Edinburgh Festival Fringe: Rick Shapiro’s five Fringe moments

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Comedian Rick Shapiro shares some of his best - and worst - Fringe moments

1: What has been your worst moment on stage?

The time a girl jumped on stage stating “I did more heroin than Rick Shapiro.” She pushed me down… not one person helped. She showed up a year later and she was embarrassed.

2: Sum up a previous Edinburgh Fringe in 30 words.

Paul Provenza asked me on stage to repeat a monologue that I did naked on TV. I dropped my pants, did the monologue, the audience loved it.

3: What inspired you to come to the Fringe?

I never really heard of the Fringe. It sounded like something mothers go to with their friends – a bunch of wives enjoying crafts. But I bumped into someone at a club who said, “It’s big. When can I see your show ‘cause I can book you.” I just happened to be going to the tail end of an open mic night. I was getting a little bit of a name at the time so I was able to just jump on stage. The guy looked at his friend and said, “I’m sold, let’s book him.” When I got to Edinburgh, well, it was just inspiring.

4: What hardships did you have to endure to make it to the Fringe?

You are doing what you love, people are responding, you get to stay up late. There is no hardship.

5: What does the Edinburgh Fringe mean to you?

Truth is the word Fringe means nothing to me. Comedy is comedy. Drama is drama. Interwoven, interconnected. The word Fringe causes analysis; why are Fringe performers funnier and more daring? Mainstream should be called Fringe and Fringe should be called mainstream.. so much for labels.

Rick Shapiro: Rebirth, Assembly Rooms, George Square, until August 27, 6.10pm, £13-£14, 
www.edfringe.com