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#BIGC2015

This year, The Big C is staging two amazing fundraising events for Macmillan Cancer Support and they are both on 28 August.

All proceeds go to the charity, so know you’re not just treating yourself to a great time out, you’re also donating to one of the UK’s leading cancer charities.

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First off, the Big Cabaret Gala starts at 2pm at the EICC.  Tickets are £10 and can be bought here.  It’s a 70 minute variety show being hosted by the incredible Lili la Scala, with some very special performances from Puddles Pity Party, Uncompromising Artistry, Snookie Mono and many more.

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After that, why not take a tour of the city and see some other stuff before returning to the EICC for the Big Comedy Gala, a two hour extravaganza being helmed by Die Roten Punkte with a plethora of amazing talent. Ticket for this one are £18 and can be bought here.

This is the show you should not miss at the Fringe.

Sell Out Show in 2011-2013

Top Show in Scotland – The Skinny

Pick of the Day – Scotsman

Pick of the Week – Scotland on Sunday

Pick of the Fringe – Edinburgh Evening News

Top Ten Show – Daily Record

Hit Listed – The List

Sarah Millican and Ed Byrne before the show

Sarah Millican and Ed Byrne before the show

‘best audience of the entire Fringe is in the EICC tonight for the Big C’

– Chris Ramsey

‘last night I was hugged by Roy Walker.  It was good, but not right’.

– Sarah Millican

Frisky and Mannish perform Rude Boy in the style of the Bee Gees.

Frisky and Mannish perform Rude Boy in the style of the Bee Gees.

the audience are amazing’

– Mannish

‘way too important to miss

– Mike Coulter

Roy Walker is a Smooth Criminal

Roy Walker is a Smooth Criminal

‘the Big Comedy Gala gig was a dream to play and the staff at the EICC are so lovely. Super night’

– Vikki Stone

‘an astonishingly fabulous line-up’

– EastEnd Cabaret

Danny Bhoy gives a sneek peak of his new material to open the second half.

Danny Bhoy gives a sneek peak of his new material to open the second half.

‘I can’t wait’

– Caroline Rhea

Get your tickets now and follow #BIGC2015 for line-up news.

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Talking dirty with EastEnd Cabaret

EastEnd Cabaret is a saucy mix of excellent live music, x-rated lyrics, strong vocals, and hilarious comedy – all  wrapped up into a glossy package of 1930’s Berlin-style cabaret. Sex, songs, sass and LOLs…what’s not to love?!”

EastEnd Cabaret

Bernie and Victy, opening The Underbelly launch at the 2012 Edinburgh Fringe

I was first introduced to EastEnd Cabaret at an Edinburgh Fringe Reception event in Adelaide, Australia, in 2010.

As a civilan hanger-on among the festival professionals, I was standing in the Garden of Unearthly Delights – the epicenter of the Adelaide Fringe – sipping white wine out of a plastic cup and feeling mildly out of place, when Jen (‘Bernadette Byrne’), Victoria (‘Victor Victoria’) and Tom (producer, writer and marketer) arrived.

At the time, I had no idea what EastEnd Cabaret was – I just remember being relieved to have found a trio of friendly and funny fellow Adelaide Fringe novices to chat to. Of course, Jen and Victoria weren’t in character at the time, or I might have creamed my pants.

Nowadays, the ‘Queens of Smut’ (as Time Out London called them) make me totally moist, but at our first encounter I was still finding my feet in the world of cabaret, and I’m not sure how well my constitution would have coped with the brash, multi-sexual filth factory that is Bernie and Victy.

Fastforward two years and a few months to last August, and I finally got the chance to cream my pants in a good way, when I went to see EastEnd Cabaret do their thing at the Edinburgh Fringe. Their thing, by the way, is very dirty, very funny, and very good.

For those of you who don’t know, EastEnd Cabaret is a saucy mix of excellent live music, x-rated lyrics, strong vocals, and hilarious comedy – all  wrapped up into a glossy package of 1930’s Berlin-style cabaret. Sex, songs, sass and LOLs…what’s not to love?!

The act has had a busy few years since we first met, picking up a host of prestigious accolades and awards along the way. These include the coveted ‘Best Cabaret award’ at the 2012 Adelaide Fringe Festival, for their show ‘Notoriously Kinky’; a nomination for the Edinburgh Fringe TOAST ‘Best Cabaret’ award, later the same year; and a nomination for the Perth Festival’s ‘Best Cabaret Award’.

