It is festival season and that means that in the next month there is so many great comedy festivals to look forward to! This month we are looking at some of the great shows that you can see at the Camden Fringe. So take note because we are going to give you all the information you need for just a handful of some of the great shows happening this year!
Laugh Island / Improv Deathmatch
Location: Canal Cafe Theatre / Aces And Eights
Dates: August 9th, 10th 11th / August 9th, 10th, 16, 17th
Price: £10 concession £8 / £5
Hello! Tell us about City Impro?
We are an improvised comedy group based in London that formed just over 6 years ago. We’ve gone through a few line-up changes over the years, but our style of past-faced and high energy games and scenes is still the same.
How did you come up with the name of your show that your taking to the Camden fringe?
For Improv Deathmatch we thought of a bunch of words that evoked fierce competition and something which sounded high stakes (which is the complete opposite of what the show is). The word Deathmatch was perfect, and it also sounds epic when you say it.
Laugh Island came about by wanting to do a show based on Love Island but where contestants got together because of how funny they were. The show title pretty much made itself by substituting Love for Laugh. Should the show make it to the West-End, I think we will tell everyone that the title was months in the making and involved focus groups and lots of test marketing!
Tell us a little bit about your style of show?
Both of our shows are based around games and scenes. Improv Deathmatch is fast paced, high energy and is competitive. The show is made to feel like you are watching sport in a stadium and we get the audience cheering and jeering.
Laugh Island is a bit slower and has some narrative between each of the games. The show is set up so the audience are watching the pilot episode of the Laugh Island TV show and we are hoping to get a commission from ITV Be+1
What will your set be about?
Improv Deathmatch is a competition between two teams, where at first the teams play games by themselves, before the teams then play games together. Team accumulate points which go towards the amount of time they have in the final round where anything goes and the audience decides the winner.
Laugh Island is our take on Love Island, but instead of looks being the thing that causes people to get together, instead it’s all about how funny people are that creates our couples (and hopefully keeps them together).
What other acts are you looking forward to seeing at the fringe?
We’re looking forward to seeing the Parentheticals show “Improdyssey” again this year, they are a fantastic group and are a mainstay of the Camden Fringe – mainly because their show is so good. Another show we’re excited about is the Descendents with “Last week tonight”, it is a great show and the cast is full of talented improvisers who are incredibly watchable. A shout out should also go to Clusterfox, another fabulous group and their new show “Wake Up, Sheeple!”.
Non-improv shows we’re looking forward to seeing include Steve McNeil: Video Games, the Eurosceptic Song Contest and Faye Treacy is a Work in Progress.
Have you done the fringe before? What have been some of your favourite shows to date and why?
This will be our fifth Camden Fringe in a row (our Improv Deathmatch show is the longest running show at the Camden Fringe). It was our first ever Fringe show and is still our favourite. My favourite show was a Saturday night back in 2017 where whilst we were introducing the last game an audience member stuck their hand up and pointed out that those on stage could cheat by using the mirrors around the venue. The look on the cast’s faces in not ever having spotting this huge flaw had the whole room in stitches.
What have been some of the most unique and different shows you have seen this year and why?
A show I loved earlier in the year was a circus show called Transit. It was a clown show by a group based in Quebec (who aren’t Cirque du Soleil). It featured amazing circus skills by all the performers, including an incredible ending with hundreds of balls on a trampoline and the cast then doing trampoline tricks as well. The show also had a really nice story around that brought it all together.
What advice would you give to others who want to perform at Camden Fringe next year?
Make a show that you would want to go and see and then find a way of putting that across in your pitches to venues and in your marketing materials.
What is the best thing about performing at the Camden fringe?
Aside from the costs being low (there’s no need to pay for accommodation for a start), I love that audiences at the Camden Fringe are really willing to give anything a go, so you tend to get people who only usually go and see stand up come along and be part of the audience. I also really like the vibe that seems to be developing in that it is an alternative for people to going up to Edinburgh for a month.
What are your three favourite things about Camden?
Camden market, the food and the British Museum.
Favourite one liner you have done in a show and why?
It’s not a joke, but my favourite one liner I love to ask audiences to shout out when warming them up before we start the show is somewhere they’d take someone on a first date. I’ve had answers covering the creepy “my house”, the extravagant when someone shouted out “To Malaysia” to the rather sweet “To this show”.
Who would be your ultimate dream audience member?
Donald Trump – A tweet from him after seeing our show would be great to put on our posters as a quote, and we’re not quite sure he’d understand we were making everything up!
The iconic image of the Camden Fringe is the Pigeon – if you could call this years pigeon a name to represent its style what would it be and why?
Liz – I think it looks quite regal, but coming from Camden it would call itself Liz rather than Elizabeth.
If people want to find out more about you where can they follow you on social media?
We’re @cityimpro on Twitter and Instagram and you can find us on Facebook with /CityImpro. Some of us are on Tinder where you can swipe right on us.
And Finally in three words – Why should people come and see the show?
Lots of Laughs.