Fringe interview: Sid Singh

Silicon Valley dominates the news with the richest man in the world (Jeff Bezos), a website that helped spread fake news and swing a presidential election (Facebook), and a future presidential candidate (Mark F*cking Zuckerberg). Join Silicon Valley native Sid Singh, fresh off his best-selling comedy album Amazing! Probably, returning to Edinburgh to take down Silicon Valley’s toxic tech culture. From tech’s invasion into our personal lives, to the rampant sexism and racism that festers behind closed doors, the world of tech has never been more problematic or more powerful.

This isn’t your first time at the Fringe…

It’s my fifth!

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

I’ve spent the last three years being stuck in Silicon Valley watching Tech Companies change laws and ruin the place that I grew up in. In that way I find a way to take a personal approach to discuss a global problem. More importantly, I make it funny.

How much work has gone into getting it ready for Edinburgh?

A lot. I removed all the jokes from my album (Amazing Probably!, you can listen to it for free now on Spotify) and started over. I tried to perform as often as I could, ideally two or three shows a night, and keep crafting the jokes so that they felt still raw emotionally, but polished functionally.

Are you nervous ahead of your opening night?

Yes. This is completely unlike any other show I’ve done. I’ve always prided myself on doing honest comedy where all of my jokes came from truth while still holding to a New York style of comedy – i.e. I’d do 60 minutes of jokes. This year, I’m trying to do my first one-man show. It’s a super new experience and I’m nervous and excited to see how it goes.

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

Because I can back up my comedy with expertise. I’ve been doing comedy for almost 10 years and have a show about tech ruining the city and screwing over many of the people who live there. You don’t have to have worked in tech or been the head of the homeless legal services to have an opinion on that, but luckily I’ve done both and I want to talk about it. Who else can say that?

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

Yeah so many! Watch Droll from the Owle Schreame Theatre, watch Dan Audritt’s first ever hour, watch Jamie Oliphant do the same, Rahul Kohli, Tamar Broadbent, Eshaan Akbar, Alex Kealy, Aatif Nawaz, and Peter Marino are all also amazing performers that you’re better off having seen.

What’s on your hit-list to see?

Outside of the shows above, I really just like walking around and being convinced by flyerers. The Fringe is a magical place that exposes you to so much, I’d always recommend having as open a mind as you can.

What are you planning to do on your days off?

I don’t really have a day off. The Fringe is such a wonderful experience that I get too nervous to miss a thing and want to do as much as I can. I’m doing a minimum of three shows a day (in addition to my one man show, I’m also doing improv at 3:45pm at Harry’s Southside and a stand up contest/gameshow called The Rule of 3 at 12:30 am at The Three Sisters.) I think there is one day when I have two shows instead of three. I’ll probably sleep from exhaustion… unless I can be a guest on another show 😉

Sid Singh: American Bot, Just the Tonic at The Mash House (Cask House), 2-26 August, 6.25pm, www.edfringe.com

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