EastEnd Cabaret is currently staging their brand new show, Dirty Talk, at the Edinburgh Fringe – and we’re lucky enough to have them performing at this year’s Big Comedy Gala as well. I got myself a delicious sneak peak (or should that be dick tease?) at the Underbelly launch a couple of days ago, and personally, I can’t wait for my full hour fix next week!

I highly recommend you cabaret fans out there get yourselves tickets to their show (link at the bottom of this page), as the five minute glimpse you’ll be treated to at the Big C is guaranteed to leave you wanting more.

In the meantime, below is Bernie and Victy’s answers to our regular Big Comedy Gala blog Q&A – enjoy!

What is your involvement in The Big C?

VV: We’re going to be playing a few songs from our new show, ‘Dirty Talk’.

Who is your favourite comedy hero, act or actor?

BB: My favourite comedy act is a drunk man that is always in a park in East London. He shouts ridiculous things at passers by, dances with pigeons and even got naked in front of some nuns once. I could watch him for hours.

Favourite comedy moment (your own or someone else’s)?

VV: We once watched a guy shoot a confetti cannon directly into his crotch. Onstage. By accident. It shouldn’t have been so funny, but it really, really was.

What in your everyday life always makes you laugh?

BB: Watching Victy styling her moustache in the mirror every morning always makes me laugh. She does a hilarious tongue poking out face of concentration.

Who is your secret celebrity crush?

VV: I’m a big fan of Tom Selleck – but it may just be moustache envy…

In five words, why should people come to (or support) The Big Comedy Gala?

BB: Good comedy and good karma!

Joining EastEnd Cabaret on the night are The Boy with Tape on his Face, Sean Hughes, Greg Proops, Caroline Rhea, Vikki Stone, Joe Lycett & Patrick Monahan, among others.

Follow @bigcomedygala on Twitter – #BigC2013

Book tickets for the Big Comedy Gala

Book tickets for EastEnd Cabaret’s Dirty Talk

Text and photo by Josef Church-Woods – web: www.josefchurchwoods.com, Twitter: @josefcw

Final Big C line-up announced – see you Monday!

ROY WALKER
GEORGE WENDT
JOSIE LONG
SUSAN CALMAN
NICK HELM
FRISKY & MANNISH
TOM STADE
FASCINATING AIDA
DAN NIGHTINGALE
STEVE SHANYASKI
JOE LYCETT
THE BOY WITH TAPE ON HIS FACE

We’re thrilled to announce the final line-up for the Big Comedy Gala, in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support, with George Wendt kicking off the show this coming Monday evening by introducing our fabulous host, Roy Walker.

Wendt, who played Norm in Cheers and who is also known for appearances in The Simpsons and Family Guy, is in Edinburgh for Re-Animator The Musical at Assembly George Square this August.

Roy Walker and George Wendt head up an all star line-up at Venue150@EICC on Monday 13 August, including 2011 Fosters’ Comedy Award Nominee Nick Helm; BBC Radio 4 regular Susan Calman; Tom Stade; Cheap Flights YouTube sensation Fascinating Aida; Josie Long; Fringe favourite The Boy With Tape On His Face; and comedy newcomer Joe Lycett.

Those of you who joined us last August at for the inaugural Big Comedy Gala  – also at Venue150@EICC – will be pleased to hear that we raised £18,433, all of which went directly to Macmillan Cancer Support. This year our goal is to raise £20,000.

You can book tickets now by calling 0131 226 0000 or 0844 847 1639 or buy online: www.venue150.com or www.edfringe.com / www.bigcomedygala.com. Tickets: £22 (subject to booking fee).

You can also find the Big C on Twitter (@bigcomedygala), and Facebook (facebook.com/bigcomedygala or search for big comedy gala).

Please share this message with your friends, family and on social media!

The Big Comedy Gala in Aid of Macmillan Cancer Support, Monday 13 August 2012, at 21:30 (2hrs). Box Office: 0844 847 1639 or 0131 226 0000.

Josie Long joins the Big C line-up

Josie Long joins the Big C line-up

We’re excited to the point of leakage to announce today that the writer of teen TV sensation Skins, Josie Long, will be joining the line-up at the 2012 Big Comedy Gala!

Long has been a Fringe favourite since winning the Comedy Award for Best Newcomer in 2006 and has since enjoyed a fruitful relationship with the Beeb, appearing on BBC2 show The Bubble, hosting BBC6’s Saturday Morning show with Andrew Collins, and giving a memorable guest appearance on Never Mind the Buzzcocks.

