How not to get ahead in conning funding bodies out of their cash
Rob Mulholland has quite a beef with the Edinburgh Fringe. Deliberately side-lining working-class comics, it lays on a platform for the middle-classes to ponce on about their hang-ups and First World problems, their shows usually ending with a poignant finale set to some emotionally-manipulative string-laden music. You might have assumed that these thoughts would have been better served as an opinion piece before the Fringe started, except Mullholland had already written that for a well-regarded online comedy site.
So, despite that box having been ticked, the northern comic opts to spend a bit more time than necessary repeating his claims instead of actually putting a show together that might prove he has something new to offer. When he finally gets to the point of Popular Comedian, it revolves around his admittedly amusing success in fooling Arts Council England into signing off some cash in order for him to put on an issue-laden play in August.
The remainder of the show details the various non-creative and occasionally stomach-churning ways he utilises his deceitful windfall while trying to keep the awful bureaucrats at bay. And then, with full irony cranked up to 11, he delivers a very Fringey staged finale.
Just the Tonic at The Caves, run ended.