Che Guevara on the Fringe

 

 

 

A half-arsed Orwellian allegory based on 'Evita'...  

A theatrical, musical comedy extravaganza that has now completed three critically acclaimed seasons at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in 2005, 2006 & 2007... 

The show stars Kieran Butler as Trey Guevara, Austin Low as Frankie McCastro & Michelle Wilson from Whimsical Tricycle as Evonne Keron...

 

 

THE 'CHE GUEVARA ON THE FRINGE' NEWS REPORT FROM THE 2007 EDINBURGH FRINGE

FOUR STARS - THE SCOTSMAN - "the performers are engaging comedians who make it genuinely entertaining"

"the best analysis of the outrageous economics of the Edinburgh Fringe that you will hear anywhere" - The Dubliner   

NEW FOUR STAR REVIEW FROM "THREE WEEKS"                         FIVE STAR PUNTER REVIEWS

KIERAN & AUSTIN LAUNCH THEIR BRAND COMEDY SHOW CONCEPT "POUND FOR YOU"   

JANEY GODLEY RECOMMENDS "CHE GUEVARA..." IN "THE DAILY TELEGRAPH" 

 

WATCH THIS WMV FROM 2006 - Scroll down for more 2006 video footage

              

    

"Damn good fun... Che Guevara on the Fringe is possibly the best free show that you will see. This is not to damn Kieran Butler with faint praise - it is the truth. The revolution will not be televised; the revolution will be live on the streets of the Royal Mile! Join the revolution, brothers and sisters!" Edinburgh Evening News (2005)

       "Thoroughly unpretentious, highly entertaining... you'll soon find yourself marching the streets of Edinburgh, demanding change, hugging downtrodden performers, and thoroughly enjoying yourself." Three Weeks (2006) Click to read the full review

"Unpretentious, barbed and chaotic.... the hardworking duo utilise their talent for crowd banter and musical parody" The List (2006) Click to read the full review

 

MEDIA RELEASE: Che Guevara on the Fringe – Evonne Keron Strikes Back (2007)

A half-arsed Orwellian allegory based on Evita. The Fringe is a microcosm of capitalism. The venues are the bourgeoisie. The artists are the proletariat. Join the revolution!

On August 28, 2006 Australian comedian, Kieran Butler, and his Scottish comrade, Austin Low, led forty people from Princes Street to Teviot Square. In their final revolutionary act for the 2006 season of ‘Che Guevara…’ the duo - in their respective roles as Trey Guevara and Frankie McCastro - donated balloons to the Gilded Balloon. In so doing, they ensured the venue would henceforth avoid prosecution under the terms of the Trade Misdescription Act. For indeed, up until that point, there were no balloons at the Gilded Balloon! VIDEO FOOTAGE

‘Che Guevara…’ is arguably the most anarchic show at the festival. Last year, Kieran was threatened with police arrest on the Royal Mile, and the staff at the Gilded Balloon – whose director Karen Koren is satirised by the show – were none too impressed by the unannounced legal protest staged by Trey and Frankie.

Despite this, the show has been a hit with critics and audiences alike. Primarily based in the future; up until the point where the audience is invited to travel through time and take a walking tour around the streets of present day Edinburgh. The tour takes in important landmarks of the future, and the audience is able to observe at first hand how the seeds of the failed revolution of 2017 were first sown.

During the 2006 season Kieran and Austin discovered that the Venue Managers Militia detailed in their satirical version of the future had manifested itself in real life when the Fringe venue managers announced the formation of the Venue Managers and Promoters Association.  

In 2007 the role of Evonne Keron will be played by Michelle Wilson from Whimsical Tricycle. Keron is resurrected from her untimely death by the Venue Managers Militia in 2017. She will strike back with a vengeance. Can Trey and Frankie regroup the Fringe Performers Guerilla Army? What will become of Johnny Leopard and The Bland Comedy Club? Are any the songs from the soundtrack of Jesus Christ Superstar sacred?

Synopsis: August 2nd, 2017: The eve of the re-branded McFringe festival. The leaders of the Venue Managers Militia are gathered at a secret location observing the preparations of the Fringe Performers Guerilla Army near the Edinburgh castle. The VMA are in turmoil. Their leader, Evonne Keron, has died from a vodka related illness. Keron has been a shadowy figure on the Fringe since the late 1980’s and has a penchant for setting fire to opposition venues. 

Local comedy promoter Johnny Leopard has been allied to the FPGA and the fractious Free Fringe organisation for over 10 years. His venue, The Bland Comedy Club, has been a beacon for cash strapped performers for years, but a recent poster napalm attack has left him drastically exposed. The proverbial Judas in this convoluted tale, he is making his way across Edinburgh to betray the leader of the FPGA, Trey Guevara. He will divulge all the details of the revolution that is planned for August 4th, 2017.

Frankie McCastro is Trey Guevara’s co-conspirator. Since 2007, they have fought a constant guerilla struggle against the capitalist forces on the Fringe. As corporate brands proliferated, e.g. the Pepsi Pleasance, performers have continued to pay the financial price of effectively underwriting the festival through massive financial guarantees.

The disenfranchised gathered around Trey and Frankie who began the process of planning the revolution detailed in their copies of “Enid Blyton’s Guide to The Communist Manifesto”.

