FRONT OF HOUSE
Everything you wanted to know about the Edinburgh Festival, but were too afraid to ask
No pain, no gain?
Mutilation, degradation and body modification. It all used to be in a day’s work for a freak show. Are the things changing?
OVER AT THE freak cage, a nasty spat seems to have been engineered between John Kamikaze of the Kamikaze Freak Show and Jim Rose of The Jim Rose Circus Show, with each accusing the other of faking it.
Neither of them, however, is showing too much stomach for a fight: Jim Rose’s PR is suggesting that since appearing on The X-Fi/es and The Simpsons, Rose is now less of a pain-hungry freakmaster and more of a 20th century cultural icon, a symbol of all that is misunderstood, a man who has turned his back on mutilation and sado-masochism. As for Kamikaze, it looks as though he had to be goaded somewhat before he would badmouth Rose.
The List, as usual, would not like to stir up further trouble so rather than repeating past insults we asked both artistes to tell us about their shows. Here’s the highlights: Rose boasts woman sumo wrestlers Gale Force: Large Marge and, weighing in at 4041le, Kathy ’The Pile Driver’ Wilson. According to Rose, 'these women are such athletes that they don’t even want to be hindered by wearing a top.’ Quite. Meanwhile, Rose’s wife, Bebe the Circus queen, has a turn blowing fire from her beaver. Highlight of the show is probably the Mexican transvestite wrestling, which Rose describes as ’an old Mexican
tradition. It’s a no holes barred, fudge- packing, grudge match.’
John Kamikaze promises that his show is going to be ’much more over the top than last year’ which is a sobering thought. Leading the line-up is Powertool, whose name explains his act; a porno dwarf and of course Kamikaze himself, who drags the heaviest member of his audience around the stage by hooks through his back. Yum.
We’re not going to decide who’s hardest. Surely the only way to settle this once and for all is to lock the two of them in a room with a variety of props and see which one tortures himself to death first. The opportunity for one- upmanship would be limited only by the gruesome twosome’s vivid imaginations. Kamikaze, or the Prince of Pain as he is sometimes named, is well known for sticking firecrackers up his arse and lighting them. Jim Rose on the other hand is infamous for his organ origami; could Rose go one better by using his lunchpack as a launch pad for a roman candle? Would he want to?
l The New Jim Rose Circus (Fringe) Palladium (Venue 26) 557 2700, until 30 Aug (not Mons) 7pm, £8. 50 (£6.50). Kamikaze Freakshow (Fringe) Assembly Rooms (Venue 3) 226 2428, until 30 Aug (not Tue) 7 7.30pm, f7 (f6).
Jim Rose and chums
John Kamikaze hangs around
Stephane Sednaoui is a busy man. As well as single- handedly destroying the EU vowel mountain using just his surname, the man is also one of the world's most successful pop promo film directors, responsible for Bjork's ‘Big Time Sensuality’, U2's ’Pop' and the Chili
10 THE usr 8—14 Aug 1997
Pepper’s ’Give It Away'. While music and film buffs are holding their breath for his appearance at the Film Festival's Mirrorball series, the tabloids are panting in anticipation that he will bring his girlfriend, a certain Ms Kylie Minogue. Given that Kylie once courted Michael Hutchence, what are the odds on Sednaoui ever directing an INXS video?
The King Elvis Presley can be spotted, sadly not alive and well, at an exhibition called Elvis Experience — The Early Years at the Hospitality Inn Crown Plaza on the Royal Mile. Over £3 million worth of jewellery, uniforms, film clothes and assorted personal items will be on display including a pair of tasteful white buck-skin shoes with a gold band around the heel, complete. with, this isn't really worth waiting for, pivot marks on the sole. Of particular interest, to the Diary’s stomach at least, is the 505 style Elvis diner which is annexed to the exhibition. The King's favourite snack was a baguette sliced in half, lathered with a jar of jelly and a jar of peanut butter before being topped off with two pounds of fried pig. Will the diner be serving King-sized snacks?
Kylie kitless, almost