Eric and Little Ern pays tribute to working friendship between Morecambe and Wise
Showbiz legends remembered by Ian Ashpitel and Jonty Stephens at 2013 Edinburgh Festival Fringe
This article is from 2013.
The legacy of those incontrovertible behemoths of British comedy, Morecambe and Wise, lives on with this new play. Written, devised and performed by Ian Ashpitel and Jonty Stephens, it looks back on 41 years of a working friendship from Wise’s final days at the Nuffield Hospital before his death in 1999.
Aiming to bring to life the ‘feel, look and sound’ of an evening with Eric and Ernie, the show combines much-loved sketches in revue with additional original material by Eddie Braben, Sid Green and Dick Hills. It also takes a peek behind the curtain at their (not always so cheerful) lives offstage, a tactic that earned success for Bob Golding’s one-man performance Morecambe at the 2009 Fringe.
Ashpitel and Stephens reckon their own decades-long friendship helps them recreate the chemistry of that incomparable duo, though they suggest it helps that Ashpitel ‘just happens to have short, fat, hairy legs’.
Gilded Balloon Teviot, 622 6552, 3–26 Aug (not 7, 14), 3.15pm, £11.50–£12.50 (£10.50–£11.50). Previews 31 Jul−2 Aug, £6.50.