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Fringe Q&As: Vikki Stone

Vikki Stone talks to the Herald about strange heckles, why she loves Scotland, and being pushed across the stage on a ride-on camel playing the piccolo.

1 Tell us about your Fringe show

Back in February I had this great idea that I would create a stand-up show live underscored with twenty musical instruments. It's the hardest thing I've ever attempted, but I figured, as artists, we have to try things that might fail, things that teeter on the edge, otherwise we'll never put ourselves in the path of being able to create something truly original. I'm not going to lie, it was a idiotic thing have attempted, but hey, that's what the fringe is all about.

2 Best thing about the Fringe?

It's like being at school. All your mates are here, and every few minutes I bump into someone I know. Comedy is a lonely business, and the fringe is the one part of the year where we can all get together and see each other.

3 Worst thing about the Fringe?

The pressure. I wish I was around in the old days, where you could just come to the fringe and mess around under the radar. You can't mess around, when it costs so much money to put on a show.

4 How many years have you been coming to the Fringe?

This is my fourth year as a comedian, with my own show, but I first performed at the fringe in 1998 with the National Youth Music Theatre.

5 Favourite Fringe venue?

I like playing the Udderbelly, but I equally like some of the more intimate rooms too. My current one is a little on the damp side, and if you leave any equipment touching a wall overnight, it's covered in mould by the morning, but hey, that's the fringe.

6 Best Fringe memory?

My first year. To do this all for the first time was simultaneously so exhilarating and terrifying.

7 Best heckle?

I was doing an Edinburgh preview in a pub at the Holt Festival last month, and there was a thin wall separating the pub from the function room where the preview was. A punter took umbrage with the fact that I was disturbing his drinking time, so kept on banging through the wall and shouting. It was odd to have to deal with a heckler that wasn't even in the same room as you!

8 Craziest on stage experience?

I often have audience participation in my shows, so every show would have a new crazy experience. It's hard to pick one out, when you've made an audience member push you across the stage on a ride-on camel wearing a leotard, playing the piccolo.

9 What's on your rider?

My rider is INSANE, and I don't mean in a 'please put fresh doves in my dressing room' kind of way. Because of all the instruments, and loop pedals and other stuff, my technical rider is three pages long, and I'm pretty sure you don't want to print that.

10 How do you wind down after a show?

Usually by packing all my equipment away in a panic, and rushing off to do another gig. There's a fab pool at The Scotsman Hotel, that do temporary memberships for the festival, and that's where I do my unwinding in the day times.

Scotland

11 What do you love about Scotland?

I've got family in Scotland, so it's nice to spend a month being able to see them regularly.

12 What do you like about Edinburgh?

The city. It's gorgeous. One of my favourite cities in the world.

13 What's the most Scottish thing you've done?

Well, my brother married a Scottish lass, and his wedding was the most Scottish thing I've ever seen. Castle. Bagpipes. Kilts. Haggis. SuBo.

Jokes

14 What kind of jokes do a Scottish crowd seem to respond to?

The same as any other crowd: good ones.

15 Favourite joke?

My hair at the moment.

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