An unforgettable List Festival party, the early favourites from our reviewers, and some hot tips for the first weekend
Hello, you. Welcome to Fringesider, your comprehensive round-up of everything that's going on at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2017. We'll be filling you in on all you could possibly want, or need to know. Want find out what shows our reviewers have been loving? Check. Want to know what amazing gigs are happening across the city? Check that, too. Want to know what meal deal combination Reginald D Hunter has been enjoying between shows? I'm working on it.
The List Festival Party
Reuben Kaye's rendition of Iggy Azalea's 'Fancy' brought down the House at the 2017 List Festival Party, and revellers enjoyed a fruity pint of Blue Moon on the house (credit: Cat Thomson)
The ribbon has now been cut. The 25th annual List Festival Party kicked off the 2017 celebrations and it was a helluva time we had at Summerhall. Joining us at the quarter century bash were the likes of Red Bastard, Reuben Kaye, John Kearns and Steen Raskopoulos, whose one-man sketch show (heavy on the ol' audience participation) is a rare treat.
Tessa Coates – Primates ★★★☆☆ Tessa Coates is performing alone this year, without her Massive Dad cohorts, and her debut solo hour is one to be proud of. Primates is 'a promising debut about biology, anthropology and the word "penis"', and a show which does Coates' considerable talent justice and more than makes up for the Massive Dad-sized gap in this year's programme. (read the full review of Primates) Pleasance Courtyard, 5–26 Aug, 3.30pm, £7–£9 (£6–£8). £9.
Andrew Maxwell – Showtime ★★★★☆ A relative veteran of the Festival, performing for 23 years now, Andrew Maxwell is still coming up with the good, never short on inspiration or lacking in that unstoppable Dublin charm. We enjoyed Showtime a lot – calling it 'an unstoppable hour of mojo-fuelled mischief' – and Maxwell is as sharp as ever. Long may it continue. (read the full review of Showtime) Assembly George Square Theatre, 5–27 Aug (not 14), 9pm, £13–£15 (£12–£14).
Good With Maps ★★★★☆ All the way from Australia, Siren Theatre Co's Good With Maps is a 'deeply rewarding piece of theatre'. We were moved to bits by Jane Phegan's performance in Noëlle Janaczewska's show about loss and discovery that liberally draws upon literary classics for inspiration. It's a show that 'balances cerebral exuberance with shattering emotional power.' (read the full review of Good With Maps) C primo, until 28 Aug (not 14), 5.30pm, £9.50–£11.50 (£7.50–£9.50).
Danish punks Iceage kick off a first class month of music programming at Summerhall (credit: Cali Dewitt)
Iceage Summerhall's music programme is outstanding all year round, and for the Festival they raise the game higher still. Danish punks Iceage bring their enthralling live show to the Scottish capital on Saturday night. There's a stylish aloofness to their performances, but they're one of the most entertaining groups around. Top notch support comes from Edinburgh's weird pop experimentalists D T H P D L. Summerhall, 5 Aug, 7pm, £16.50.
Tony Law – Absurdity for the Common People The shy and retiring Tony Law will ease you into your hectic day, with a soothing set of family friendly jokes permeating his midday set. Only messing! Yes, comedy's most dedicated surrealist brings musical instruments, masks, and the occasional frank, lucid observation on alcoholism and mental health, to the Stand at noon, every day, for what's guaranteed to be an eventful run. The perfect way to blow off any cobwebs you may have. The Stand 5, until 28 Aug (not 14), 12 noon, £12.50 (£11.50) Joseph Morpurgo – Hammerhead Nominated for the 2015 Edinburgh Comedy Award for the incredible Soothing Sounds For Baby, Joseph Morpurgo is back with Hammerhead, and the word on the street is that he's brought another stunner to Edinburgh. Tickets are already starting to run low, with the first Saturday a sell out. Trust us, you do not want to miss this masterful performer. Pleasance Courtyard, until 28 Aug (not 14), 8pm, £12 (£11)
What about you, then? What have you been enjoying at this year's Fringe? Have you been seeing an old favourite, perhaps? Or maybe you've taken a punt on something different and new, and ended up loving it, and now you want to tell the world. Perhaps, the amusing and #contemporary #political name of an artisanal coffee vendor made you spray your americano all over your nice new shirt? That's covfefe!
If you want to get touch about shows, or any of the wild and wonderful things you've seen, use the hashtag #fringesider on Twitter.