At the age of 17, she won the BBC New Comedy Award and is known to many from her appearances on Channel Four’s 8 out of 10 Cats. As well as writing for Skins, Josie appeared in Series 1 and 2 as the careers advisor.

She will join a star-studded line-up at the Macmillan fundraiser, including: Roy Walker (host), George Wendt (intro), Susan Calman, Nick Helm, Nina Conti, Tom Stade, Fascinating Aida, Joe Lycett, Dan Nightingale, Steve Shanyaski and The Boy with Tape on his Face.

For more information, interview requests or images, please contact Miriam Attwood on 07825 642225 or email press@bigcomedygala.com.

You can also find the Big C on Twitter (@bigcomedygala), and Facebook (facebook.com/bigcomedygala or search for big comedy gala).

The Big Comedy Gala in Aid of Macmillan Cancer Support, Monday 13 August 2012, at 21:30 (2hrs). Box Office: 0844 847 1639 or 0131 226 0000. Buy online: www.venue150.com or www.edfringe.com / www.bigcomedygala.com. Tickets: £22 (subject to booking fee of £2 to £2.40 per ticket + postage).

Q & A with Susan Calman

Susan Calman

Susan Calman

Following on from our announcement last week that Susan Calman has joined our Big Comedy Gala line-up, here’s a wee cheeky Q & A with Susan for your pleasure!

What is your involvement in the Big Comedy Gala?

I’m performing at the Big Gala Comedy.

Who is your favourite comedy hero, act or actor?

Difficult to name one but I think Joyce Grenfell would be my pick.

Favourite comedy moment (your own or someone else’s)?

When I saw French and Saunders live in Edinburgh in the early 90’s: I’ve never forgotten how wonderful they were.

What in your everyday life always makes you laugh?

Almost everything. I try to laugh almost all the time.

Who is your secret celebrity crush?

Can’t say. I’m just married; I’d like it to last a year.

In five words, why should people come to (or support) The Big Comedy Gala?

Funny night for wonderful cause.

You heard what the lady said, guys; a funny night for a wonderful cause! So with less than two weeks to go, get your tickets now if you haven’t already bought them!

The Big Comedy Gala in Aid of Macmillan Cancer Support, Monday 13 August 2012, at 21:30 (2hrs). Box Office: 0844 847 1639 or 0131 226 0000. Buy online: www.venue150.com or www.edfringe.com / www.bigcomedygala.com. Tickets: £22 (subject to booking fee of £2 to £2.40 per ticket + postage).

You can also find the Big C on Twitter (@bigcomedygala), and Facebook (facebook.com/bigcomedygala or search for big comedy gala).

BBC Radio 4 regular Susan Calman joins Big Comedy Gala celebrity line-up!

Susan Calman joins the Big C

Susan Calman, the star of Rab C Nesbitt, BBC Three’s Dead Boss, Have I Got News For You, and Channel 4’s Ugly Kid, as well as being a regular on Radio 4 (The News Quiz, The Unbelievable Truth, Vote Now) and Radio Scotland (Funny Friends), today announces she’s joining the all-star line-up at the 2012 Big Comedy Gala in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support.

From Glasgow, Calman gave up a lucrative career in corporate law to become a comedian and has proved herself one of the fastest rising stars in comedy. She reached the semi-finals of the BBC New Comedy Awards and So You Think You’re Funny in 2005, she was also a finalist in Funny Women in 2006.

The feisty Glaswegian went on to become resident compere at Glasgow’s famous comedy club, The Stand, and has been awarded Best New Comedian at the Scottish Variety Awards as well as a Scottish BAFTA.

Calman will join a star-studded line-up at the Macmillan fundraiser, including: Roy Walker (host), George Wendt, Nick Helm, Nina Conti, Tom Stade, Fascinating Aida, Joe Lycett, Dan Nightingale, Steve Shanyaski and The Boy with Tape on his Face.

For more information, interview requests or images, please contact Miriam Attwood on 07825 642225 or email press@bigcomedygala.com.

You can also find the Big C on Twitter (@bigcomedygala), and Facebook (facebook.com/bigcomedygala or search for big comedy gala).

The Big Comedy Gala in Aid of Macmillan Cancer Support, Monday 13 August 2012, at 21:30 (2hrs). Box Office: 0844 847 1639 or 0131 226 0000. Buy online: www.venue150.com or www.edfringe.com / www.bigcomedygala.com. Tickets: £22 (subject to booking fee of £2 to £2.40 per ticket + postage).

