George Rigden: Spooning With Uri
- Craig Angus
- 16 August 2019
True story of a teenager's celeb friendship is both funny and dark
It sounds a lot like George Rigden has invented the story at the heart of his second Fringe hour. Spooning With Uri is stranger than fiction, a bizarre tale that's disturbing and a little bit heart-breaking, but very funny indeed. He calls it an 'interesting thing to fall into your lap as a performer', which is a massive understatement.
The background is that Rigden, who was a lonely and bullied teenager, became an enthusiastic autograph hunter, and in doing so struck up a correspondence with the self-described 'telepathist, clairvoyant and mental bender' Uri Geller. 'I was 14, he was 56. Any questions?' the comic deadpans. Rigden's stage persona is a touch laddish but ultimately self-deprecating and vulnerable, and brings frequent laughs from the audience. But it also allows for some pathos to be injected into the show.
He uses the subject to talk about bullying and absent fathers, as well as express his view on Geller and the strange things the pursuit of fame will do to people. There are a few tech issues, and a gag reliant on an internet connection that he'd be wise to cut, but on balance, Spooning With Uri is a success. Best of all, his old pal Uri has got wind of the show and is sending what can only be described as self-centred messages of support. The plot continues to thicken.
Just The Tonic at The Caves, until 25 Aug, 6.15pm, £5–£6 (£5) in advance or donations at the venue.