For the past six months I’ve been working on a new magic show to take to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. This has been a dream of mine for years and this August I finally made it come true. The day before the first show I was absolutely terrified. I was petrified that no one would turn up, the show would be a flop and I would have to return home saddled with a massive debt.
Oh how wrong I was.
Every single show, on every single day, filled every single seat. Over the twenty performances I did at the festival, around 1,500 people saw my show. The reviewers that came to see my show wrote wonderful things about it. Really wonderful things. Also, the audience reviews and feedback was just brilliant! You can read what some had to say about it on the EdFringe website here.
I have many thank you’s to say, firstly my huge gratitude to the PBH Free Fringe. PBH was set up 19 years ago and has been providing free, alternative comedy shows at the Edinburgh festival every year. It is one of the only companies at the Fringe that seeks to help performers earn money and not leave them crippled with debt for trying to bring a show to the worlds largest arts festival. Check out their programme of events. Every year they have the best free shows (as proven this year by hosting John Kearns, the winner of the Edinburgh Comedy Award).
Another HUGE thank you has to go out to my good friend Rhys Williamson. Rhys is a student, an aspiring writer and failed stand-up comedian. We met when we both studied at Leeds University and Rhys helped motivate me to take my own show to the Fringe (and perform stand-up comedy myself). Most importantly, Rhys was instrumental in helping the show take form. Although not a magician himself, Rhys helped bounce ideas around with me. Without Rhys’s input, so many of the jokes, tricks and lines wouldn’t be the way they were. Scripting, inventing tricks and rehearsing the show passed from being a drag to an absolute pleasure by having Rhys involved. He is currently in the process of publishing a children’s book, writing a screenplay, having a previous screenplay turned into a short film and writing a show for next years Edinburgh Festival. Watch this space, I expect at least one of these things might happen…
My show was at the Voodoo Rooms on West Register Street, two minutes walk from the train station. It is a beautiful venue with lovely staff and an incredible programme of shows. You really couldn’t ask for a better place to spend a month. I need to say a huge thank you to all the other performers and all the staff that were really helpful. I couldn’t have done it without you.
More gratitude is also owed to my friend Adam Simpson. He is a graphic and web designer from my home town. I’ve been amazed by his work for years but he truly astounded me when he did the design work for my show. He created the flyers and posters seen all over Edinburgh and also the t-shirts and badges that I gave away to those who really deserved them. You can check out Adam’s design portfolio here.
I also owe so much to everyone who leant me their home, bed, sofa or floorspace over the month and allowed me to live in Edinburgh rent free for the whole of August. Also another huge thanks to the people who volunteered to help manage the queue and help pack up the props at the end of the show. Particular thanks go to Maddy Lister who was the queen of organisation for the whole run.
I’m sure there are many more people to thank and it is certainly fatigue not malice if there is anyone I’ve missed out.
Finally the most important people to thank are the wonderful audience that turned up, came on stage and packed out the venue every single day. I couldn’t have done it at all without you.
Until next year Edinburgh, farewell.
To read more about the Edinburgh Fringe show, check out this post on my website.