Today's full programme, more choices & comment

9:30am to 9:55am
Story Corner Otherplace Productions Ltd

A trip to Story Corner is the perfect way start to your Fringe day. Are you sitting comfortably? Then we'll begin. Stories or book readings from guest readers and performers every day to delight, excite and entertain. Babies, toddlers and well-behaved grown-ups welcome.

11:00am to 5:00pm
Good Grief ...... Living with Loss The Martlets Hospice

'Good Grief... Living with Loss' is a supportive drop-in event for anyone interested in or effected by bereavement and loss. The event is part of Dying Matters Week 2018 and offers an opportunity to learn about the work of the Martlets Hospice, as well as other local and national providers of bereavement care and support.

There will be a mix of activities, information stalls and other opportunities including 'Soulful Singing in Grief' a free workshop which will run between 13:30 - 16:00.

12:30pm to 1:30pm
Wan In Wan Oot Mama Koogs

3 stars One in, one out: it's a rule that works for busy nightclubs, not generally for life. But this heartwarming two-hander tackles both ends of life's journey, as central character Leanne says goodbye to her ageing grandmother and sees the birth of her own longed-for baby, too. It's a gently humorous and very watchable family story, with a few stand-out emotional scenes. Read the full review.

Miss Mckay is with child, having been artificially inseminated by the sperm of her wife's best pal, and she's very worried about the size of her baby’s head.

Miss Mckay's wife wishes there were no such thing as bloody Dr. Google.

Mrs Mckay Senior is "On Her Wey Oot". She is telling death to "F**k Off". She is telling the nurses to "F**k Off", and she is having a wee laugh at the expense of the "wumman in the bed next to her".

A play about the extraordinariness of ordinary family history, memories, and what happens to families when those we love come into our lives, and when they leave.

2:00pm to 3:30pm
A Brighton Story: The Original City Tour Brighton City Walks

Brighton's number one, award-winning traditional city walking tour.

Perfect for visitors and residents alike.

90 minutes of fascinating facts about this incredible cosmopolitan city. Discover royal romance, secret tunnels, fishermen’s cottages and more.

Winner: TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence 2016, 2017.

2:30pm to 3:30pm
P Soup-Stained Arts

Imagine if every side of the pillow was the cold side. Take a step out of your own reality and into the clogs of someone who believes the glass isn't just half-full, but overflowing.

A solo-performance of physical and verbal story-telling, presenting a week in the life of the lovable lunatic we walk past on the street; briefly delving into the inner-workings of this familiar stranger.

3:00pm to 4:00pm
Joe Bains: Curried Mustard Joe Bains

Growing up in the deepest darkest parts of India and then being thrown into the west with no language, culture, personality, looks, or even a clue.

3:00pm to 4:00pm
Sing for Better Health! Sing For Better Health

Come and discover the joy of singing together with the Brighton & Hove 'Sing For Better Health!' groups! All welcome, no need for any singing ability, just join in! We will combine easy to learn breathing, voice and posture exercises, and sing songs together. Our aim is to improve health and well-being and have fun!

This project is supported by a Brighton Lions bursary.

4:20pm to 5:10pm
All Work, No Play Sweet Productions

3 stars All Work No Play is visibly a work in progress: it runs for just 30 minutes, is a little light on storyline, and could certainly do with tightening here and there. But it's an entertaining, diverting way to spend half an hour, and a promising Fringe debut for solo performer Alexander Grieve. Drawing on elements of clowning with a dash of physical theatre, Grieve evokes a monotonous office and a burgeoning romance – and throws in some witty meta-theatrics too. Read the full review.

A new piece of devised work making its debut at this year’s Brighton Fringe.

We all have to work. If you are really lucky, you will love your job. Well, good for you. But if you don’t, you will more than likely slog through the work day, chained to your desk cubicle, having the life sucked out of you as you toil away the hours whilst wishing for something more.

Orc longs for a better life outside the shackles of mediocrity, but there’s a voice that keeps holding him back.

However, Orc is on the clock, and he doesn’t have long until his time is up.

4:20pm to 5:10pm
Maria Shehata - Pretty Little (Work In Progress) Maria Shehata

Egyptian-American comedian Maria Shehata follows up her debut show 'Wisdomless' with stand up and storytelling about her life in London and what happened after she whimsically moved from LA. Winner of Best Comedian at the Hollywood Festival of New Cinema and Best Comedy at the Miami Web Fest. Maria was voted one of the 5 best new acts of the 2017 Edinburgh Fringe by The 99 Club.

“Shehata is warm and witty and lights up the whole room.” **** (Simply Stage)

“Uniquely open and honest... a performer to watch out for.” **** (Broadway World)

4:30pm to 6:00pm
Aquarium History Tour: Sea Life Brighton Jackie Marsh-Hobbs

Exclusive after hours tours of Brighton's aquarium! A unique opportunity to go off the public route to learn about the remarkable history of the world's oldest operating aquarium. Illustrated talk, followed by a tour of the grade II listed building, going behind the impressive Gothic-style Victorian arcade. There are stairs on tour and the tickets includes entry to Sea Life Brighton.

4:45pm to 5:40pm
Tales BAIT

This is a show about the stories which make us. A punk feminist quest to explode the tales which trap us. It’s about sex and love and power and choosing. About knowing where and when you begin because you choose to begin there. It’s about the girls we were and the women we will become.

5:00pm to 7:00pm
Circus Vegas The European Entertainment Corporation Ltd

A first for Brighton and a first for the Fringe
Never before seen in a circus big top, all the traditional elements but with added thrills, glamour and spectacle that you would expect when you think of Vegas.
The lions and tigers may be gone but they have been replaced with human daring, skill and incredible excitement.
A show of tension and an edge of your seat suspense, see the high wire performers, with no safety devices whatsoever, the amazing stunts of the sky wheel duo.
The lady who changes attire in the blink of an eye and the glamour of the Vegas dancers.
A show for everyone with that special American showbiz glitz

5:05pm to 6:15pm
Hymns for Robots Noctium

4 stars Synthesised music is so commonplace these days, it's hard to imagine how wondrous – miraculous – it must at first have seemed. What was it like to experience a new sound, found nowhere in nature, which no living creature had ever heard before? Hymns for Robots, a loose biography of famous musician Delia Derbyshire, successfully captures that sense of awe and magic… and delivers plenty of humour too, in a quirky, offbeat and stylish production. Read the full review.

