So, week one. It begins....
This was the week of the press launch (the fringe didn't actually officially start until Friday!), so I got to tag along with a whole heap of journalists & watch lots of acts do tiny slots in super clean (and very newly opened) venues.
- Hot Dub Time Machine: opened the Underbelly press party and was everything I wanted it to be. It promises to be the Best Party Ever and I am practically counting down the minutes until I get to go!
- Abandoman: was very, very funny, in an improv rap sort of way.
- Drum Struck: Assembly Festival opened their gala show by giving us drums (what a joy!), as the whole audience gets to drum along to this show. I reckon if I ever get bored of science, I've found my other calling.
- Pajama Men: I HEART THEM, and would quite like to be their pal. I can't believe you haven't bought tickets yet.
- Puppet Up!: I thought this had lots of potential to be super cheesy and boring, but it was very, very funny indeed. If slighty-sweary muppets doing improv sounds like your thing (or at least, not your idea of hell) then they look well worth a ticket!
- Michael Che: This is his first year on the fringe, & he's already standing out as one to watch.
- Late n Live: You HAVE to go. You just have to. It's on 1am - 5am, and it's ridiculous, and brilliant and a Fringe institution.
- Knee Deep: I find circus/physical theatre quite a strange thing to watch at a festival. I get exhausted clapping all the time (I know, what woe), and find the performers SO impressive that it then seems too easy, and I think I don't appreciate what they are doing. That makes no sense, does it? Anyway, I don't think I could last the whole show, but if amazing circus performance is your cup of tea, then say hi to Knee Deep.
- Wellington International Ukelele Orchestra: A nice combination of excellent mullets, enthusiastic ukelele strumming and New Zealanders.
- Fosters beer: There are so many better drinks out there, but I can't quite resist a warmish pint of watery Fosters if I'm at a fringe venue. It just feels right.
- Akmal: Oh dear. When you are dying on stage, announcing to the audience "I'm really funny back home" is never ever going to win them over.
- Howard Read: To be fair, he only performed a snippet of his show at the Gilded Balloon launch, but it was a bit awkward and hardly anyone laughed. Hm.
- Saturday afternoon: After Late n Live finished at 5am on Saturday morning, I ended up going to a very early morning party & then had to navigate my way home through happy, cheery, awake festival crowds a few hours later. Perhaps not my finest moment, but late nights (that turn into early mornings) are all part of August's rugged charm.
Now onto week two! Wish me luck...