Edinburgh comedy notebook

Stephanie Merritt, The Guardian August 16th, 2011


Comedy Club 4 Kids at the Bongo Club has been a highlight for children at the fringe in recent years, giving them a taste of some of the biggest names in comedy at the fringe, with the fun, rowdy feel of a real comedy club.

Past lineups have included Stewart Lee, Jason Byrne, David O’Doherty and Adam Hills, and it’s always interesting to see how comics adapt their material for kids, and to see those who can get a laugh without falling back on the toilet jokes. (Some do look quite lost when they realise they can’t swear at hecklers.)

This week we enjoyed Mark Thomas bringing a kids’ version of his successful People’s Manifesto, where children in the audience suggested policies that would make their world a better place and then voted on the winner. “No school and no rules,” were the most popular choices, though my particular favourite was “all buildings should be based on bananas”.

One child had written: “I should rule the world and have all the money.” “Always nice to have Tories in,” Thomas quipped, and some of the kids actually laughed, proving that you’re never too young for a bit of satire.

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