Autumn in the City

You could never be bored when living in a vibrant city like Edinburgh or Glasgow. As a student, there are countless exciting and diverse events happening every single week.
And yet, I find myself spending nights watching old Friends episodes and Hagendaasing myself into an early grave, simply because I haven’t heard of half these events.
Naturally, with so much going on all the time, it can be hard to keep up with what will interest you, and so this list will act as an entry point into some of the cool things happening across the two cities over the autumn, with something that will hopefully suit everyone.
We’re all familiar with Halloween and Bonfire Night so STEPHEN BUTCHARD brings you the events that you may not have even heard of…

EDINBURGH

Oktoberfest Edinburgh

autumn-octoberfest

Edinburgh’s Oktoberfest event is a chance to soak in the Bavarian holiday without breaking the bank on plane tickets, whilst still satisfying you’re thirst for ridiculously oversized beer and hotdogs.

Student binge drinking is a horribly overused stereotype that I try my hardest not to adhere to.

However, when there’s a festival literally encouraging social outdoor drinking, you can’t really pass up the opportunity.

Taking place in  Princes Street Gardens between the 7th and 11th of October, the event should be a fun social gathering for anyone wanting to work on their beer belly.

Oktoberfest Edinburgh takes place in Princes Street Gardens from October 7-11

Daniel Sloss – Dark

Daniel Sloss emerged onto the scene as an eager teen with jokes to rival any big-name comedian.

Now, as his style evolves and he’s finding love over in America with the help of excellent slots on Conan, some are no longer laughing at the new-found darkness to his act.

Dark, his latest tour, is a self-aware reaction to this, filled with sharp observations on growing up, fame, and the usual targets like his sister.

It has been well received at the Fringe, selling out to the extent that more shows were required.

autumn-sloss

Dark will play at the Stand on September 30


An evening with noel fielding

Trippy surrealism, oddball anecdotes and infantile goofiness mesh together to create a night of comedy that’s exactly what you’d expect from the man that brought the world a hermaphroditic merman called Old Gregg.

Despite entering his early forties, the Mighty Boosh founder shows no signs of growing up, which is no bad thing when shows as bizarrely entertaining as this are the result.

Fielding’s sense of humour naturally won’t be for everyone – there’s a section where a pink triangle called Gordon has sex with Fielding’s imaginary wife, and then pops a ‘Toblerboner’ – but fans of his shtick are going to be in weirdo heaven.

autumn-fielding

Noel Fielding will play the EICC on November 14 November and King’s Theatre, Glasgow, on November 15


The Amazing World of MC Escher

No, he’s not Deutschland’s favourite hip-hop artist; Dutch graphical wizard MC Escher is one of the most celebrated figures within modern art, with a stunning catalogue of work that uses optical trickery to confound its audience into questioning the reality outside of the painting.

Although his work is meticulous and extremely clever, it remains accessible to anyone who witnesses it thanks to the way it puzzles and pleases the eye. Referenced by everyone from Douglas Hofstadter to Family Guy, his work is a cultural and artistic landmark, and can be experienced in person through the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art’s exhibition covering his life and work.

autumn-amazing

The exhibition will run until September 27; Tickets cost £9

Handbagged
As comedy double acts go, you’d think Queen Elizabeth II and Margaret Thatcher would be near the bottom of the laughter pile – perhaps a cut above the Chuckle Brothers, but not by much.

However, the monarch and former Prime Minister have been paired in several productions over the past few years to great success, perhaps most notably in Moira Buffini’s sharply written Handbagged.

This sees younger and older versions of the two political giants squabbling amongst each other in a play that paints a portrait of this unusual relationship with vivid colour and sardonic wit.

It’s stuffed with intelligent references to the politics of the era it re-imagines.

However, the deeply self-aware meta-humour and imaginative dialogue ensure that it will please even those with little interest in British politics.

Handbagged will play the King’s Theatre from November 2-7


GLASGOW

One Man Breaking Bad: The Unlicensed Parody
The sombre finale of Breaking Bad left many fans feeling lost.
Instead of satisfying this addiction with House of Cards or, y’know, going outside like other viewers post-BB, LA comedian Miles Allen instead decided to submerse himself in the cult appeal of the show completely, by setting up a one man parody act as a love letter to Vince Gilligan’s masterpiece.
After amassing millions of views online for a short skit, Allen eventually brought his act to the Melbourne Comedy Festival and the Fringe where it became a sell-out.
Now, he’s going worldwide.
Covering 60 episodes in 60 minutes, complete with character impersonations, cheesy singalong segments, and a whole lot of fan service, it acts as a collective AA meeting for super fans.
The near sacrilegious approach to the show’s legacy as well as some tasteless pop culture references have proved polarising.
But lovers of the series looking for easy laughs with a dose of crowd participation will find their addiction satisfied.

autumn-bad

One Man Breaking Bad will play the Theatre Royal Glasgow on November 1

OOG

autumn-oog

Unsettling and unforgettable in equal measure, Al Seed’s OOG is a masterfully warped piece of contemporary dance to rival any other in Scotland.

It acts as a companion piece to the critically lauded ‘The Factory’, a decidedly uncomfortable work that challenged audiences through its unrelenting darkness and abrasive soundtrack, focusing squarely on the deterioration of its only character’s humanity through a performance raw with inhuman contortions and visceral physicality.

Set solely in a locked cellar, dark except for a single shaft of light from above, OOG’s focus relies solely on the disturbing movements of Seed’s creature, backed by a metallic soundtrack from Guy Veale.

Despite its brief 30-minute runtime, it remains intense throughout.
It won’t be for everyone, by any means, but no matter your thoughts on OOG, it’s a performance that won’t leave you unchanged.

OOG will play on September 24 at The Tron Theatre


Dragon

No matter the medium, childhood grief is a subject difficult to discuss both thoughtfully and delicately without over simplifying.

Oliver Emmanuel’s ‘Dragon’ does it brilliantly, with immense emotional power and pensive reflection – all without a word being spoken.

Returning after its rapturous 2013 premiere, the production follows a 15-year-old boy coping with the loss of his mother as his family collapses, told through the visually striking puppetry of the dragons that begin to infiltrate his world.

Imaginative in staging and raw in storytelling, don’t be surprised if Dragon leaves you as a blubbering baby by its finish.

Dragon will play at Citizens Theatre from October 1-10

autumn-dragon


What Goes Around

What Goes Around, Liz Lochead’s contemporary reimagining of the once-forbidden classic La Ronde is not exactly one to take your mother to.

autumn-what

The play is an intimate, uncompromisingly raunchy comedy focusing on sex and its many shades. The playwright is one of the most celebrated in the country, and given the bold move to focus solely on two actors, playing seven characters each, it’s an ambitious production with promise.

What Goes Around plays at the Tron Theatre on September 17-19


The Choir

autumn-choir

Pitched as a gritty, yet heartwarming modern channelling of classics like Billy Elliott and Brassed Off, The Choir looks to be a true crowd pleaser in every sense.
The musical comedy tells of a disparate group of choir singers, ranging from an Iraqi Refugee to a Tory Councillor, who gradually begin to learn more about each other by sharing their favourite songs with the group each week.
It was written by Paul Higgins whose debut ‘Nobody Will ever Forgive Us’ was received warmly upon its release, and features music from Deacon Blue’s Ricky Ross.
The duo are apparently well aware of the play’s potentially schmaltzy premise, but promise the play has a realistic edge.

The Choir will be performed at the Citizen’s Theatre from Oct 24-Nov14. 50p tickets on sale on Oct 17, 10am