Star rating: *****
Gilded Balloon – Nightclub
Edinburgh Fringe 2015
15:40pm 7th – 31st August 2015
Review date: Monday 10th August 2015
Tickets £12 Information & booking
Stephen K Amos has become as big a staple of the Edinburgh Fringe as the Gilded Balloon venue which this year celebrated its 30th anniversary at the fringe.
For the last few years in addition to hosting his own work in progress shows Stephen has hosted a daily talk show where he gets to interview fellow comedy and other fringe related colleagues.
This show got off to a barnstorming opening 10 minutes of stand up from Stephen. This achieved the effect of getting the audience relaxed and laughing out loudly and relaxed for an afternoon of comedy. For the next hour the audience were treated to a riotously fabulous show. We had jokes a plenty, innuendo, tension, song and dance and even a minor on stage getting in on the act.
First guest introduced was his co-host Rhys Nicholson. He was a strikingly dressed, very slim, young (25 years old and share’s a birthday with yours truly!) Australian man whom Stephen had seen on one of his tours down under.
Rhys had an interesting story to tell re his life there and was extremely funny and quick witted. He disclosed that he had a boyfriend of 3 years (not 3 years old that would be insane amongst many other things) but a three year long relationship, which, he told us, “ in gay years is like 20 years.” He also mentioned being an atheist. I’ve noticed the two seem to go hand in hand. This seems to be a bit of a trend amongst comedians at this year’s fringe – Daniel Sloss, Andrew Lawrence and (possibly) Reginald D Hunter, to name but three all have indicated that they are non-believers.
Hardeep Singh Kohli
Next guest was local comedian and broadcaster Hardeep Singh Kohli (HSK). He got off to a bit of a prickly start and I sensed a little comedic tension between him and Rhys as they exchanged bawdy sexual ripostes. I think HSK was making it clear to Rhys and others that they were in “his manor”!
There was a lovely respect between Stephen K Amos (SKA) and HSK who clearly go back a long way. I loved the way HSK acknowledged the hilarious opening to the chat show, which got a warm round of applause. I couldn’t agree more. It was easily the best opening to a show I’d seen all Fringe.
HSK talked about his life as a comedian, doing the fringe and his passion for cooking. In March 2015 he opened a new restaurant, V Deep, in Edinburgh specialising in curry and beer.
He missed the opportunity to plug it by not telling us its name or location. He was very generous too when asked to plug his Edinburgh show urged people to go and see new and upcoming talent instead! You can find out more regarding his restaurant and show via the links at the end of this review.
Next up was comedian Paul Foot. He mentioned that he and SKA started out in comedy at around the same time, 20 years ago. In an interesting anecdote, in responding to a question re how he coped with the pressure of winning all the Edinburgh Fringe awards going in 1997 (BBC New Stand Up Awards, Daily Telegraph Open Mic Award and Finalist in ‘So You Think You’re Funny’) he said it was tough to live up to that and commented that none other than Peter Kay was one of the runners up for one of these awards. Obviously Kay’s gone on to enjoy a stellar career in comedy so missing out on the award didn’t exactly ruin his career! However in his autobiography, published ten years afterwards he refers to the awards and feels they were fixed. Paul is tickled by the fact superstar Peter Kay seemed still irked so many years later.
Grace the Child
Next on was a very unusual sight. A 12 year old girl called Grace the Child. Well let me clarify that. Grace looked perfectly fine and normal. What was not was the fact she was a stand up comedian of … 6 years standing!!
She was the comedian of the family and classroom and just got into stand up from there. That’s remarkable. She came across as poised, polite and confident, if a little precocious (to be expected and that’s no bad thing). She delivered a funny, age appropriate, 5 minute set. I especially liked her marriage joke.
The funniest, saddest thing is that just as I’ve first heard of and seen her she is retiring from stand up this year. At age 12! She is not hanging up the microphone for good though as she will instead be attempting to forge a career in music. I look forward to hearing more from her in the future.
Last, but not least, we were treated to a comedy dance /physical performance from Aunty Donna. They look nothing like your typical Auntie, never mind a typical Donna, for they were in fact a 3 man Australian team. They dazzled with their energetic dancing and were well received. The x box shouty-angry routine drove me mad as it went on far too long, was OTT and as a non gamer left me bemused. I’m told that x box players would have got the joke.
All in all this was an extremely funny show thanks especially to Stephen K Amos and the great interaction between him and his funny guests Hardeep Singh Kohli and Rhys Nicholson. The guests of course are different each day but it’s well worth going along if you can. I’m confident you will be thoroughly entertained.
This show, with different guests is on most afternoons at the Gilded Balloon.
© Tiemo Talk of the Town
If you attended the show, or have a view regardless, we’d love to read your views. Feel free to post them on our blog.
Stephen K Amos appears in his own one man show ‘Work in Progress’ at The Stand 3&4 21.10pm daily to 30th August 2015.
- Edinburgh Fringe reviews 2015
- V Deep Restaurant – Edinburgh
- Top 10 Shows and restaurants – Edinburgh Fringe 2014
- Shows dates, times and prices from all the above guests can be found here
- Big Mouth Strikes Again – Hardeep Singh Kohli