No Fringe schedule would be complete without at least one show that’s ever so slightly out-there. So may I present Hymns For Robots: a loose biography of electronic composer Delia Derbyshire (most famous for her work on the Doctor Who theme). Featuring on-stage oscilloscopes, tin cans as telephones, and an actor painted to look like she's on black-and-white TV, it's a stylised show but also an informative one – which successfully captures the sense of wonder at the birth of a new artistic form. It's already picked up four stars from us here in Brighton.

In a small house loft, packed in hundreds of cereal boxes, lies the lifetime work of Delia Derbyshire - the unsung genius behind the Doctor Who theme tune and trailblazer of electronic music. Join Noctium as they explore this unique tale of the mother of modern music. Using strange sounds and weird wobbulations, Noctium brings you a sonic experience your ears won’t believe.

'Hymns for Robots' mixes Noctium’s unique heightened performance style of drama, comedy and expressionism with use of analogue and digital music to bring you an extraordinary life that was almost forgotten.

5:40pm to 6:30pm
The Invention of Lesbianism Cerys Bradley

A one-hour solo show about the history of LGBTQ+ language, written and performed by Cerys Bradley. It is a frank and funny history of lesbianism through the ages, looking at the evolution of language and how it has been weaponised, both by and against, the community.

Cerys Bradley is a part-time comedian and full-time gay, who uses stand-up comedy to talk about the LGBTQ+ community and its incredible history. They have performed at the Edinburgh Fringe, the Green Man Festival, and with Dr Jiggs Bowson and her Charming Science Friends.

5:40pm to 6:35pm
Paul Savage: Performative Wokeness Paul Savage

Paul Savage spent last year trying to be better. In response, his girlfriend cheated on him with his flatmate. What's the point of doing good if no one notices?

The award-winning comedian (Top 10 Jokes of Edinburgh Fringe 2017: The Guardian, Daily Mirror, Shortlist, Esquire, The Week) explores it all with jokes.

6:00pm to 7:00pm
Waiting for Gandalf Mankind

Returning to Brighton after a 4*-rated run in 2016, now with an eye-catching name listed as director, this dark-as-hell one-man play makes uncomfortable but rewarding viewing. Telling the life story of an obsessive and socially-awkward Lord Of The Rings fan, the script slowly turns from gentle humour to something far more disturbing, as the reasons for the man’s introspection are gradually revealed. Of course, I won't give away that twist – but the fact it's directed by Patrick Sandford, hugely acclaimed for his own show Groomed, is quite a big clue.

Meet Kevin Brook, self-confessed fanatic of all things 'Lord of the Rings'. On the eve before 'Gandalf' signs the official movie companion to 'The Two Towers', he sits outside Fenwicks, waiting. He talks about his life-long devotion, friends who don't understand him, family who never had time for him. But what's the real reason for his obsession with Tolkein? Why must he take his mind away from the harsh realities of life? An uncomfortable truth is about to be revealed.

“Dark-as-hell” (Fringe Guru)

***** (Albie Media)

**** (Broadway Baby)

6:00pm to 7:00pm
Simon Jablonski: Love Laughing Horse Free Festival

An extremely funny yet entirely unerotic journey that begins in a public toilet.

6:00pm to 7:15pm
About A Revolution Windmill Young Actors

Russia 1917: What does it take to make a revolution? A century after the October Revolution, could it happen here? Abi is living on the streets, her child taken from her. Can she spark a revolt to end decades of injustice, or is she just dreaming? A dynamic physical ensemble explodes onto the stage with political passion, rigorously questioning the emotions, ideas and anger that can fuel a popular revolt. Like! Angry face! Me too! Take to the streets!

Inspired by revolutionary art, historical speeches and the voices of young people today. Where is the spirit of revolution?

WINNER Fringe Review Outstanding Theatre Award, Brighton Fringe 2017

6:00pm to 6:50pm
Brawn Honest Man Theatre

A portal into the world of a young man named Ryan: a world consumed by image and obsession, where self-worth is measured in muscle mass and where self-improvement becomes self-destruction. A world that is spiralling out of control...

"A captivating and thought-provoking piece of theatre" ***** (Broadway Baby)
"Wollaton’s performance packs a punch" ***** (Reviews Hub)

6:00pm to 7:15pm
A Terrible Beauty ElAl Productions

Alan Felton and Tim Roycroft, in song, poetry and drama, present an entertainment depicting the Irish rebellions and famines from the Vikings to 1937. The performance also covers the part that the women of Ireland played in these events.

This is an update on the entertainment that Tim and Alan performed six years ago titled 'The Wind That Shook the Barley'.

6:15pm to 7:15pm
Trishelle: Out of Order Katie O'Brien

'Out of Order' is a show about addiction, abstinence and being an “addict”. A provocative, playful and funny story about drugs and being 20 years “clean” told by Katie and her very drunk friend, Trishelle. Together they explore why we love to get high, addictions and the identity of being “clean”. Is she really clean? Isn't everyone addicted to something? Is abstinence important? #SoberDrunk

"Character comedy at its very best – brave, committed, brilliantly performed and completely hilarious." ***** (To Do List)

"Side-splittingly funny... tantamount to a work of genius. " ***** (Everything Theatre)

6:15pm to 7:15pm
Aside Effect Laughing Horse Free Festival

A stand-up comedy show about a man (Winter Foenander) who finds himself in a perpetual state of madness. Follow his path of silliness as he attempts to retrace his steps back to humanity.

"Pace, energy, delivery... a machine gun of improvisation blended exquisitely with well honed material” (Luton Comedy Club)

6:15pm to 7:15pm
The O.S. Map Fan Club Helen Wood

4 stars I love to look at Ordnance Survey maps: the iconic plans of the British countryside, which have served as faithful guides to generations of walkers. It's a form of geekdom I'm proud to admit to, and the nicest thing about this warm-and-fuzzy show was that it proved I'm not the only one. On the night I attended, the Dukebox was full of navigators of all ages – united by our readiness to laugh at jokes involving contours, and cheer at a shelf stacked with Landranger sheets. Read the full review.

