Edinburgh Fringe 2014: 25 must-see shows

Ennio Marchetto Pic: Comp

Ennio Marchetto Pic: Comp

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Evening News entertainment editor Liam Rudden shares his top picks for this year’s Fringe

CELEBRITY

Paxo

Broadcaster, author and Spitting Image puppet Jeremy Paxman probes pogonophobia, underpants and the human condition. With an opportunity to quiz the grand inquisitor.

Pleasance Courtyard, 18-25 August, 5.20pm

Ian Lavender: Don’t Tell Him, Pike

Dad’s Army’s ‘Stupid Boy’ relives his glory years in the long-running sitcom accompanied by clips and questions from the audience.

The Assembly Rooms, 30 July-24 August, 4pm

Elaine C Smith

Rab C Nesbitt’s Mary Doll returns to the Fringe with her massively successful one woman show - a mix of stand-up, storytelling and music.

The Assembly Rooms, 1-10 August, 6pm

Jim Davidson: No Further Action

Fresh from winning Big Brother, comedy king Jim Davidson tells the story of his arrest and the nightmare 12 months that followed.

Assembly Hall,​ 1-25 August, 9.15pm

Dame Diana Rigg: No Turn Unstoned

The Avengers’ Mrs Peel reflects on the worst theatrical reviews in history and celebrates the actors who survive them. Followed by a Q&A session.

Assembly Checkpoint, 14-23 August, 1.20pm

THEATRE

...and This is My Friend Mr Laurel

Hi De Hi favourite Jeffrey Holland stars in this one-man show. Set in the bedroom of a sick Oliver Hardy, Stan Laurel visits his dying friend.

Pleasance Courtyard, 30 July-25 August, 12.40pm

The Trial of Jane Fonda

Oscar-nominated, Golden Globe winner, Anne Archer - you’ll know her from Fatal Attraction - stars as Jane Fonda in this gripping new piece of theatre.

The Assembly Rooms, 30 July-24 August, 4.05pm

Frankenstein: UnBolted

Not heard of them? Take a chance on the brilliant and hilarious Last Chance Saloon company as they resurrect Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. Follow Victor Frankenstein as he attempts to create the perfect human being.

Just the Tonic at The Caves, 30 July-24 August, 7.25pm

Keeping Up with the Joans

Fringe First winning Philip Meeks latest bittersweet comedy brings together Susan Penhaligon (Bouquet of Barbed Wire), Doctor Who’s Katy Manning and Brunton panto favourite Arron Usher. Not to be missed.

Pleasance Courtyard, 30 July-24 August, 2.30pm

Julie Burchill: Absolute Cult

Hollyoaks’ DI Sam Lomax and Fringe regular Lizzie Roper returns to star in the uproarious sequel to 2004 smash Julie Burchill is Away.

Gilded Balloon, 30 July-25 August, 1.45pm

COMEDY

Lee Evans

See it first. Join record-breaking Lee Evans for two very special shows in which he will be trying out brand new material for his forthcoming Monsters arena tour.

Edinburgh Playhouse, 3-4 August, 7.30pm

Barbara Nice: Squirrel Proof

Phoenix Nights’ Holy Mary, Janice Connolly, returns to the festival with a shrewd, sharp and current new show exploring the on-going battle we have with keeping nature at bay in the name of civilisation.

The Assembly Rooms, 30 July-24 August, 2.30pm

Tom Price: Not As Nice As He Looks

The Welsh Torchwood star returns to the Fringe after his 2011 sell-out run. Older, balder and louder than ever, he now has a beautiful son who even has the same huge head and big cuddly face. So how can Tom make sure he doesn’t become a bleak flinty git like him?

Pleasance Courtyard, 30 July-24 August, 9.30pm

Andrew Lawrence: Reasons to Kill Yourself

Stand-up comedy’s foremost creepy-faced ginger man, star of BBC1’s Live at the Apollo revels is awful the world. Dark comedy at its best.

The Assembly Rooms, 31 July-24 August, 8.45pm

Lucy Porter: Me Time

The diminutive funny lady brings her 10th solo show to the Fringe. Finding modern life a bit difficult? Maybe you were born in the wrong era. In this show Lucy tries to find her rightful place in history.

The Comedy Club, 31 July-10 August, 12.50pm

MUSICALS

Siddhartha, the Musical

Inspired by Herman Hesse’s novel, Siddhartha began as a rehabilitation programme in Milan’s Maximum Security Prison, and tells the story of Prince Siddhartha’s quest for enlightenment with a sizzling Italian and South Asian influenced pop-rock score.

The Assembly Rooms, 31 July-24 August, 6.10pm

The Addams Family

Join TV and movie favourites Gomez and Morticia, along with Uncle Fester, Wednesday, Pugsley, Grandma, Lurch and Thing in this musical celebration of Addams family values.

Assembly Hall, 31 July-25 August, 11am

Eurobeat: Almost Eurovision (Sarajevo)

Come to Sarajevo where they are hosting Eurovision. With hilarious songs and dance routines, this spoof of the famous song contest is arguably more fun than the real thing.

C venues, 2-9 August, 3.25pm

Saucy Jack and the Space Vixens

Set in a bar, buy a beer from Saucy Jack himself and kick back for an intergalactic disco extravaganza. Five star reviews greeted this musical first time around. Just don’t forget your glitter boots, they could save your life.

Just the Tonic at The Caves, 31 July-24 August, 11pm

Sinatra: Final Curtain

The sell-out show 2013 Fringe musical returns. Sinatra, now poorly in hospital, looks back on a lifetime of entertainment in stories and classic song in this acclaimed musical play.

theSpace @ Surgeons Hall, 1-23 August, 7.10pm

MUSIC/CABARET

Ennio Marchetto: The Living Paper Cartoon

The Olivier award-nominated Ennio Marchetto uses ingenious paper to create a whirlwind of popular icons. Be astounded as he morphs into Gaga, Obama, Bono, Beyonce and the Queen!

Pleasance Courtyard, 30 July-15 August, 10.30pm

Andy Bell: Is Torsten The Bareback Saint

Erasure legend Andy Bell makes his Fringe debut to co-incide with the release of his fourth solo album.

Assembly, George Square, 5-16 August, 6.30pm

Camille O’Sullivan: 10

Queen of the Fringe, the award-winning Camille celebrates ten years of sell-out Fringe shows - can it really be a decade since you first read about her in the Evening News?

The Assembly Rooms, 30 July-24 August, 9.45pm

Philharmonic of Wit

Hear the classics you know and love turned upside down in this wacky, witty, sexy show. Discover the greatest operatic and symphonic hits sound as if they had been composed today. Don’t miss.

Venue150@EICC, 31 July-24August, 6.30pm

Brazouka

Arlene Phillips directs 16 dazzling dancers take audiences on a breathtaking journey of intense passion, sizzling sensuality, pulsing music and explosive energy. Produced by Pamela Stephenson Connolly.

Assembly Hall, 31 July-25 August, 5.30pm