The book was right: I have survived

THE last of my Edinburgh Fringe Survival Guide: Live! shows was this morning and very well it went too. Had a great conversation with Camille O’Sullivan, Vicky Featherstone and Ben Harrison, and even did a bit of artistic matchmaking.

I hope to add some thoughts about the whole experience shortly – if you’re impatient, you can read Philip Fisher’s four-star comments about it in the British Theatre Guide or, indeed, my own in the Guardian. Or you can cut-out the middle man and take a listen to the podcasts here

In the meantime here are my butlers whom I commissioned to serve Tattie Shaw’s fruit for the middle two shows:


We have lift off

THE first two instalments of The Edinburgh Fringe Survival Guide: Live! have gone swimmingly, with illuminating contributions on Thursday from Kath Mainland, Orla O’Loughlin, Aneke McCulloch and Tess Waters; and on Friday from Lyn Gardner, Brian Logan, Miriam Attwood and Finn Anderson.

The events have been sparking off lively post-show conversations and generating a bit of publicity, including this from Brian Ferguson in today’s Scotsman, in which he reports Mainland’s view that there are more reasons than money to appear on the Fringe, including “raising their profile within the industry, attracting media attention, seeing other world-class productions, and enjoying the opportunity to learn from other productions and performers”.

The series continues on Thursday. Here’s a reminder of the line-up:

Thursday 16 August
Essential advice about surviving week two and beyond from Maureen Beattie (pictured), star of Stellar Quines’ The List, Guy Masterson, Oliver Award-winning director of Morecambe, Ian Fox, author of How to Produce, Perform and Write an Edinburgh Fringe Comedy Show, and Teresa Burns, co-director of How It Ended Productions.
Friday 17 August
How to have the last laugh as a Fringe comedian with Phil Nichol, Edinburgh Comedy Award winner, Josie Long (pictured), Edinburgh Comedy Award best newcomer 2006, and Jessie Cave, comedian, actor and Harry Potter star.
Thursday 23 August
How to deal with disappointment and make the most of a hit with Hannah Eidinow (pictured), five-times Fringe First winning director, Judith Doherty, producer of the multi-award winning Grid Iron, Peter Michael Marino, writer of West End flop Desperately Seeking Susan, and Nicola Foxfield, assistant producer with Fringe first-timers Hecate Theatre.
Friday 24 August
Expert advice on developing your post-Fringe career from Vicky Featherstone (pictured), artistic director of the National Theatre of Scotland, Camille O’Sullivan, singing star of the Fringe and the Edinburgh International Festival, and Toby Gough, Herald Archangel-winning director.