Join Ordnance Survey enthusiast, Helen Wood, for a humorous exploration of the much-loved, fold-out, paper map. Take a fascinating, laughter-filled, virtual ramble with Explorer map 168, and celebrate the simple beauty of Britain’s inspiring national treasure. O.S. fanatics, O.S. curious and O.S sceptics are all welcome at the O.S. Map Fan Club.

Edinburgh Fringe sell-out in 2017.

"Warm and engaging ... fun and touching." **** (West End Wilma)

"Joyful, friendly show steeped in ‘Great British Bake Off’ values" (ThreeWeeks)

6:15pm to 7:05pm
La Niña Barro Fronteiras Theatre Lab

A devised piece based on a collection of poems by Spanish writer Marta Massé, about a girl made of clay. In this intimate, meditative, and lyrical experience, the audience is invited to follow the Clay Girl's journey from her creation to achieving self-awareness, pondering about the things that shape us all as humans.

La Niña Barro combines physical theatre, poetry, and traditional Zimbabwean music played live to tap into myths of creation and primal human instincts to bring this tale to life.

Touch tours available on request, please email to book.

6:45pm to 7:45pm
Dave Bailey: Say Something! Junkyard Dogs Backyard Theatre

Multi-awarding-winning Comedian Dave Bailey has something to say. In an age when everyone has an opinion on everything, come and listen to Dave tell you why you're all wrong, because sometimes it's better to listen.

Canterbury International Arts Festival Comedy Competition Winner 2017
Comedy Cafe New Act Winner 2015
"Bailey is the one to watch" (The Argus)
"Totally killed it as our show headliner. It was awesome and our Strangers loved you!" (The Poetry Café)

6:45pm to 7:45pm
The Polished Scar Pretty Villain Productions Ltd

4 stars I'm sure you know the Philip Larkin poem: the one about how your parents mess you up, because their parents did the same to them. Never has that process been laid out more clearly than it is in The Polished Scar, written and performed by Duncan Henderson. This is a one-man display of acting virtuosity, with a couple of interesting themes to explore. Read the full review.

We are all brothers and sisters, all born good, all born innocent. Duncan Henderson asks: What makes some people more equal than others? Where is the shift? Why do some strive for leadership, desire power, control and riches? These are our leaders of men, our shining examples.

What does it take to shape such a leader? Who carries the scars? What is the cost and who pays? You are invited to attend the making of a man in the image of the leader. The man who can send his troops into battle, who can privatise, who can siphon public funds into pockets of his friends.

6:45pm to 8:00pm
Quiz Night: The Musical East of the City Theatre Company

Half quiz night, half musical, this 2017 sell-out is back, with a new quiz.

Join two friends-with-benefits as they attempt a crucial heart-to-heart during a pub quiz. Will this intimate, original, musical portrait distract you from the serious quiz-ness of playing for the pot? Sparkly host Bruce Foresight asks the questions. No Googling allowed!

"With funny upbeat songs, wonderful musicianship and good performances from all the cast... "(Reviews Hub)

7:00pm to 7:55pm
In Search of Myself Distracting Cats Productions

Jim and Eve before, during, and after, a manic episode. Eve has to deal with the highs and lows of a mood she has no control over, delusions that change her personality, and the state of her mental health, while struggling with depression. Jim has to deal with the sharp memories and feelings connected to what happened, what she did, and what she said in the moments he couldn’t recognise her, and the way he has just made it worse.

"An incredibly important piece... powerful piece of theatre" (The Reviews Hub)

7:00pm to 7:55pm
Under the Skin Tik-sho-ret Theatre Company

'Under the Skin' tells one of the lesser-known stories of the Second World War. The play depicts the love affair between Nazi officer Anneliese Kohlmann and one of her female Jewish prisoners in Neuengamme Concentration Camp.  The play is based on the Belsen trial protocol of Kohlmann and on Holocaust survivors’ testimonies. It alternates between two time periods in order to tell the timeless story of a Holocaust survivor haunted by the ghosts of her past.

One of Time Out's 10 Must-See Shows at Camden Fringe.

7:00pm to 8:00pm
Black White with a Hash Brown Joe Bains

A tale of three colours.

The show starts as pristine white in Bethnal Green and devolves to brown in Whitechapel, finally complete blackness in the heart of Leyton; it looks at ourselves and at society through our filters of colour.

7:00pm to 8:45pm
The Lady Boys of Bangkok: Wonder Women Tour Exchange Events Ltd

Celebrating 20 diamante decorated years, the Lady boys ‘Wonder Women’ tour takes the UK's number one cabaret show to a new level. With some of your favourites from the last 20 glorious years re-imagined, added to new scenes of spectacular costumes, choreography and of course hilarious comedy! The glamour of Hollywood and the glitz of Las Vegas, with more songs and big-scale musical production numbers than you could point a perfumed glove at. A cabaret like no other cabaret, performed by girls like no other girls!

7:00pm to 9:00pm
The Odditorium Dr David Bramwell

If you live in Brighton, the chances are you already know about David Bramwell – purveyor of curiosities and champion of intelligent talk, thanks to his regular salon the Catalyst Club. His Fringe events are now an equally revered institution: part mind-expanding lectures, part entertainment, with a typically offbeat set of topics selected for the ever-changing agenda. They’re hosted this year in the 100-year-old Bosco theatre tent, itself a fascinating (if spartan) venue. The programme is massively varied, so check the full listings for day-by-day details.

Join Dr Bramwell for another five fascinating events: 'Singalong-a-Wickerman', Daisy Campbell's 'Pigspurt's Child', Ken Campbell's 10th anniversary tribute night, Mark Vernon on Ancient Greek philosophy and Dr David Luke on psychedelic plants.

Sun 13 May: Mark Vernon 'All you Need to Know About Ancient Greek Philosophy to Live Well'
Wed 16 May: Daisy Campbell's new solo show, 'Pigspurts Child'
Sun 20 May: 'The Ken Campbell Anniversary Show'
Tues 22 May: 'Singalong-a-Wickerman'
Wed 30 May: Dr David Luke 'Breaking Convention's'

7:00pm to 7:50pm
Bear North Brainfruit

4 stars A show with a dancing bear might sound barbaric… but relax, this particular bear wants to dance. There it stands at the side of the stage, the broadest of smiles on its big brown head, elegantly shimmying its big brown paws in time to Cajun folk songs. The songs are provided by a trio of musicians, who come from Brighton but tell us they're somehow in Canada, and a travelling poet has also tagged along. Oh – and did I mention that the bear is wearing a cheerful summery dress? Read the full review.

