Thursday, 1 August 2013

In The Words of Meatloaf... **

My first show at the Fringe this year was character comedian Joe Fairbrother.

His show is set in a small performance area in the McEwan Hall, or "Daisy" as it's known by the Underbelly team.

Around 13 other people joined me for what was going to be a tricky show at the best of times as lunch time crowds are not known for their liveliness.

Fairbrother is certainly a very likeable chap, his appearance is fairly similar to Simon Amstell, he's slim with dark wavy hair and he has a similar smiley way about him.

My problem was that his character comedy just didn't work in a room so small with so few people. It doesn't have any punch lines, instead he relies in getting laughs from a kind of David Brent style of awkwardness which didn't bear much fruit on this occasion.

I always feel bad giving two stars to a comic that has potential to do better, but was unable to when I was there due to the general circumstances. I could see his act working in a friendlier space at a later time slot with a bigger audience, but at that time, with that crowd in that space, it didn't.

It's a massive, massive challenge for comedians to go from friendly comedy clubs at night time, to soulless temporary performance spaces during the day and still get the same level of response from the crowd. It's a particularly hard ask on day one of the Fringe.

He certainly isn't the first to have a bad opening day and he will no means be the last. But it was a bad opening day.

1 comment:

Chris said...

The second day was no better. His characters might have possibilities, but his material is not funny or even amusing.
Why ask the audience what their favourite textile is if you can't take it anywhere?
Waste of £6 and 50 minutes.