The Holyrood Tavern – Edinburgh Festival 2006
Its amazing what you can do with a tin of green paint.
Its even more amazing what you can do with a bottle of Magners
The fire brigade kicking doors down
They found the fire – now all they need is a hose
Mr Miller laughs his head off at The Holyrood
Mr Miller vets the punter
Our supporter at Lindsays
The Chuckle Brothers getting pissed up
Me brotherŐs pissed off
Al Stick having a laugh
Krysstal plays darts
Henning & Otto womanising
Still at it – with Laura this time
Mike Belgrave joins the flyer brigade
Frank Sanazi reads MikeŐs flyer
KrysstalŐs biggest fan
SabrinaŐs film crew
Luka the barman
Brian & Krysstal & Friends
The guitar I bought from Cash Converters
The guitar I didnŐt buy
The Holyrood Tavern – Edinburgh Festival 2005
Peter Buckley Hill, Boothby Graffoe with Brian Damage & Krysstal
Until the last weekend of this year's fun fest, the most un-remarked-on development at the Fringe was the creative rise of the tiny and shabby Holyrood Tavern, a 50-or-so seater drab room behind a dingy pub at the bottom of the Pleasance Hill en route to the old Gilded Balloon and the new Smirnoff Underbelly. Seldom visited by Armani-clad media moths, only six years ago the Holyrood Tavern used to have naff shows you wouldn't want to see even when drunk and wearing a thin tee-shirt on a rainy day. In the last five years, though, it has been programmed by Vicky de Lacey (female half of the Brian Damage & Krysstal comedy act) and the Holyrood has become a fascinating hotbed of interesting acts - some brilliant, some talented though underdeveloped and some just plain bizarre.
Last year, the Holyrood Tavern's Wil Hodgson won the Perrier Best Newcomer award.
This year, their Laura Solon rightly won the prestigious main Perrier award for Kopfraper's Syndrome while, with less of a fanfare, their Desperately Seeking Sorrow (Johnny Sorrow & Danny Worthington) was nominated for the new Malcolm Hardee Oy Oy award.
Vicky de Lacey and Brian Damage run the Pear Shaped comedy clubs in London and Sydney and are shaping up as the new Malcolm Hardee, although adding a pair of breasts to his legendary bollocks. They drink, they can spot talent and they run fascinatingly creative bills in shabby venues.
So, while the media moths are attracted to the brightly-coloured and wackily-posed posters of the three (or, with the Underbelly, four) main venues and sign up the Douglas Bader end of the creative spectrum - acts with no legs - the really interesting acts have been passing them by.
It will be interesting to see if this changes next year for two reasons. One is that Pear Shaped at the Holyrood Tavern have now won Perrier Prizes at two consecutive Fringes.
John Fleming – Writers Guild
Edinburgh Festival 2005
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