A comic combo including a dancing bear - yep, probably the only show in the Fringe to have one. Created by multi-award-winning comedian and director Roy Hutchins - recent winner of the ‘Best ensemble production’ at the Wellington Fringe for ‘Fiery Tongues’. This new show conjures up cajun folk n’ blues on bears, beavers, bugs and buffalos. Sue Bradley (Perrier winner for her work with Pookiesnackenburger) is on fiddle, Dr Blue’s on guitar, Roy’s on synth and we’re proud to introduce the golden voice of Caitlin Mckeon and the dancing talents of her brother Tom - aka THE BEAR

7:15pm to 8:15pm
Dan Evans: In Progress Dan Evans

Come and watch as award-winning, stand-up comedian, and much credited writer Dan Evans releases 53 minutes of his latest entertainment into the wild. Your only job is to be there on time and to face the right way.

"A favourite with audiences as well as with his notoriously hard-to-please comedic peers" (The Guardian)

7:15pm to 8:15pm
circoPitanga: Cordes Nuptiales circoPitanga

Cordes Nuptials is about a naive couple preparing for the most important moment, their wedding. But the rush and destination involve them in a cluster of buffoonish events. Only her mischievousness and his strength bring them to a ... happy end?

'Cordes Nuptiales', a performance of contemporary circus, physical theatre, high aerial flights and risky balances.

7:30pm to 8:20pm
Garry Starr Performs Everything PLAGUE OF iDiOTS

Nothing is sacred this Fringe as 'Garry Starr' tears through artistic genres with little regard for personal safety and even less regard for art.

A hilarious new physical comedy about over-ambition and underachievement from 'Plague of Idiots' frontman Damien Warren-Smith and Cal McCrystal, "Britain's funniest director" (The Guardian).

Disgraced actor Garry Starr is going it alone. Following his recent dismissal from the Royal Shakespeare Company due to ‘artistic differences’ he is determined to defy his critics by performing every genre of art in under 60 mins.

Relaxed performances: Please note that although this event will not be providing special adjustments, we welcome audience members who wish to express themselves with sound and movement and get very involved vocally. If you have any queries, please contact

7:30pm to 8:30pm
Dominic Holland: The Glory Year Dom Holland

A veteran stand-up with countless TV appearances to his name Dominic Holland is a 50 year old everyman making hilarity from his life which reflects the lives of his audience, because his experiences of life and parenthood are yours. Apart from the fact that his eldest son is Tom Holland, who plays Spider-Man in the new Marvel films. This is, of course, not very normal but it's fun to hear from the, by comparison, struggling old man.

So come along and laugh at yourself in the hands of a man who knows his game.

**** Ed Fringe 2017 in The Mail, Times, Guardian, Standard, Scotsman and Herald

7:30pm to 8:30pm
Tom Mayhew's Funeral (Previews) Quiet Boy Sshh

Tom Mayhew, Leicester Mercury Comedian of the Year Nominee 2017, invites you (and all your friends) to his funeral! It's a work-in-progress of his funeral, though, so some of the jokes might die.

"A fantastic alternative comic mind" (Broadway Baby)

"Obvious writing talent" (Chortle)

7:30pm to 8:30pm
Leonard Bernstein at 100 MOOT - music of our time

May 9: Bernstein 'Three Meditations from "Mass"', Benjamin Britten Sonata in C, Op.65, Aaron Copland 'Waltz & Celebration from"Billy the Kid"' for cello & piano - Anna Litvinenko.

May 16: Bernstein Clarinet and Violin Sonatas, Igor Stravinsky 'Three pieces for Clarinet', Morton Feldman 'For Aaron Copland', David Rakowski 'Anniversary' (UK premiere) - Rachel Gorman, Steve Dummer.

May 23: Bernstein 'Halil' for flute, piano & percussion, Messiaen 'Le Merle Noir' - Rebecca Griffiths, Daniel Lauro, Norman Jacobs.

May 30: Songs by Bernstein, Sondheim, Weill - Mehreen Shah, Zhanna Kemp.

7:30pm to 8:30pm
Stick Some Shoes On Harry Farmer presents

From our first dates, sexual frustration, sexual tension, Tinder, insecurities, boredom, to marriage. We’ve all gone through it, but do we ever come out of it? Did we really marry our soulmate? Join us for a hilarious, fast-paced, poignant hour following a set of characters facing the joys and challenges of being in and out of love in your 30s.

7:30pm to 8:45pm
Ghost Walk of the Lanes Ghost Walk of the Lanes

The Fringe programme’s Tours section is always fun to dip into, and this gleefully melodramatic circuit of Brighton’s labyrinthine Lanes is even more entertaining than most. Playing firmly for laughs, not scares, your black-caped guide packs plenty of storytelling into a comparatively short walk, as you wave back and forth through the secret squares and hidden alleyways of the old town. Take note, however, this is no place for cynics: wilful over-acting is part of the fun, and it’s a whole lot more enjoyable if you “ooh” and “aah” along.

'Ghost Walk of the Lanes' is a 75 minute tour of Brighton's oldest and most haunted quarter where hardly a street or lane does not have a spectral connection. Join Silas, Jasper of Ebenezer, all suitably dressed in full Victorian attire, and hear tales of hideous apparitions, poltergeists, gruesome murders and wandering spirits.

Tours also embrace much of the history of The Lanes. Stories are all based on long-established accounts of hauntings but are delivered with a good deal of comic respite.

7:30pm to 10:30pm
Rattle Tales Rattle Tales Ltd

We are Brighton based writers. For each show we’re joined by quality guest writers, chosen from open submissions. We started 'Rattle Tales' because we wanted to bring exciting new writing to the Brighton stage. We wanted to give the people who come to listen a chance to get involved and help fuel writers’ creativity. Our nights are part stage performance, part lively writing workshop and part night in the pub.

