Chatter and verse

Performance poet John Hegley talks chocolate, Australians and Jimmy Hill.

He’s a trooper, John Hegley. Happy to talk showbiz while entertaining his daughter, our chat begins with a brief but lively discourse with three-year-old Isabella.

'She’s stuck something on the wall,’ explains dad. ‘lt's a penny.’

’lt's a chocolate,’ counters Hegley junior.

‘It's not a chocolate, love, it’s a penny. It's rounder.’

’lt’s not a penny, it’s a chocolatel'

’Okay,’ sighs Hegley. ’It's a chocolate. Sometimes you have to agree with delusional children.’

‘It’s a pretend chocolate!’

‘Absolutely. A pretend chocolate. It’s pretending to be a penny.’

Sadly, Isabella will have to wait a few more years for that Equity card. Until then, dad will have to rely on those fantastic rhyming schemes and, of course, his modest backing band (laconic sidekick-cum- guitarist Nigel).

'I lost my mandolin,’ he says dolefully.

It happens, The List responds in reassuring tones.

'I looked in the last place I left it, but it wasn’t even there,’ keens Hegley. 'So I’ve been playing guitar a lot. There’s a song I did with a rock band called Oxy and the Morons, which is a good name I think. We did a number with a lot of percussion in it about Jimmy Hill. Expect some football and more insights into personal relationships.’

Hegley's Edinburgh shows and his forthcoming Radio 4 series, Hearing With Hegley, will feature a mixture of tunes and poems; the subject matter ranging from the grafting of Jimmy Greaves’ beard onto Jimmy Hill's chin, to growing up in a Luton bungalow, and a fascination

theatre - dance 0 comedy

Rhyming schemer: John Hegley

for aeronautics. Not content with merely talking about planes during his New Zealand tour, Hegley took to treating his audience to flying balsa wood models. You know, the ones powered by elastic bands.

’There was something quite poetic about everybody seeing the flight of this thing rather than just watching it on your own,’ he recalls. ’It makes it more significant somehow.

’It was loosening,’ he says of his antipodean experience. 'And juicening. I got something from it. Hopefully the looseness and the juiceness will come to profuseness.’ (Rodger Evans)

3 For details, see Hit list, right.

Eyes down for a fool house: Bingo!

as part of the Amsterdam Parade mobile theatre festival.

Audiences will find a tent in the grounds of Cafe Graffiti transformed into a bingo palace, complete with flashing numbers, long tables and a bar. Even better, scoring a full house and winning pots of cash is always a possibility.

But Bingo! is also a drama the stOry of Ricardo Spagnoli, the Italian owner of a bingo palace, whose dreams of opening a dance hall are thwarted by incompetent staff, tricky customers, a meddling wife and the Mafia.

'This is not a regular theatre perfor- mance, it is more of a happening,’ understates Felix Strategier, who plays Spagnoli. 'You don’t often get a


Bingo is a game more associated with hordes of little old ladies zealously clutching magic markers and jealously

eyeing up each other’s numbers than with progressive theatre in young and thrusting Edinburgh. Out to change all that and give the numbers game a much needed hip replacement, Dutch performance group, De Gebroeders Flint, is bringing Bingo! to Edinburgh

situation in theatre where the audience can make money, so, as an actor, this is exciting. You can see the dollar signs in their eyes.’

Eyes down for Bingo! You might even make a profit. (Peter Ross) g For details, see Hit list, right.

8pm -10pm .


Piter Kay A well—observed, truthful,

funny show about the busmess of getting hitched. See reView on followmg pages. Peter Kay (Fringe) Pleasance (Venue 33) 556 6550, until 37 Aug, 9.35pm, [8.50/[750 (£7.50/[6.50).

Adolf A chilling, thrilling piece of old-school soapboxing. See rewew on followmg pages. Ado/f (Fringe) Company Theatre, Roman Eagle Lodge (Venue 2 7) 622 7207, until 37 Aug, 8.35pm, [6 (£4.50).

Ennio Marchetto Marchetto is an origami addict of the first order and his show is a unique delight. See review on following pages Ennio Marchetto (Fringe) Pleasance (Venue 33) 556 6550, unti/37 Aug (not 25) 8pm, £8. 50/17 50 (£7. 50/f6. 50).

Scared Weird Little Guys Straight outta Australia via Crazyville, the Scardies offer superlative musical comedy routines. See reView on following pages. Scared Weird Little Guys (Fringe) Spiege/tent (Venue 87) 558 8070/226 2757, until 37 Aug, 9pm, [8 (f 7).

Moscow Three gay men trapped in an abandoned theatre rehearsing Chekhov's Three Sisters is the unlikely premise for a terrific play- with-music. See reVIew on following pages. Moscow (Fringe) Randolph Studio (Venue 55) 225 5366, until 22 Aug, 9.35pm, £6.50 ([5).

The Lady Boys 0f Bangkok Get all Thai'd up at this great, camp female impersonator show. See review on following pages. Lady Boys Of Bangkok (Fringe) Big Top On The Meadows (Venue 789) 667 0202, until 29 Aug, 8. 75pm, [72.50/f70 (f 70/f8).

John Hegley See preView, left. John Hegley (Fringe) Observer Assembly (Venue 3) 226 2428, 27—29 Aug,

8. 70pm, [70/f9 (£9/f8).

Bingo! See preview, left. Bingo! (Fringe) The Amsterdam Parade, Graffiti (Venue 90) 55 7 8330, 2 7—37 Aug, 8.30pm, f 7. 50.

20-27 Aug i998 THE List 55