Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2014 interview: Andrew Maxwell takes on the Scottish Independence referendum
'Nationalism is folly, it always ends in violence... Borders and flags are just false nonsense'
This article is from 2014.
The comic with arguably the Fringe’s ‘most quintessential Edinburgh name’ is grasping the thistle of Scottish independence, with his show title, Hubble Bubble, a misquote from Shakespeare’s Scots play, adding ‘an extra layer of bullshit’ that Andrew Maxwell relishes. In his 20th festival, he’s allowing all the local characters he’s introduced in recent years to ‘do the talking’: Leith Junkie, Sandy the Golfer, Scottish Jesus, Gay Keith, Forbes New Town, Scottish Granny and the Warrior, ‘who used to do a lot of leaping off the high board at the Commonwealth Pool and now collects shopping trollies’.
Performing just 12 nights because of the subject’s ‘sensitivity’, the London-based Irishman brings an interesting perspective. His great-grandfather left Edinburgh’s Cowgate slums with James Connolly to promote socialist revolution, but while the latter was executed for leading Ireland’s 1916 Easter Rising, his Christian socialist friend rejected ‘blood sacrifice’.
Maxwell ventures that ‘when you unnecessarily put another arbitrary line in the sand of human beings, either side of the line ends up being ruled by the worst cunts. That’s what happened in Ireland. Nationalism is folly, it always ends in violence. There’s clearly only one type of humans on Earth: that’s humans. Borders and flags are just false nonsense.’
Assembly Rooms, 0844 693 3008, 1–12 Aug, 10.20pm, £15 (£13).