7:30pm to 8:30pm
Susan Harrison is a Bit Weepy Susan Harrison

'Susan Harrison is a Bit Weepy'

The latest multi character show from award-winning character comedian, Actress and Improviser, Susan Harrison. Brand new characters inspired by heartbreak and performed with joy.

It’s funnier than it sounds...

“First Class comic acting” (The Guardian)
“A fantastic character comedian” (Chortle)
“Smart and original absurdist comedy” (ThreeWeeks)
“Remarkable ease, brilliant comic timing and a sense of authenticity” (The List)
“One of the most entertaining hours of the festival” (British Comedy Guide)

7:30pm to 8:30pm
Ben McCarthy: Nevermind Ben McCarthy Comedy

After sold out festival runs and a sold-out international tour, coming to Brighton Fringe is Ben McCarthy's brand new show 'Nevermind'.

'Nevermind' is a fun stand-up comedy show which features something for everyone and includes storytelling of Ben's tours and life as a travelling stand-up comedian; dark, observational and relatable humour and everything in between, day-to-day life and personal stories in, well... nevermind that.

This is something for everyone in the show, join Ben as he takes you on the road to 'Nevermind'.

Touch tours available on request, please to book.

7:30pm to 9:30pm
Spurious The Bare-Faced Acting Company

Based on the true story of a Bristolian family: three generations of women fall pregnant at 18. They and the family will have to make some hard decisions. With so many lies necessary to keep up appearances, will everyone in the family manage to conceal the truth?

Touch tours available on request, please email to book.

This project is supported by a Go Think Big Brighton Fringe bursary.

7:45pm to 9:45pm
Circus Vegas The European Entertainment Corporation Ltd

A first for Brighton and a first for the Fringe
Never before seen in a circus big top, all the traditional elements but with added thrills, glamour and spectacle that you would expect when you think of Vegas.
The lions and tigers may be gone but they have been replaced with human daring, skill and incredible excitement.
A show of tension and an edge of your seat suspense, see the high wire performers, with no safety devices whatsoever, the amazing stunts of the sky wheel duo.
The lady who changes attire in the blink of an eye and the glamour of the Vegas dancers.
A show for everyone with that special American showbiz glitz

7:45pm to 9:45pm
1984 New Venture Theatre

4 stars Based on George Orwell’s famed novel, 1984 is a compelling piece of theatre about an oppressive regime in a fictional super-state called Oceania – where big brother is watching you all the time and loyalty to the Party is paramount. The central question for protagonist Winston Smith and his sweetheart Julia is – whom should they trust? Read the full review.

In George Orwell's 1984, people live under ignorant oppression in Oceania, a place where the Party scrutinises human actions with the ever-watchful eye of Big Brother. Defying a ban on individuality, Winston Smith dares to express his thoughts in a diary and pursue a relationship with the mysterious Julia.

These criminal deeds bring Winston to the attention of the opposition and O’Brien, who then must reform the nonconformist. 1984 has never been more relevant and is compelling as it is terrifying, introducing the watchwords for life without freedom: Big Brother is watching you.

Please note that smoking, strobe lighting and a smoke machine is is use throughout this performance.

7:45pm to 8:45pm
Antigone Alone Portrait Productions

3 stars Plays built on Greek myths are intimidating for many – but there's really nothing to fear from Antigone Alone. It's clear, accessible, and engaging; a strong solo performance of an easy-to-follow script. It focuses, as the title suggests, on the story of Antigone, whose brothers fought for control of Thebes in days of legend. The winning man refused to allow his defeated brother to be buried… blocking his way to the afterlife, and forcing Antigone to take matters into her own hands. Read the full review.

Creon, King of Thebes, has decreed that Polynices’ body must lie, unburied, where he fell in battle. The penalty for disobeying is death. His niece has defied the law and buried her brother’s body. What made her do it? Will Creon rescind his decree?

This gripping new solo play presents Antigone, daughter of Oedipus, as a defiant upholder of morality over political expediency, and of human rights over the demands of the state. Antigone is played by Joanna Lucas. Playwright Michael McEvoy’s solo shows on Van Gogh, Orwell, Machiavelli, Dickens, and Shakespeare have been seen around the world.

8:00pm to 9:00pm
Unbelievable! Unbelievable!

Valerio Sarà is an Italian eccentric who has toured his unique brand of surreal stand-up comedy across the UK. He was born in Naples, a city where even driving a car is a pleasurable chaos and an adventurous challenge! His experience of the city's variety and flavours lends a magnificent punch to his set.

8:00pm to 9:00pm
Caitlin WLTM Productions

5 stars I'm ashamed to say that I'd never heard of Caitlin Macnamara; ashamed, because this engrossing one-woman play is an hour-long rebuke for that oversight. The wife of poet Dylan Thomas, blamed by some for feeding his self-destructive reliance on revelry and alcohol, Mike Kenny's 2004 script urges us at last to see Caitlin in her own right. Speaking directly to us as she swigs from a bottle of whisky, she tells a story of poverty, betrayal, lust and abuse – yet also of love and fellowship. Read the full review.

Before the poet Dylan Thomas drank himself to death at the age of 39, he and his wife Caitlin binged and brawled their way all around the bars of Britain in the 1930s and 40s. In this one-woman show, Caitlin tells the story in her own brutally honest words, about her stormy but passionate, booze-fuelled and infidelity-riddled marriage to the tragic genius and her own unfulfilled ambitions.

"He had his poetry. He was a poet. You will have heard of him. And Caitlin Macnamara? Chances are that if you’ve heard of me. It’s because I married him."

8:00pm to 9:00pm
I Married An Alien Card Sharp Anton Binder Magic

I did the one-handed shuffle he’d shown me, which I’d spent a year practising. "In a poker game that’ll get you killed” he snarled, “you’re giving away the secret!”

I just did card tricks, but uncle Sidney, US airman, was a hustler.

“Magic isn’t about showing off. It’s about the effect you create, bending the laws of the universe. You don’t want them to think you have skills!”

Award-nominated performance artist Anton Binder returns to Brighton Fringe with his latest devised piece, a mix of drama and close-up illusion. Like Derren Brown directed by David Lynch.

This project is supported by a Brighton Lions bursary.

