Edinburgh Fringe: Harriet Braine interview

2016 Funny Women Award winner, So You Think You’re Funny? Finalist and Musical Comedy Awards Best Newcomer Harriet Braine presents her debut hour of funny songs about the great and good of the art world.

AAA caught up with Harriet for chat in between shows.

How has your Fringe been so far?

Very nice. It’s been really exciting, I’ve met some of my absolute heroes, and had very receptive audiences at my shows. That rhymes!

Tell us a bit about the show you’re in?

Total Eclipse of the Art is a musical comedy show about artists and art history. A sort of mix of high and low-brow that somehow works really well.

What’s the audience reaction been so far?

Very positive! They have been well behaved (one of the perks of a lunchtime slot), very attentive and good at laughing. ‘A’ star grades all round!

Do you read your reviews? Do negative ones bother you?

I do. I’m too curious about what they say. Maybe in a few years I will stop caring much about them, but these are the first reviews I’m getting! Having said that, I don’t get too bothered about negative ones, as I don’t have a massive ego, really. I like to take well thought-out feedback on board even if it’s negative. If it’s negative in a thoughtless or personal way, then there’s no point getting bothered as it’s obviously the critic’s problem, not mine.

There’s thousands of shows on – why should Fringe-goers fork out to see yours?

They don’t have to fork out, for one thing! It’s a free show (with caveats, obviously). They should come along because they won’t see another show like it. It’s irreverent but you still learn something if you pay attention! If 1.15pm is too early in the day to pay attention, then just tap your feet and enjoy the dulcet tones of my tiny guitar. Which, by the way, is NOT a ukelele. I want to make that very clear.

Are there any other shows on this year you’d recommend?

‘Douze’ by Xnthony and the Penny Slots is very funny, and Mitch Benn’s show is great. Rob Kemp’s The Elvis Dead is also pretty hilarious. That concept is so up my street.

What’s on your hit list to see?

When the going gets Duff, by Helen Duff, Lady Muck by Lauren Pattison, Theatre Paradok’s Bare Threads…I’m definitely going to see Larry Dean and Adam Kay… so many things on the list!

What do you like to do in Edinburgh on your day off?

This is extremely weather-dependent. I’d love to go to Portobello beach and sit in the sun. If it’s raining then I’ll catch up on all the TV I’ve missed. Either way I always plan to eat Mexican food that day. Might as well be happy and gassy on one’s day off.

Do you agree with those who say the Fringe has become too big?

Not really? How big is ‘too big’? Who decides? It is quite big, though, I’ll give you that.

Can you recommend a bar or restaurant in Edinburgh?

Viva Mexico. 10 to 10 in Delhi. Tupiniquim crepe stand. Indaba. Hendersons. Mama’s Pizza. I swear Edinburgh has the best food in the world. I’m trying not to drink too much so I shan’t recommend a bar… except anywhere that sells Thistly Cross cider. Can’t get enough of that stuff.

What’s the strangest thing you’ve seen in Edinburgh this year?

The people who get the night bus with me back to Leith.

Sell your show in no more than ten words

The people of Buxton gave it an award. Trust them.

Harriet Braine – Total Eclipse of the Art, Laughing Horse @ The Golf Tavern, until August 27 (not 14), www.edfringe.com

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