Camden Fringe Festival 2021

Camden Fringe 2021 – INTERVIEW – Chuck Salmon: Pool Noodles, Camden People’s Theatre

This summer we are very lucky to see some of life return to normal and one of the things that is coming back with a bang this year is Camden Fringe! We have spoke to a number of acts that you can go and see on the actual stage, so if you have missed comedy and theatre then this is a great time for you! If you are planning on going to the festival though please pre-book your tickets to avoid disappointment. Today we are talking to a sketch group all about their show –  Chuck Salmon: Pool Noodles 

Date: 27th – 29th August
Time: 9pm
Location: Camden People’s Theatre


Hello! Tell us about yourself and the show Pool Noodles that you are  bringing to Camden fringe? 

Hiya! I’m Alex, sometimes comedian and one of the three people (the others being Noah and Will) behind the sketch group Chuck Salmon and also the creation of ‘Pool Noodles’ – our debut comedy sketch show following a young boy as he follows his aspirations to become the world’s greatest lifeguard!

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

Honestly we had hundreds of names, most of them bad; ‘What We Do in the Shallow End’, ‘Slippery When Wet’, ‘The Drownhouse’, ‘Derren Drown (as in famous mentalist Derren Brown)’, ‘Chocolate Log in the Lazy River’ – we ended up on Pool Noodles because it’s the most visually recognisable image, and because it was the best of the worst.

#Tell us a little bit about your style of show?

Frenetic, fast-paced, energetic – a bunch of energy adjectives. It’s a narrative sketch show where we try to cram in as many jokes, and creative ideas as absolutely possible.

What will your set be about?

Our story follows Kenny Shallows, a kid who has always dreamt of being a poolside lifeguard; but when he finally gets a place at the lifeguarding school of his dreams, he finds he is a small fish in a big pond – until he hears about the lifeguarding elixir!

In order to achieve his dreams Kenny must overcome backstroking bullies, ghost-filled golf courses, and several metric tons of water, in order to become the greatest lifeguard the world has ever seen.

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

Honestly too many to name as everyone is so amazingly funny but to pick a few personal faves:

Ted Hill: All the President’s Man

Rhiannon Shaw: Emptier Nest

Ania Magliano: Absolutely No Worries If Not (WIP)

Jacob Hatton: Futurist

Genuinely check them out, they’re all incredible!

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

So we’ve never done Camden Fringe before, but we have done Leicester and Brighton (just did it!), and we’ve all done Edinburgh before, if with different respective shows!

In 2018 Tom Walker did a show called Bee Boo and I don’t think I’ve ever laughed so hard in my life; also there was a show called Bruce: Just an Ordinary Astronaut Sponge from Tim Watts and Wyatt Nixon-Lloyd which was told with the puppetry of a piece of sofa sponge that I still can’t get out of my head. Also in the non-comedy category there was a show called Electrolyte by Wildcard Theatre that made me explore emotional depths as deep as the Mariana Trench.

How has the last year in lockdown been for you?

 I decided to pass the time away with mindless tasks – in recent news, I am now really good at chess, and way too good for my age at League of Legends. 

Have you managed to do many online shows?

 As a group we didn’t do many; it’s hard to convince gig organisers to give one hour to a narrative sketch comedy show in their mixed-bill night mostly made up of tight fives. Separately we’ve done some though; I think I did one zoom gig where one of the audience I’m fairly certain was working as a chef, while on the call, in what looked like a fairly intensive high-end kitchen.

And now you are returning to the stage!!! How exciting! What are you looking forward to the most?

Having a crowd who laughs again, as opposed to the crowds we’ve had over lockdown who have mostly been concerned about vaccines (famously not a fun group) or the football (it was a sad day for England indeed).

what advice would you give to others who want to perform at Camden Fringe next year?

Redraft your show at least 10 times before you apply (so we don’t feel so bad about having to redraft ours so much – also it’s probably a good idea regardless).

What is the best thing about performing at the Camden fringe?

We live round the corner, making this effectively the closest place we will ever perform to home, and I could not be happier about it.

What are your three favourite things about Camden?

  1. The Canal (as a pool-based lifeguard show we’re big fans of all water)
  2. Blues Kitchen (Huge fan)
  3. Camden Town Station (very useful)

Favourite one liner you have done in a show and why?

(In relation to Kenny Shallows being asked to clean a floor): I want that floor so shiny that I can see the ceiling in it. I want to be completely disorientated. Like a werewolf on the moon.

Who would be your ultimate dream audience member?

A person with one hundred friends, all of whom always hang out as one big group.

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?

Tony Hawk due to his cool skateboarding skills and being a bird.

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

We have a website at www.chucksalmon.com!

We’re also on Twitter: https://twitter.com/chuckle_salmon

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/chucksalmoncomedy/

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC7eRCjzlmoXTAo0rrhLlamA

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/chuckle.salmon/

And TikTok: @chucksalmoncomedy

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

Really quite good.

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