8:00pm to 9:00pm
The Return of Reuxberre Bereré Reuxberre Bereré

Careering from his glittering ex-career as an incomparably successful composer-performer on Broadway, Reuxberre Bereré spends just one preciously distilled hour showcasing his greatest hits in an attempt to restore his former resplendence whilst reminiscing on a life both, thwarted and triumphant in equal measure.
'Enchanting.' **** (The Independent),
'Quite simply a joy to watch.' ****( TIME OUT CRITICS CHOICE ),
'Devilishly charming.' **** (The Stage),
Off West End Nominated,
'Polished to Perfection. ' ***** (Reviews Hub),
'A frisson of Naughtiness.' **** (Broadway Baby),
'Steals scenes like John Barrowman on Speed.' (What’s on Stage).

8:00pm to 9:00pm
Police Cops In Space The Pretend Men

If you're hoping for a fun, uncomplicated night out, then look no further than this. The award-winning original Police Cops was a fast-paced, high-energy pastiche of a 1970's crime series; this sequel offers more of the same, but in the future. Occasionally poignant but mostly just silly, it's one to enjoy with friends and a beer or two: expect a preposterous plot, gleefully stereotyped characters, and plenty of physical hijinks. It packed out a good-sized venue at the Edinburgh Fringe last year, and I'm sure it'll go down a storm here as well.

Following 3 sell out runs at Soho Theatre, multi award-winning comedy trio The Pretend Men return with their critically acclaimed EdFringe 2017 sell-out show 'POLICE COPS IN SPACE'; an 80s 'Low-Fi Sci-Fi' set in the most dangerous place on Earth... Space.

Sammy Johnson, the last POLICE COP on Earth, must team up with Alien fighter pilot Ranger as they embark on an intergalactic adventure to find Earth, avenge his father and become the best damn POLICE COP IN SPACE.

“Farce at its most intelligent” **** (GQ Magazine)
“Big, consistent laughs... it’s not just funny, it’s exhilarating” (The Guardian)

8:00pm to 10:20pm
Covent Garden Double Bill Eluxifer

'Man of 1000 Farces', returns after last years Spiegeltent: Bosco sell-out performances, to present his award-winning comedy magic show. He fills the theatre, with a bombardment of Vaudeville characters, clowning illusions, mask, puppetry and sideshow.

'Circus & Other Time Wasters!' is a collection of utterly unnecessary feats that will excite and delight. Australian Corey Picket has devoted his useless life, mastering tricks and skills that are guaranteed to enthral and entertain. This show will take you from juggling and balance to cartoonesque physical comedy and big circus stunts.

8:00pm to 9:00pm
I Am Somebody Sirqus Alfon

A unique combination of beatboxing, clowning, chaos and comedy and lasers!
The irrepressible Sirqus Alfon represent a high-tech genre entirely of their own.
Overall Pick of the Fringe winner at Adelaide Fringe Festival 2017.

"A high-octane, electro clown ride through a bizarre post-internet world of pop culture, music, light and video" (The Adelaide Review)

"Sirqus Alfon is a breath of fresh air. It's innovative, it's clever, it's unique, and it's downright entertaining" (Channel 44)

This project is supported by the Pebble Trust Brighton Fringe International Touring bursary.

8:15pm to 9:15pm
Jake Baker: Work in Progress Jake Baker has a company now?

Up-and-coming comedian Jake Baker (twice nominated for the BBC New Comedy Award) brings his first solo hour to Brighton. Expect beguiling stories and big belly laughs as he examines success, failure, identity and pork pies.

"Definitely endearing" (Chortle)
"Imaginative and original" (The Scotsman)

8:20pm to 9:20pm
Stella Graham: Uncivilized Stella Graham

What do you do when you're no longer in control of steering the ship? How many times can you be wrong before you finally get it? Can a phone app make you less of a ticking time bomb? Do I need a lawyer?

Join Stella in a hilarious fight she thinks she can win.

“If you're a TV executive, drop what you're doing and go see her now” (The Skinny)

“Fun and original... self-assured, likeable and, crucially, funny” (Broadway Baby)

8:30pm to 9:20pm
Big Dumb Cats Childish Productions

Two word texts, a cat with no name, blood where it shouldn't be and a fashion show to die for. We are shaped both by our experiences and how we get through them.

Come share in some of the stories which have made Daniel John Smith the human he now appears to be, as he grapples with acceptance of himself, death, the future, and a nice warm jacket.

8:30pm to 10:00pm
Laughing Horse Pick of the Fringe Laughing Horse Comedy

A selection of the very best in stand-up comedy at Brighton Fringe.

A succulent smorgasbord of fantastically funny stand-up comedy headliners alongside the best in fresh new talent, with five different comics selected daily from shows all around Brighton Fringe. Sell-out shows at festivals worldwide including Melbourne, Adelaide and Edinburgh.

"A cracking comedy selection" ***** (Cream of the Fringe)

"A fantastic night of comedy" **** (ThreeWeeks)

"Kept the crowd well entertained" **** (Rip It Up)

"A Strong show of fresh comedy" **** (The Argus)

8:30pm to 9:25pm
Stupid Cupid Unrestricted View

Ever feel confused about Love? Where to find it and keep it? Do you think you touch yourself too often? Meet Cupid in training as she tests the waters with her flashy love skills. Side effects may include feelings of lust, unwelcome singing, inaccurate nostalgia and something we call 'neighbour fingers'...
If Love is a drug, meet the dealer

“Liz McMullen is a bubbly and endearing performer who gives us her all in Stupid Cupid” (Vancouver Fringe)
“Insightful & Delightful” (Two Cents & Two Pence, Vancouver)

Liz McMullen is Stupid Cupid and wherever more love is needed, you'll find her!

8:45pm to 9:45pm
Bisha K Ali's Life is A Work In Progress Get Comedy in association with Dabster Productions

Bisha K Ali brings a work in progress show to Brighton Fringe. As heard on The Guilty Feminist, BBC Asian Network and seen on BBC 3, this rising star of the UK circuit makes the political personal with her original, inventive voice. Come for the jokes, stay for the heartbreak. Sell-out show 2017.

8:45pm to 9:45pm
Adele Cliff: Sheep (Work in Progress) Laughing Horse

Adele Cliff, Dave's Top 15 Funniest Jokes of the Fringe 2017 and 2016, brings her brand-new show 'Sheep' to Brighton! Packed with gags, anecdotes and fun, this work-in-progress show is sure to amuse. Full of great new jokes to wow ewe all, flock in for some of the best comedy to be herd.

