Pleasance is known for its amazing comedy and this year’s programme is like no other. Sindhu Vee, 2018 Edinburgh Comedy Awards Best Newcomer nominee, known from Live At The Apollo, Mock The Week and, more recently, Sex Education, brings a brand new hour of stand-up in Alphabet. World-famous Simon Amstell presents a work-in-progress with his generation-defining comedy. And newcomer Chloe Petts, who started out in Pleasance’s Comedy Reserve, deep dives into the world of masculinity, both toxic and otherwise.
Reginald D Hunter also brings a work-in-progress to Pleasance this year – expect relentless hard-hitting comedic pressure. Festival favourite Jess Robinson returns with a brand-new show with her incredible live band, original musical comedy and dazzling vocal stylings. The big names just keep on coming: Edinburgh Comedy Award Best Show nominee 2019, Ivo Graham, finds life coming at him ever faster so he’s trying to respond ever funnier. And Fin Taylor, as seen on Live At The Apollo, finds there’s comedy about speaking the truth to those in power but what happens when no one agrees on what’s true or who’s in power? Marcus Brigstocke is back at his hilarious, satirical best in Thread – grab this thread and pull it, if it all falls apart we’ll blame it on the French.
At 40, sell-out Fringe star Mark Watson is halfway through his life, if he’s lucky. That life is in the best shape in living memory…but one huge problem remains! International microstar Sean McLoughlin (Chortle Award nominee) returns to Edinburgh with his hugely accomplished stand up in Gold Rush. Edinburgh Comedy Awards Best Newcomer nominee, Sarah Keyworth is back with her lil’ keys and big jokes. As seen and heard on 8 Out Of 10 Cats, The News Quiz and The Guilty Feminist Podcast, Catherine Bohart returns to take the Fringe by storm in This Isn’t For You. Meanwhile, Angela Barnes (Mock The Week, Live At The Apollo and The News Quiz) is trying to live her best life, and it’s really bloody hard. In 2010, the world was in a sorry state and everything is still going downhill; Stephen K Amos asks us to forget the divisions and immerse ourselves in an hour of laughter.
Check out the most exciting comedy newcomers at Pleasance; join rising star Jamie D’Souza as he performs his highly anticipated debut show about his first school crush. 2019 BBC New Comedy Page Award finalist and Pleasance Reserve alumnus, Josh Jones presents a debut hour from an atypical northern bloke. Party with carnage-wielding, mayhem-manifesting, disco ball, Katie Pritchard, winner of the Musical Comedy Awards, in her brand-new Musical Comedy show.
Returning to Pleasance this year are Pleasance Reserve alumni Tom Lucy who will tackle his family, his upbringing, his genitals, laser quest and yellow tracksuits; George Lewis who’s determined to show that the boring Google suggestions for his name are wrong; and multi-award-winning comedian and true king of the northern realm, Alasdair Beckett-King who plans to unravel life’s shallowest mysteries. Fresh from supporting Michael McIntyre and Romesh Ranganathan, Jake Lambert (Comedy Central) returns with his new show. The Improvised Doctor Who Parody is back to take us on an adventure in space and time, created from audience suggestions – it also features a live radiophonic workshop.
So many comedians, so little time, so head along to Fast Fringe and see twelve top comedy and variety acts perform ridiculously short sets in one furiously fast-paced showcase. The global smash hit podcast, No Such Thing as a Fish, returns to the Fringe for three nights only of live podcast recordings where the writers behind QI present a show bursting with facts, jokes, and much much more. Or join Edinburgh Comedy Award 2019 Best Newcomer nominees, Crybabies, as they present their latest narrative-driven sketch adventure.
Turning to the theatre programme, Who Here’s Lost? sees a melancholy artist and a mute architect take a road trip of the soul as Pleasance legend Ben Moor returns with a new storytelling piece that is hilarious, cryptic, beautiful and wise. In comic play Adrian Bliss: How To Not Go Extinct, a budding social media star jumps on the climate change bandwagon, inviting you to the launch of his book in a thinly veiled plot to get famous fast. After total sell out runs of his last two works, David William Bryan now stages Not Quite Midnight Radio, a brand-new psychological drama with a twist.
The much-loved, regular Fringe sell-out Big Bite-Size Breakfast Show is back for the company’s 15th anniversary year with three delicious daily rotating ‘menus’ of 10-15 minute comedies, eccentricity and mini-drama with fresh coffee, tea, croissants and strawberries. Circus spectacular Cirque Berserk! are also returning with over 30 acrobats, aerialists, dancers, drummers and daredevil stuntmen including the hair-raising Globe of Death. And, for two shows only, join Olivier Award-winning improvisers as they take your kids’ amazing ideas and transform them on the spot into interactive musical adventures in The Showstoppers’ Kids Show.
With more shows to be announced over the coming months there will be comedy, theatre, circus, magic, dance, kids’ shows and much more, alongside support for some of the most innovative newcomers through artist development strand Pleasance Futures.