If variety shows are the bread and butter of cabaret, you’ll be spoiled for choice with a feast of burlesque, musical comedy, circus and magic in the 2012 Edinburgh Festival Fringe. All over town and around the clock, British and international artists will take to every stage available for multi-act bills hosted by the sassy compères ready to work you into a frantic good time.
Take your pick, grab a drink, find a seat and watch a parade of vaudevillians unfold before you. The fun is about to start.
Best of the Fest Variety
2-5, 9-12, 16, 18-19, 23-26 August, 23:59. Assembly George Square (Venue 3, Edinburgh EH8 9LH). £12-15
Hosted by Miss Behave at Assembly’s new Spiegeltent Teatro. With Up and Over it, Bourgeois and Maurice, Agent Lynch, Frank Sanazi, EastEnd Cabaret and others.
The Bongo Club Cabaret
4-5, 10-12, 17-19, 24-26 August, 22:00. The Bongo Club (Venue 143, Edinburgh EH8 8BA). £10-12 (£8-10 concessions)
Edinburgh’s pioneering revue is back in its 14th year, with an extended line-up on Sundays: five hours of variety.
Boom Boom Club
8-19, 21-26 August, 0:30. Underbelly Cowgate (Venue 61, Edinburgh EH1 1EG). £13.50-15.50 (£12.50-14.50 concessions)
The groundbreaking London show makes its Fringe debut with three rooms of vaudevillian fun atop Underbelly Cowgate.
2-27 August, 23:55. C Nova (Venue 145, Edinburgh EH1 1EX). £5.50-7.50 (£4.50-6.50 concessions)
Edinburgh’s newest venue kicks off its inaugural season with jazz, burlesque and speciality acts, plus a retro after-party. Acts include Sarah Jones, Damsel Sophie, The Oxford Gargoyles and The London Gay Men’s Chorus Ensemble.
Chaz Royal’s Sexy Circus Sideshow
1-5, 7-12, 14-19, 21-26 August, 23:45. Assembly George Square (Venue 3, Edinburgh EH8 9LH). £8-13 (£8.50-12 concessions)
The London Burlesque Fest producer brings his celebrated variety showcase to Edinburgh for the first time. Confirmed acts include Cat Aclysmic, Anna the Hulagan, Joe Black and The Monsters of Schlock.
Club Noir Burlesque
11 August, 21:00. HMV Picture House (Venue 265, Edinburgh EH1 2DJ). £21
The Fringe’s traditional six-hour one-night stand comes back with an Olympic theme.
2-12, 14-19, 21-26 August, 22:40. Assembly George Square (Venue 3, Edinburgh EH8 9LH). £10-15 (£10-13 concessions)
Australian revue alternating stand-up comics and burlesque dancers.
Kabarett Alternative Variety Revue
4-7, 9-14, 16-21, 23-25 August, 19:15. The Voodoo Rooms (Venue 68b, Edinburgh EH2 2AA). Free
Edgy variety showcase organised by Edinburgh producer Dee Itsy. Confirmed guests include Will Hodgson, Velma Von Bon Bon and the Creative Martyrs. From the same producers of Midnight Kabarett.
La Clique Royale
3-5, 7-12, 14-19, 21-26 August, 21:30. The Famous Spiegeltent (Venue 87, Edinburgh EH2 2LR). £20 (£17 concessions)
The seminal circus show is back in Edinburgh where it started, with a Jubilee-themed spectacle.
Lili la Scala – Another Fucking Variety Show
2-12, 14-19, 21-26 August, 23:00. Pleasance Dome (Venue 23, Edinburgh EH8 9AL). £5-10.50 (£8.50-9.50 concessions)
Yep, another one. Hosted by the operatic burlesque diva with guests like Mat Ricardo, Abi Collins and The Boy With Tape on His Face.
Magic Faraway Cabaret
4-12, 14-25 August, 22:50. The Voodoo Rooms (Venue 68b, Edinburgh EH2 2AA). Free
Hosted by Dave the Bear, Claire Benjamin and Mister Meredith.
Marcel Lucont: Cabaret Fantastique
10, 17, 24 August, 23:59. Assembly George Square (Venue 3, Edinburgh EH8 9LH). £12.50
A night of comedy, burlesque and magic. Three dates only.
4-7, 9-14, 16-18, 20-21, 23-26 August, 0:00. The Voodoo Rooms (Venue 68b, Edinburgh EH2 2AA). Free
Dee Itsy’s traditional free late-night alternative variety haunt returns for its fourth year at the Fringe. From the same producers of Kabarett Alternative Variety Revue.
Vive le Cabaret
3-5 August, 22:45. Pleasance Courtyard (Venue 33, Edinburgh EH8 9TJ). £10-12 (£8-10 concessions)
Another cabaret institution of the Fringe, back for three nights only.
1-5, 7-12, 14-19, 21-26 August, 20:15. The Voodoo Rooms (Venue 68a, Edinburgh EH2 2AA). £5-10
Mat Ricardo brings his acclaimed London Varieties showcase to the Fringe, with his unusual mix of vaudeville, video projections and live interviews onstage.