nights, the beer, the ups the downs the crash bang wallops.
So I never sit at the front at shows, because I'm much too tired to laugh and even the funniest show is going to leave me stony-faced … So I might be thinking that's really funny … that's hysterical … and that's really funny … but I'm rarely going to actually laugh out loud because I'm just plain knackered. In other words, I do not make good audience and usually sit near the back.
But even worse … is the shows I've loved where I was actively yawning when the performer looked at me … Which is undoubtedly bad form. Of course the stage lights mean that quite possibly none of them, except the first one below, saw me, but still, it's a crap solidarity.


Moving Along
my favourite show of the year
just plain brilliant
but yes I visibly yawned during the show
while Chris Craddock was looking at me
and as I was in the front row
where I never normally sit
I'm sure he saw me
embarrassing, certainly

Jimmy Hogg - Like a Virgin
funniest show of the year
but I have a decent excuse for yawning while Jimmy was looking at me
I was exhausted from all the laughing
yet, ahem, sorry

fortunately me and Tamara Ober hadn't properly met when I yawned during it so she didn't know who I was
but still, sorry
and it wasn't during the gorgeous butterfly bit

Rob's an old mate of mine, we did Edinburgh together for years, and I love to take the piss out of him
though it is of course too easy
but I'm still cringing about yawning during his second-ever performance of the blockrocking Fruitcake
I strongly doubt he could see me with all the lights, but still, it's the lack of thought that counts
Sorry guv.

Cabaret Terrarium
It felt suitably abstract to be yawning instead of laughing during the this offthewall deadpan hoot of a show by the New York duo Harrington and Kauffman. I also stroked a wooden frog with a stick instead of laughing but, in this show, this practice is normal and even encouraged.
Whatever, sorry.

Straight from That Side of Town
I loved this show
Which, as I said before, must be the best show in years to tour the Fringe to sod-all audience
what is happening?
but yes, I even yawned during the hysterically funny sex scene
whoops, sry

Murder, Hope
this brave show by the
elephants wish to be nimble
ratman and
Seattle firecracker
which one am I?
I managed to squeeze a good hearty yawn into

The Seven Lives of Louis Riel
Ryan bloody Gladstone hadn't even finished writing his script when I saw his show … and it was still bloody funny and everyone loved it … he even had to ask his lighting guy, Jonny P, for a few prompts and they loved him even more … If I did that I'd dry up and it would be horrible … 'cos I can't ad lib at all, and I mean at all … I have to rehearse an ad lib for two weeks and it still always goes wrong first time 'cos I forget where I am after I've done it … the show is programmed into my head in a particular order where people like Chris Gibbs and Ryan can muck about as much they like … Chris Gibbs likes to get as far away from his script as he possibly can, he actively wants cellphones to go off, kids to cry, people to come in late, people to fall off their chairs laughing, 'cos he can deal with anything … where me I have enough trouble dealing with the original plan … Bastards.
And yes, of course I yawned during it, it was the start of Winnipeg and I was already shattered

Even Inanimate Jungles have Clocks
Jolene Baillie's great dance show in Winnipeg.
I actually wrote half the text for this show, but still managed to yawn during some of my own words while she was looking in my direction. Which shows I'm not biased. I even liked the words. Well, they weren't actively bad.
She didn't know I was there, and I was a few rows back, but still, sorry.

Red Bastard
Sorry Eric, but I didn't actually yawn during your show … it was early in the tour, Montreal, and I was still good and fresh and well-slept and well-fed and unjaded, and fitting my trousers and not having to extra-notch my belt, and capable of a conversation about something other than myself, and even still able to read a book without large pictures and even read a book with text, and small text at that … But I thought I'd mention your show because it sits so nicely in this list of killer shows.
Only Red, Straight, Murder and Louis Riel are here in Vancouver.

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