"I find her really annoying to watch, as I'm constantly kicking myself for not having thought of those gags first" (Gary Delaney)

9:00pm to 9:55pm
Frank Sanazi: Stuck in ze Bunker with You Peter Perke Productions

Frank Sanazi returns to Brighton with a chance to see his smash hit Edinburgh show 'Stuck in ze bunker with You'.

Along with his faithful partner Diva Braun, Frank shares with you his last few hours in the bunker through songs and hilarious anecdotes.

“He will leave you in stitches. The jokes are relentless” **** (EdFest Magazine)

“Genuinely funny... The best bunker experience one could have. Go along for some raucous laughs, great punchlines” (Broadway Baby)

9:00pm to 10:00pm
A Donkey Called Keith The Dirty Carols

Remember that song you like? Well, The Dirty Carols have ruined it for you forever with their own dirty, funny, surreal musical take on the songs you know and love. Be prepared for guffaws and perhaps a damp gusset (you, not us) as four Guildford gals sing about things that matter: pie fights, Woolworths’ pic’n’mix and why you should never keep mince in the bathroom.

Come for the laughs and leave with the knowledge that you won't get that time back again. Bring your best laughing teeth and a change of pants.

9:00pm to 10:15pm
David Hoyle's Love In Tim Whitehead Management

Post-drag, post-gender, impossible to beat, performance avalanche and avant-garde legend 'David Hoyle' returns for unmissable evening of high comedy, sound, vision, paint and song.

"There is nothing quite like it: bold and unique, electrifying and disarmingly humane" (Time Out)

9:00pm to 9:50pm
Smells Like Dean Spirit Dean Hendry

Dean's life is like Bake Off, but all the ovens are broken. Just add a Scottish accent, a large dollop of 37 years' worth of shame, sprinkle generously some vulnerability, add a pinch of gay and bon appetit! But what he lacks in self-esteem he makes up for in spirit. If the spirit is the seat of emotions and character, Dean’s spirit actually needs to take a seat and shut its cake hole.

9:00pm to 10:30pm
La Clique Spiegeltent International Pty Ltd

If I've got my sums right, this is La Clique's fifteenth year on the festival circuit – and they've consistently picked up four- and five-star reviews for their spicy mix of circus, cabaret, vaudeville and burlesque. You can expect a show that's a little bit racy, a little bit subversive, and crammed with a lot of variety – as a series of acts takes their turn in the spotlight, accompanied by a live house band. Tickets aren't cheap in Fringe terms, but you get ninety minutes of solid entertainment, and the bedrock of a good night out.

The international sensation 'La Clique' returns to Brighton after far too many moons... with an amazing lineup and seven-piece band. Far more than the original indescribably bizarre cabaret sideshow spectacular; 'La Clique' keeps pushing the boundaries of new vaudeville and subversion with a show that is every bit live concert as adult variety show. From the subterranean world of circus, comedy, cabaret, variety, magic, burlesque and subversive performance clubs.

"What a show... sexy and saucy, glitzy and glittery, naughty and... " (Edinburgh Review Christmas 17)
"Turns up the heat... a triumph!" (The Stage)

9:00pm to 9:45pm
Pickman's Model by HP Lovecraft The Other Realm Theatre Company

2 stars This disappointing adaptation of an HP Lovecraft story aims for creepy horror, but ends up more soulless than terrifying. The tale involves a painter, the eponymous Pickman, who's been kicked out of a New England art club; which isn't all that surprising, since he keeps drawing ghoulish figures feasting on human flesh. An English visitor called Thurber is entranced by Pickman's talent, and follows him to a tumbledown building in the oldest part of Boston. Down in the cellar, he finds a deep dark well… Read the full review.

We didn't review it ourselves last year, but Lovecraft horror Pickman's Model was broadly acclaimed elsewhere. The story surrounds an artist, the eponymous Pickman, who gains notoriety for his ghoulish drawings; it's narrated by an acquaintance of Pickman's, who's haunted by what his researches reveal. Last year's reviews praised the intelligent adaptation of Lovecraft's original plot, and the attention to detail lavished on the props and staging. At 45 minutes it's quite a brief piece, but for fans of Lovecraft or horror in general it sounds like mandatory viewing.

The Other Realm brings Lovecraft’s classic short story to the stage.

Pickman is an artist of extraordinary talent, but his gruesome paintings are born of a terrible secret. A dark and shocking tale that reveals the boundary between an artist’s genius and insanity...

(Highly Recommended: Fringe Review)

**** (Reviews Hub)

This is The Other Realm’s fourth Brighton Fringe, following the highly successful ‘I Love Luci’ in 2015, and ‘Which is Witch?’ in 2016.

9:15pm to 10:10pm
Waiting for Curry Twilight Theatre

Ever wanted to tell someone how you really feel?

Four friends, two couples, and a lot of history. Too much wine flows as they wait for their takeaway, and they share more than intended... including a past that two of them knew nothing about...

An evening where everything comes out of the woodwork: secrets, longings and jealousies. An evening that changes them and their friendships forever.

"An excellent play and cast needing wider circulation" 'Highly Recommended' (Fringe Review)

"Brilliant – funny and clever", "More people need to see this!" (Audience feedback)

9:15pm to 10:15pm
Your Bard Nicholas Collett Productions

Cheekily billed as featuring "additional material by Will Shakespeare", this one-man play gives a familiar question – did he really write his own work? – a novel twist. Pitched as a battle between a naysayer academic and the Bard himself, it's the latest work from local actor-playwright Nicholas Collett, whose previous historically-themed work has tackled (among other topics) the life of Horatio Nelson. Reviews from the rural touring circuit suggest it's an enjoyable play, highlighting Shakespeare's human side as well as the quality of his writing.

Did Will Shakespeare write his plays? Come and meet the man himself and take the lid off a legend in your local. He’ll tell you all about his family, what it’s like on tour and the glory days at the Globe. There’s no fourth wall here – we’re all in this together! Ladies and gentlemen, raise your glasses – 'You're Bard'!

