Preview: Beardyman comes to Edinburgh
Bringing beatbox-based improv to the masses
This article is from 2016.
The key to improv, according to Beardyman, is that when you get something wrong, try to make it look as though it's actually going right. If that is his genuine secret to success, then he has been gloriously half-messing up for years now, ever since he discovered that adlibbing beatbox-based music was his thing.
Born plain old Darren Foreman, he got into comedy while studying philosophy at Sussex University and stumbled into beatboxing after doing it for a sketch while performing in an improv troupe. It went down well, word spread and demand grew to the point where he was asked for a stage name ahead of flyers being printed up for some solo gigs in Brighton. He happened to be a man who had a beard, and the rest is improv history.
He's back in Edinburgh playing in front of large crowds at the Pleasance Grand, doing his One Album Per Hour show in which he will be producing just that based on your suggestions. In a recent interview with Decoded Magazine, he summed up his ethos thusly: 'I've always seen myself as a thing that does stuff for reasons. I've never known the reasons, but I'm pretty sure there are reasons. How can we ever know the ultimate reason … maybe there isn't one.' That's good enough for us.
Beardyman: One Album Per Hour, Pleasance Courtyard, 18–24 Aug, 11.45pm, £12.50–£14 (£11.50–£13).