The revolution fails and Trey Guevara is killed by flyer mortaring. A desolate Frankie McCastro flees the carnage and attempts time travel by utilising narrative tools not seen in fiction since the mid 1980’s. He travels back in time two days, where Trey Guevara is celebrating the passing of Evonne Keron in a dingy Edinburgh pub by singing hack parodies from the musical ‘Evita’.

The VMA seek inspiration from the 20th century’s greatest storyteller; George Lucas. Evonne Keron’s body is renovated; a Microsoft operating system is uploaded into the computer housed in her lower back. She is re-booted. Her resurrection is complete…

 

 

Stuff from past shows...

Che Guevara on the Fringe 2 - 2006

Billy Watson has put together extended videos of 'Che Guevara on the Fringe 2' Click here

Che Guevara on the Fringe 2 confirmed that it is indeed the most anarchic show at the Edinburgh Fringe at the conclusion of the last show on Monday 28 August when Trey (Kieran Butler) and Frankie (Austin Low) led over 40 punters to the Gilded Balloon to ask a question many people have been asking for years: "Where are the balloons at the Gilded Balloon?" Whilst Gilded Balloon staff looked around the venue in vain for a balloon, Trey produced a small 69p packet of party balloons and asked his fellow comrades to blow them up!

Check out our video and look out for Aristocrats director Paul Provenza who was there capture it all on camera. Abie Bowman, the star of the hit Fringe show 'Jesus: The Guantanamo Years' was also part of the large group who marched all the way from The 3 Tuns in Hanover St to the Teviot Square.

Art vs. Reality - Whilst on the Royal Mile, during Saturday's (19/8) performance of 'Che Guevara on the Fringe 2' Kieran was threatened with arrest and "expulsion from a festival venue" by a member of the police force.

His crime: using a megaphone to amplify his voice. Apparently, amplification is not allowed on the Royal Mile - except for music! We are awaiting clarification on this.

The policeman attempted to grab the megaphone out of Kieran's hands but was unsuccessful. He backed down when Kieran pointed out he was a Fringe performer and that he was in the middle of show! The audience just looked on in stunned silence.

It was made clear to Kieran that if he used the megaphone again he would be physically restrained and moved on. The policeman even called for reinforcements who stood close by whilst the show continued on to it's conclusion without further interruption.

                         

Che Guevara on the Fringe - 2005

The full review from the Edinburgh Evening News

Che Guevara on the Fringe: The Tour

Snapshot: Motor through the cycle of the Fringe with diarist Che Highpoint: Royal Mile at the Fringe gets a royal send-up Lowpoint: Nothing. It is free after all... Snapshot in the style of a crass reviewer's quote on a poster: A radical performance!

Like the poor, Fringe performers accosting weary strangers on the Royal Mile to tout their shows will always be with us. Indeed, as Australian comedian Kieran Butler points out, this is largely because they are poor themselves. But Butler has managed to lift himself up from the downtrodden masses of touts and, in a revolutionary act, turned the promotion of his own show into something unexpected: damn good fun.

However, Che Guevara on the Fringe is so much more than just the promotion of another show, it is a show worth seeing for itself. Butler engages the audience with some banter and songs before, in the ramshackle guise of the poster boy of student revolt, deconstructing the dark capitalist plot underneath the faade of entertainment with his tour of the Edinburgh Fringe

Butler takes his audience on a history of the 2005 Festival through the lens of the 2017 Festival. In this dystopian vision of the future, the seeds of which are sown on the Royal Mile of 2005, the Festival has been bought by McDonald's and turned into the McFringe. Butler's comic insights into performers and touts trying to repay the huge debts accumulated from putting on a show are well-worth hearing for those of us tempted to force a tout to eat one of their own flyers.

Che Guevara on the Fringe is possibly the best free show that you will see. This is not to damn Kieran Butler with faint praise - it is the truth. The revolution will not be televised; the revolution will be live on the streets of the Royal Mile! Join the revolution, brothers and sisters! 

 

 

Evonne Keron (1958 - 2017) 

Born the daughter of Cumbrian fish farmers, Evonne rose through the ranks of the Labour Party and left inexplicably amidst howls of acrimony aged 16. She disappeared for 10 years like Harold in Neighbours. She returned with a marketing degree from Baghdad University and as the Fringe rose to prominence she was credited with the rise and fall of major stars in its heyday in the eighties and nineties. She became infamous for her creative accounting systems which contributed to the downturn in many fortunes on Fringe stages, and her many bankruptcies. She liked macrame and collecting those polystyrene balls out of bean bags.

Evonne is pictured right soon after resigning from the Labour Party in 1975 and left with 'the director' of "Che Guevara on the Fringe" played by Austin Low

 

Some actual quotes from some very real people!

"Unless we are a little more generous to performers and a little more hostile to those on the make, the reputation of the Fringe is in jeopardy" Tommy Sheppard, The Stand comedy club, Edinburgh

"A ticket price of £15 is a teensy bit on the steep side for an hours entertainment, is it not"  Jennifer Veitch, Edinburgh Evening News

We are both very impressed you have kept reading this far! BOOK YOUR FREE TICKET NOW

Viva revolution, Kieran & Austin

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