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The Edinburgh Festival - what a laugh

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Andy Hall | 15:26 UK time, Friday, 27 August 2010

For the past four days I've battled against the rain, managed to collect at least 100 unwanted flyers and laughed so much that I'm finding it hard to chew.

Last Monday I arrived at the Edinburgh Festival with Richard Bacon. The show came live from various locations and unlike last year Richard wasn't tempted to do any stand-up comedy (although Reginald D Hunter wouldn't let Richard forget about his attempt).

Richard Bacon on the Royal Mile

We began the week broadcasting from the heart of the festival walking through the Royal Mile (when I say walk, I actually mean dodge) with author Ian Rankin and comedians Adam Hills and Sarah Millican who confessed how Twitter had taken over their lives. You can see their confession in the video.

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Monday saw the start of some rather strange food related 'banter'. Richard commented on-air how he was finding it difficult to find some fruit whilst he was in Scotland. With 30 minutes of the show remaining a random cyclist, dressed in lycra performed a drive-by apple-off on Ian Rankin (what I'm trying to say is that a bag of apples was planted into the paws of Ian Rankin rather quickly and unexpectedly) who was rather pleased and tucked in whilst we were on-air.

On Tuesday we originally planned to come live from the biggest beer garden in Edinburgh at the Peartree pub. However, we were defeated by the rain and had to go inside. This didn't seem to bother our guests, although Richard Herring informed us that this was the first Edinburgh Festival he had performed at without touching a drop. You can watch Richard Herring and Phil Jupitus talking about their shows here.

The surprise of the show came when we received a text message from a listener who was actually in the pub; she wanted to ask comedian Rhod Gilbert why he was performing the same show as the previous year. Richard decided to track her down so she could ask Rhod face to face. Watch the video below to see what happened.

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Wednesday and Thursday saw a change of format. We invited an audience to watch the broadcast live at the McEwan Hall. We were joined by comedians Reginald D Hunter, Chris Addison and John Bishop who gave Richard some fashion advice.

Wednesday also saw the second incident involving food. On Tuesday Richard told Phil Jupitus how he'd never had a good salad in Scotland. This comment was obviously taken to heart because out of the shadows emerged a chef with a plate full of fresh salad and seafood.

The 'salad'

But it wasn't all about the comedy. We also spoke to Scottish First Minister, Alex Salmond who defended the Scottish Justice system's release of Abdelbaset Ali al-Megrahi.
There was also a live performance from Five Guys Named Moe and live music from The Stormy Seas who played 'Middle Man' and The Coral who sang She's Coming Around and 1000 Years. Watch the performance of 1000 Years below.

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I was also armed with a stills camera and you can see all of our Edinburgh photos here.

The Edinburgh Festival provided us with some really entertaining radio, some superb comedy, an aching jaw and two of our five a day.

Thank you Edinburgh


  • Comment number 1.

    The three Edinburgh Festival blogs remind of the advice for giving a presentation - "tell them what you're going to tell them, tell them, then tell them what you've told them".

  • Comment number 2.

    Glad you enjoyed yourself

  • Comment number 3.

    "Andy Hall is an interactive producer for BBC Radio 5 live" - is all the twitter and text content your fault Andy?

  • Comment number 4.

    He has written a column in the Sun today to tell us all this stuff yet again. So he has a great holiday, does loads of stuff at my expense, then re-sells the same guff for the Sun. It is amazing how much you can wring out of a few days with your mates Addison, Hunter et al.

  • Comment number 5.

    I thought it was a very entertaining week of radio. Well done, Richard, and everyone concerned.

  • Comment number 6.

    You thought it was a laugh ? I thought it was appalling !

  • Comment number 7.

    Oh yes I found Bacon and his guests so side splittingly funny.I had to pay a visit to my doctor because my jaw was aching through laughing so much.Tears rolled down my face as I pondered ......how on earth does Richard Bacon get to be on national radio ?

  • Comment number 8.

    I wonder why there is not a blog post plugging the ‘big event’ – Blair v Bacon this afternoon. It seems strange that he was asking for questions on Twitter Friday, August 27:

    “Imagine, hypothetically, if I were to have Tony Blair coming into my radio show next week. You can ask him ONE question. What is it?”

    “Can you email some of your (hypothetical) questions for Tony Blair on email too? It's bacon@bbc.co.uk. Just one qu, what do you ask?”

    Yet on Wednesdays show he said he had a big interview on Thursday but can’t reveal who – Muppet don’t tweet about it if then.

  • Comment number 9.

    Bacon was himself interviewed about this afternoon, by Tony Livesey. Talk about filling your programmes with your own people. And he has written an article about it too. I could care less about all of it, and as for the phone in - I made a point which appeared on the Connect page.

    Hasit, where are you, by the way? I haven't asked today. How do you type the noise you make when you snort?

  • Comment number 10.

    Carrie my meaning was there have been three posts about Bacon in Edinburgh you would have thought Hasit would have taken the opportunity to resurface with a fourth Bacon post.

    Bacon has again been on Colin Murray this lunchtime saying it was all secretive, he was embargoed not to reveal he was interviewing Blair etc until today but the halfwit tweets about it last Friday.

    My contributions never appear on the Connect page :-(

  • Comment number 11.

    Blair looks like a mad man in that pic with Bacon. So Bacon was on Murray, etc etc. I honestly can't see why they need guests, just appear on each other's shows yattering would do.


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