“Spending time at the Edinburgh Fringe is like navigating an M.C. Escher lithograph with extremely changeable weather.”
WHO: Alasdair Beckett-King
WHAT: “The award-winning Alasdair Beckett-King returns to this timeline with a dimension-hopping stand-up comedy show. Is a better world possible? Yes! It already exists, but you don’t live there. ABK makes the best of a bad timeline in this ramshackle jaunt through a multiverse of wonders. Also, Winston Churchill performs the best of Queen. ‘A singular and truly distinct act, Alasdair Beckett-King creates his own multi-faceted world’ **** (Scotsman). ‘Alasdair Beckett-King is a nice man’ ***** (EdFestMag). ‘This is a comedy show’ **** (One4Review). **** (Fest) **** (Voice) **** (Three Weeks).”
WHERE: Pleasance Dome – JackDome (Venue 23)
WHEN: 18:50 (60 min)
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Is this your first time to Edinburgh?
Spending time at the Edinburgh Fringe is like navigating an M.C. Escher lithograph with extremely changeable weather. Contorted bridges and impossible staircases thronged with clowns, silent discos, acapella singers and student impro troupes going through a difficult time in their personal lives. A happy comedian, a sad comedian, a bitter comedian – in many cases this is the same comedian. But there are so many things to look forward to. You can walk up Arthur’s Seat with Londoners who insist on calling it “a mountain”. You can adopt an Edinburgh accent and give inaccurate directions to American tourists. You can get baked potatoes with vegan haggis on Cockburn Street. It’s a veritable wonderland, and I love it.
What’s the biggest thing to have happened to you since Festivals ’18?
Since 2018 I have started to learn lock-picking, which is bound to pay dividends at some point. I also created an animated intro to my show in the style of 1980s cartoons. It took most of ‘18/19 to do, because I tried to make the pastiche as authentic as possible, and because I don’t value my own time highly enough. But it worked out nicely, because the video was shared by other comedians who I love and admire, and the British Comedy Guide said it might be “the best 100 seconds of this year’s Edinburgh Fringe.”
I mean, the show is currently over 3300 seconds long. But an endorsement’s an endorsement, right?
Tell us about your show.
The Interdimensional ABK is a stand-up comedy show written (and animated) by me. I’ve done work in progresses at festivals all over the UK, and I hope I’ll get to do it f a few times after the Fringe. The premise is something I’ve been working on for a little while: I come from a parallel dimension called the A Timeline which is slightly better than the B Timeline (AKA, the real world). So, I get to make jokes about all the best and worst things in our world, from an outsider’s perspective. So, there’s silliness, whimsy, and absolutely several proper jokes. We’re talking double figures, easy.
What should your audience see at the festivals after they’ve seen your show?
I think people should try to see a variety of shows. Stroll up and down Cowgate and see if any of the flyers take your fancy. As well as the massive venues, see shows on the Free Fringe, at the Stand and the Monkey Barrel. I also love a bit of Lothian Gothic, so I recommend a Ghost Walk around Greyfriar’s Kirkyard and a visit to the Camera Obscura on Castlehill. Finally, I have to recommend a small vegan-friendly pizza place called Novapizza in the New Town. Vegan pizza is everywhere these days, you can get it at bus stops, you can get it on the NHS. But Novapizza were making it when no one else was. They’re pioneers in the art of pretend-o cheese. True heroes. Shows I would recommend people to see? Jon Long: Planet Killing Machine.
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