Wednesday, 20 July 2016

The Socks' First Gig / Worst Gig

Esteemed comedy website Chortle runs a feature where they ask comedians about their First Gigs, Worst Gigs etc. Here were our replies...

Chortle First Gig Worst Gig

First gig?
The Scottish Falsetto Socks first appeared as part of The Sitcom Trials (which is also on at Edinburgh this year, its Grand Final is August 23rd). Kev F (the writer) had written a couple of two handers that he didn't want the actors to bugger up. So he turned up at the writers meeting with socks on his hands and did a silly voice. A new act was born. (NB: ...then handed over to us, two actual socks who genuinely talk, and sing and all the rest).

Worst gig?
We once played in a bandstand at the Adelaide Fringe, to promote our show that night. The front of the stage got mobbed by 6 year old kids, all shouting "we can see your willy". This lasted for the whole 20 minute set. And was, we should also point out, factually inaccurate. It was mostly bollocks.

The weirdest gig?
If every act has had to perform on the dance floor of a night club where the lights were on a sound-to-light system so they flashed with every consonant you spoke, or done a gig full of 5 year olds after which the Mayor of Hartlepool (for there it was) received a letter of complaint stating that, because of us, a mother had had "to explain the word cock to my five year old", then we've done gigs no weirder than anyone else.

Favourite show, ever?
Every year we write a different one hour show, from Socks In Space the sci fi show, through the horror show Boo Lingerie, to last year's crime show Minging Detectives. Obviously we think this year's show ...Do Shakespeare is our favourite.

Is there one routine/gag you loved, that audiences inexplicably didn't?
Last year's 'Hello Muddah Intifada', a song sung by a British kid who's run off to join Islamic State seemed to divide the room. "I thought we'd be liberating, we do more de-capitating" was one of the lines you could call 'Marmite'.

Who's the most disagreeable comic/promoter/agent you've come across in the business?
One act, who shall remain nameless, was doing a show so popular at Edinburgh they needed extra slots, so they were given the slot before ours. Of course they didn't finish on time, cos they were so big and famous, so our get-in time came and went. Then the start time of our show passed too. We figured we'd help out the act after us by sneaking backstage and setting up props ready for a swift handover. So we ended up only starting 20 minutes late instead of 30. The next day I got a sniffy email from my venue's technical manager, not (as I expected) apologising for Starry McStarpants overrunning, but telling us off and threatening us with a fine for sneaking backstage during Star-Who-Had-Obviously-Reported-Us-To-Teacher's overlong set. I was well pleased when that jobsworth got sacked. Starry act remains popular with some people.

What's your best insider travel tip, for touring comics?
Greggs gives you gout. (Obviously run that one past the lawyers, maybe change it to Ginsters). Eating nothing but salty sludge in pastry is a very bad diet, but when you're looking for food after 11pm when all but late night petrol stations have shut, this is what'll happen.

The most memorable review, heckle or post-gig reaction?
We can't see the audience during the show (because we're blinded by the lights obviously, no other reason). So finding out you've had famous people in is fun. We've had Jack Straw in before now, luckily neither of us bombed that night.

How do you feel about where your career is at, right now?
As long as people keep coming to see us deliver our earnest attempts at serious art, which somehow get engulfed in a slurry of music hall routines and tortuous gags every time, we'll be happy. And we like to think they will be too.

The Scottish Falsetto Sock Puppet Theatre Do Shakespeare is at Gilded Balloon at the Edinburgh Fringe from 3rd - 29th August at 10.30pm. More info and tickets available at

The Scottish Falsetto Sock Puppet Theatre do Shakespeare at the Edinburgh Fringe August 2016 - see the previews in your town!

★★★★★ "Accessible, contemporary and ridiculous" - Brighton Argus May 2016
★★★★ "Eat your heart out, Olivier" - What's On May 2016 
★★★★ "Comedy genius at work" - Theatre Bath April 2016 

July 8 - Flavel, Dartmouth
July 10 - Tring Festival 
July 14 - Market Harborough Theatre
July 17 - Sheffield New Barrack Tavern 2pm

July 17 - Greater Manchester Fringe , Kings Arms Salford 7pm
July 21 - Barnes Fringe
July 22 - Bedford Fringe
July 28 - The Lansdown, Clifton, Bristol - NEW DATE ADDED
July 30 - Blaenavon Rhymney Brewery 
Aug 3 - 29 - 10.30pm The Gilded Balloon, Edinburgh Fringe  


The 4077th said...

Jack Straw? Blimey. I reckon you should aim to get seen by as many Home Secretaries as possible, just because no other comedy act involving socks has ever attempted such a thing. Though David Blunkett might prove tricky.

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