Thursday, August 3, 2006

Edinburgh Festival 2006 - THIS WEEK’S TOP 20

We’re going to all sorts of shows, all day, every day, to select the best stuff for you. After much debate, this is our Top 20 for the week – across the board – in alphabetical order (first name first, folks).

Andrew Maxwell
He may be slight, but his joke book is fatter than your Auntie Jean. Maxwell’s insights give him enough material for two shows this year.

Andrew Weatherall
Celebrating We are . . . Electric’s first birthday in style with the legendary techno turntablist.

Black Watch
Greg Burke’s reflections on the experience of Blackwatch soldiers at Camp Dogwood in Iraq.

Doug Stanhope
Set to blaze a presidential trail of controversy all across Edinburgh, this embattled comic should be upsetting the tabloids round about now.

Dylan Moran
More fine fettered Irishmen; this time it’s a case of fast mouth rather than fast feet from Edinburgh’s funniest adopted son. Wry, raw. and always hilarious.

Finer Noble Gases
Adam Wrapp’s dark existential farce about the last days of drug addled rock musicians.

The Goodies
Taken out and dusted down from the comedy closet at the BBC and reminding us why gloriously silly, surreal humour ages very well.

The Gruffalo and Friends
The queen of the nursery bookshelf, Julia Donaldson, acts out her own books with help of husband Malcolm, and copious audience participation.

(I Am) Nobody's Lunch
New York's acclaimed Civilians present alternative cabaret based on verbatim conversations about the war in Iraq.

Kurt Wagner was among those who inspired the whole notion of and continues to amaze with this year’s Damaged.

Martha Wainwright
An all too brief pair of dates for Montreal’s finest chanteuse who plys a winning trade in stark, visceral folk pop.

Onysos the Wild
Subway commuters meet the ghost of Dionysus and explore their dark repressions in this French visual feast.

Particularly in the Heartland
The TEAM raise the ghost of Robert Kennedy in a Kansas farmyard. Wild political satire follows.

Penny Spubb's
It’s about time someone brought those bedfellows – comedy and seafood – together. Wix and Crilly do it with style, in Prawn Free

Reginald D Hunter
The sharpest suit in the comedy pack will be in full stride after taking a year out from his mandatory Perrier nominations. The show’s called Pride and Prejudice and Niggas, folks.

Petrol Jesus Nightmare #5
Henry Adam’s story of two Israeli soldiers in a fire fight who receive some unwelcome civilian visitors.

Robert Mapplethorpe
Visual Art
Creator of some truly iconic photographs of everything from lilies to penises. New York’s rebel with a lens enjoys a major retrospective.

Dublin’s James Devine is putting tap dancing back on the map not just as an art form but as a sport with his record breaking footwork.

Wil Hodgson
Former wrestler and lover of Care Bears completes his unofficial trilogy about life in Chippenham. Comedy rendered black (and pink).

ZooNation: Into The Hoods
Who’d have thought injecting the work of Stephen Sondheim’s Into the Woods with a supply of hip hop stylings would be such a good idea?