“A piece of pure theatre magic” (Bay Life)

“The charismatic Collett commands the room in a truly intimate and engaging performance” (The Pitch, Kansas City)

“Lively and engaging... full of humour” (Metropolis, Kansas City)

9:20pm to 10:20pm
Covent Garden Double Bill Eluxifer

'Man of 1000 Farces', returns after last years Spiegeltent: Bosco sell-out performances, to present his award-winning comedy magic show. He fills the theatre, with a bombardment of Vaudeville characters, clowning illusions, mask, puppetry and sideshow.

'Circus & Other Time Wasters!' is a collection of utterly unnecessary feats that will excite and delight. Australian Corey Picket has devoted his useless life, mastering tricks and skills that are guaranteed to enthral and entertain. This show will take you from juggling and balance to cartoonesque physical comedy and big circus stunts.

9:30pm to 10:30pm
The Twins Macabre: Slay Twins Macabre

Meet Maurice and Ivy Macabre, the world’s most prolific ten-year-old killers with a penchant for finger painting and murder. Born and raised in a travelling Freakshow, the Twins address with audience with Vaudevillian flare, hosting a devilish spectacle of twisted sketches and original comedy songs. In this new show ‘Slay’, The Twins have been found guilty of hundreds of unimaginable murders... yet instead of being locked up, they have skyrocketted to an insane level of fame and celebrity! The tykes bring their creepiness to the world of social media, reality TV and tiny handbag dogs. A fast-paced performance intertwined with VT projections and music by Harvey Robinson. Prepare for: Comedy. Horror. Sass.

9:40pm to 10:35pm
Let Them Eat Jake: Work in Progress Jake Howie Productions

Creating your own kingdom is what life’s all about – one where you can live by your own rules, make your own choices, and be the person you truly are. Unfortunately, creating your own kingdom seems impossible when you’re not born into a dazzling world of riches. So join Jake as he searches to create his very own Queendom with a foreign lover, a misguided view of spirituality, and a whole lot of cake. If you don’t fit into the constraints of the kingdom, then free yourself into the Queendom!

9:45pm to 10:45pm
Shit-faced Shakespeare: Hamlet Magnificent Bastard Productions

This one’s the guiltiest of all pleasures, but it’s a true pleasure all the same. In case the phenomenon’s passed you by, it delivers exactly what it says on the tin: a classically-trained cast, a Bardic script, and an actor who’s (allegedly) rather the worse for wear. The ensuing scene-stealing antics are played for all the comedy they’re worth, with results which – whenever I’ve seen it in the past – have left me helpless with laughter. This year it's Hamlet getting the treatment, and it's safe to assume Denmark is in for a few creative surprises.

Shit-faced Shakespeare® is the genuinely hilarious combination of an entirely serious Shakespeare play with an entirely Shit-faced actor. What could possibly go right? With a single genuinely inebriated cast member chosen each night, no two shows are ever the same in this raucous, riotous, rampage through Shakespeare’s greatest work: 'Hamlet'.

This multi-award winning, interactive, cult-hit show has already ‘entertained’ over 170,000 audience members across the globe (although never actually inside it).

An always remember to enjoy Shakespeare responsibly!

10:00pm to 10:50pm
Niteskreen Niteskreen

In days of yore, British people would know it was time to go to bed when the TV stopped showing programmes, and started showing still images of the programmes they were going to show in the future, accompanied by music to make them feel like they were in an elevator that they needed to get out of.

But one man didn’t go to bed when that happened.
No, he watched the pictures.
He listened to the music. And he got ideas.

Come see what happened next.

10:00pm to 11:00pm
Nicoletta Wylde is Afraid of the Dark Babble Ghanoush Productions

What happens to our minds when the lights go out? 'Nicoletta Wylde is Afraid of the Dark' is a semi-autobiographical storytelling spoken word show about living with night terrors.

Set in the backdrop of the therapist’s office, Wylde brings her unique brand of surreal and bloody prose-performance to a journey through the monsters in the dark and just how much it takes to vanquish them.

“Heart-piercing spoken word” (Hook Magazine)
“Dark and obscure... always mesmerising” (The Independent Voice)

10:00pm to 11:00pm
Obitchuary Yes Mama!

In 2017, they won the Brighton Fringe Audience Choice Award. In 2018, they are dead... but as they always used to say "twas better to have lived and died than never to have lived at all". Maybe some stars just shine too brightly. Maybe they're not actually dead? Heck, maybe they're alive? Ah no, they really are dead. But what if they are aren't? But really they are. Please join us in celebrating the lives of Cara and Alex. Black clothing and loud sobbing encouraged. Quiche provided.

"Side-splittingly funny" **** (Broadway Baby)

10:00pm to 11:00pm
65, a Nun and a Frog Gerry Carroll

This is a solo show about male nuns and being 65. Because sometimes Grandad knows best. Think about looking forward 65 years back in 1952, what's better now than it was then? Bringing his second show to Brighton, Gerry says, "I spent 60 years scared that they would laugh at me. Now I'm terrified that they won't. I've been doing stand-up and clown for four years, and I'm doing a mad show about myself".

It's an original and hilarious take on life, told in clown, stand-up and song. Gerry performs regularly on the open-mic circuit in London, and in clown shows. There are some bad jokes.

10:15pm to 11:15pm
Sing Me a Joke, Titus TITUS COMEDY

A one-man musical comedy show taking stand-up to the next level. A knockabout combination of spoken jokes, funny songs and nonverbal piano-involved moments.

Stories of my life poured into the Churn of Comedy, ground up and served hot, with mirth on the side for your delight. All based on 20 years' experience of entertainment, 15 years of marriage, 10 years as a father of 3.

To be scoffed up... not at. Don't think twice, don't miss!

10:30pm to 11:30pm
Angus Dunican: The Vanity Project Cardboard Robot

Inspired by collecting stories for a eulogy, Angus looks at our evolving public selves, how our friends police who they think we should be, and thwart our attempts to try on new faces. Are we maturing nicely or messing with a winning formula?

Charismatic and assured, Angus's playful take on the myths we build throughout our adulthood will make you see your relationships in a new light.

Finalist, Amused Moose Laugh Off 2013, Leicester Square New Comedian 2015 and Comedy Gladiators winner 2017.

"Astute and well-written turns of phrase" **** (List)
"An unstoppable storyteller" ***** (Voice Magazine)