Funny At The Fringe – INTERVIEW – Peter Marino – Show Up, Kids!

Screen Shot 2018-06-20 at 12.13.07Name Of Show: Show Up, Kids!

Time: Noon

Date:    Jul 29-31 Aug 1-14, 16-21, 23-26

Location:   Laughing Horse @ The Counting House – The Lounge (Venue 170 )

Hello Peter! Tell us about your show Show Up, Kids! 

Show Up, Kids! is an improvised show where the hopes, fears, and dreams of 4-10-year-old kids (and their guardians) are incorporated into a one-man kids’ show – from a guy who’s never done a kids’ show. The main act didn’t show up and left all of these props, costumes, set pieces, and music on the stage, so I to take on the task of doing something that scares me by creating a show on the spot; with the kids also controlling the story, set, props, and music.

How did you come up with the name of your show that your taking to the Fringe?

I’ve been doing the adult version, Show Up, for over a year and realized that it might be fun for kids to be a part of a stage show that they themselves create. So, I just added the word “kids” to it. And an exclamation point, because…kids!

Tell us a little bit about your style of improv?

What I love about the kids’ show is that I am truly improvising from the edge of my seat. They offer so many odd, cute, strange, and funny suggestions both before the improv starts and DURING it, that I must completely accept everything and incorporate all of it so the kids feel like they really are a part of the show.


What will your set be about?

The show will always be different and about whatever they throw my way. Last week, the narrator of the show was a villain. I never thought that would happen, but I said “yes” to what they gave me and even though I was nervous about having a “scary-evil character” at the helm of the story, the kids loved it and it allowed me to truly be in the moment. I even wound up taking a poop (imaginary) on stage. They asked for it!

How does your kids version of the show differ from the adult version?

The adult version delves into themes of social anxiety, and I’ve reworked that very adult theme into “what are you scared of?” for the kids’ show. The setup, or the “why”, of the adult show is that I am out of material for my own life experiences, so I need to create a show using their junk. The setup of the kids show is that the main act didn’t show up and I am tasked to entertain the audience, having zero knowledge of what kids like. So far, it’s been working.

They say never work with animals or children – have you had any situations at your show where this statement has been true?

I do have a kid get up on stage at one point early in the show and as far as I can tell, it’s always one of the most magical and hilarious parts. I don’t want to give too much away, but let’s just say that some kids are just too comfortable being on stage and it’s not easy to get them back to their seat. I also have a joke in the show about spider monkeys and don’t think I haven’t considered actually getting one to appear in the show once I have a bigger budget…and insurance.

What other acts are you looking forward to seeing at the Fringe?

I really want to see other family shows. Which is going to be tricky since so many of them are around the same time of day. I love Martin Mor’s work and will be seeing his show on my day off. Will probably catch the latest “Princess Pumpalot” as well. And of course, I will be seeing and performing at a few “Huggers” shows hosted by my buddies Dave Chawner and Nik Coppin.

Have you done the Fringe before? What have been some of your favourite shows to date and why?

This is my fifth EdFringe and I’ve happily worked with Laughing Horse/Free Festival each time. I can’t say which shows have been my favourites because I can’t even decide on a favourite color, song, or food. I am bad with faves.

What have been some of the most unique and different improv sets you have seen this year and why?

I’ve seen amazing and entertaining improvised musicals, which is something that terrifies me. Improvising is hard enough. But, performers singing and dancing and rhyming while improvising is something I am in awe of.

If people want to find out more about you where can they follow you on social media?

On Twitter @blackoutpete and on Facebook at

And Finally in three words – Why should people come and see the show? 

To laugh uproariously.


Best thing about performing at the fringe?

Being surrounded by such an open and welcoming audience.


The most challenging thing about performing at the fringe? 

The heat. And the rain. And not knowing if anyone will show up.

What three items are essential for a successful Fringe? 

Backpack. Umbrella. Snacks.

What’s the secret to successful flyering? 

Eye contact and patience.

What are the best venue’s at the fringe?

The ones where you feel welcomed the moment you get there.


{ photo credit for the feature photo : Mikiodo }

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