The assumption that laughter is a dish best served drunk is being challenged. Meanwhile, Mark Thomas baits Ian Rankin and Gráinne Maguire elects to go politicalHalf past four is cooler than 7.30. DiscussFringe convention used to demand that comedy was an evening business – and that the biggest and best acts played in that 7.30-10pm hotspot, when most people, presumably, want to be watching their comedy. That doesn’t hold true so much anymore – but timeslot and status are still intricately entwined. It can be revealing to parse the schedules for what they say about an act’s status, or their priorities. There’s a new(ish) trend, for example, for the artier acts to appear in the morning or afternoon – significantly, the parts of the day more associated with theatre. Stewart Lee could presumably have any slot he wants, but he chooses 4.25pm – which keeps out the tanked-up fraternity, and advertises his alternative credentials. His wife, Bridget Christie, performs at the ill-favoured standup hour of 11.10am – which is as eccentric as her act. Christie and Lee have children, which may be another factor in their scheduling. The afternoon gig is often favoured by old troopers, as if to …read more

Via: The Guardian | Books