The Big Comedy Gala in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support is in its second year. The sell-out 2011 event raised £18,433.08 for Macmillan Cancer Support and featured Ed Byrne, Rich Fulcher, Fred MacAulay, Sarah Millican, Danny Bhoy, Frisky & Mannish and Roy Walker.

Mad About The Boy

We first became aware of the Boy with Tape on his Face in February 2010.  We were in Adelaide enjoying the sun and catching up with long lost and newly aquainted relatives during the Adelaide Fringe Festival.

Having no time to plough through their fairly hefty programme we decided to ask around.  What’s the big show this year?  What’s the must have ticket?  What should we see before we head back to Edinburgh?  Every single time, the respondent was emphatic.

“The Boy with Tape on his Face”.

Difficult to describe without demeaning his talent by implicating him with mimes, clowns and street performers, the truth is this: Tape Face Boy is the perfect amalgam of all three disciplines.

Indeed, in the Bosco Tent within the Garden of Unearthly Delights that evening, we were delighted to witness the bringing together of the very best of these genres into a rock solid fifty-five minute show while also winning favour with the new in-laws by getting them a sneak peek of the next big thing.

The. Next. Big. Thing.  Every year at the Edinburgh Fringe this phrase is bandied around like hair colour.  Anyone with a 5 star review can be it.  The next big discovery.  The one to bank on.  The person for whom all other successes will be measured against (in that financial year at least).

Remember last year’s next big thing?  No, we didn’t think so.  But like the gaffer tape across his mouth, this time it stuck.  And good god is it sticky.

Since leaving the Boy with Tape on his Face finishing off his Adelaide run amid a bidding war from Edinburgh’s Big 4 and a barrage of incredible reviews his star has done nothing but rise.

He’s toured the world, enjoyed two massive hit shows in the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, stole the shows at last year’s Royal Variety Performance and BBC Comedy Prom while bagging himself a BBC3 Pilot as part of the Comedy Kitchen platform, and like Gaga has her Little Monsters and Beiber has Beliebers, the Boy has a growing army of Silent Ones.

And all without uttering a single word.

Last year we were delighted that he agreed to perform as part of the Big Comedy Gala in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support and once more, we are delighted that on the evening of the 13th August, he’ll be coming off the Pleasance stage, piling into a taxi and taking on the closing slot of our show.

For those of you that seen the show last year, you’ll be aware that there is a very real chance that at this point in the evening you may well end up being ‘the show’.  But how does he charm punters onto his stage so easily?  Here he explains to Time Out London:

‘I treat them a wee bit like dolls,’ he says, audience participation at a Tape Face gig is never humiliating. ‘If there’s too much responsibility on an audience member there’s too much pressure for them to fail whereas if you give them the tiniest amount of responsibility, the moment they achieve it and the audience goes crazy, they feel like a star.’ Whether they’re forming a makeshift Jackson 5 or being transformed into a human puppet, this gentle approach comes from years of seeing ‘audience members treated badly’, he says. ‘I want them leave the stage a hero.’

Preparation is currently underway for his brand new show ‘More Tape’ at the Pleasance Courtyard and we were lucky enough to steal him away to answer a few very important questions

What is your actual name?

The Boy with Tape on His Face

And exactly how old are you?

Not sure. Still Boy not Tape Man.

How would you describe your job?

Stand up comedian who doesn’t talk

And what is your involvement going to be at The Big Comedy Gala in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support? 

I will be performing comedy antics at the event

We’re sure you get asked this all the time but who is your favourite comedy hero, act or actor? 

Everybody thinks I should like Charlie Chaplin but I prefer Buster Keaton

Well, the Guardian did refer to you as a latterday Buster Keaton.  What’s your favourite comedy moment from the past few years?

I once saw a magician get locked into a mailbag and not get out. Longest yet funniest fifteen minutes of my life.

What in your everyday life always makes you laugh? 

Being the owner of two bald cats and a dachshund

And who is your secret celebrity crush?

The guy from the Go Compare commercials, I would crush him with a shipping container and be given a medal.

In five words, why should people come to (or support) The Big Comedy Gala?

Laughter is the best medicine for everything in Life.

Not five, but a perfect summary of why the Big C exists.

The Big Comedy Gala is in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support. It takes place on Monday 13 August 2012 at 21:30 (2hrs), and tickets are £22 (subject to booking fee of £2 to £2.40 per ticket + postage).

You can book tickets now by calling 0844 847 1639 or buying online at venue150.com.

You can also buy tickets for The Boy with Tape on his Face: More Tape here: