Karen Koren: Shows must go on and on

Michele Gallagher will star in a new play by Rab C Nesbitt creator Ian Pattison. Picture: Contributed
Michele Gallagher will star in a new play by Rab C Nesbitt creator Ian Pattison. Picture: Contributed
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WE had our Fringe brochure launch for Assembly, Gilded Balloon, Pleasance and Underbelly in London yesterday and we will be launching the brochure again tomorrow in the Capital.

I was asked if I would speak at both launches as it is the Gilded Balloon’s 30th anniversary. Very daunting for me who does not like public speaking. However, since it is our 30th, I felt it had to be done and it all went very well.

It could have been a disaster since I’d been in Norway over the weekend opening our summer cottage and on Saturday night, the whole house fused. It was in darkness until we could get an electrician on Monday morning.

By that time I was well on my way to London, but being without electricity for 36 hours was an experience I would not care to repeat.

It’s amazing how we take electricity for granted.

The launch on the other hand was a grand affair on the South Bank, with around 500 guests. At a launch like this I can’t individually promote any of the shows, as there are so many. I worked out that between us, we have 654 shows, making it around 16,000 performances over the whole Festival Fringe - that’s quite a lot and all need to be promoted by their venue.

So it is hard to pick out any one that is going to be the hit or take the Fringe by storm.

One I will mention now, though, is a new play with Grant Stott, Andy Gray and Michele Gallagher (pictured), written by Rab C Nesbitt creator Ian Pattison.

They had their first reading of the play last week and they are all very excited to be performing this for the first time at the Gilded Balloon.

This play is the true story of Willie Donaldson, who brought Beyond the Fringe to Edinburgh in the 60s, and artist Sebastian Horsley. Both men squandered their fortunes and loved the same woman.

A dark comedy, any morals should be left at the door.