Comedy is hard. Really hard. Medicine hard. So, who better than to take on the challenge of pretending to be funny in a room full of staff and students than those used to be pretending to be clever in a room full of staff and students. And that’s just what the Manchester Medics’ Revue has been doing for the past four years running. After rising from the ashes in 2011, the yearly sketch comedy show has gone from strength to strength in its attempt to scrape humour from such comedy gold mines as Langerhans cells, designer deaths and Jeremy Kyle.
However, whilst performing to a room of medical students is great fun (Martini references always go down a storm), the cast have yearned for something more. It’s long been a dream amongst the members of to take the show to bigger and better venues and, this year, that dream became a reality when we became ambassadors for all that is funny in the greater Stopford area at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.
The Edinburgh Fringe Festival is the largest arts festival in the world. It’s honestly intimidating to be surrounded by such a vast amount of talented creative performers be it grizzled comic veterans to feminist slam poets to upstart student theatre companies and the list goes on. The festival spans over 25 days, over 3190 shows, over 50 countries represented in over 300 venues. We performed an abridged best-of show of the past four years over the course of an hour to packed out audiences on some days and to around eight people on others. Our start in show business was in a venue that somewhat lacked for glitz and glamour – a basement of a Mexican chain restaurant (next to the toilets). However, despite humble origins we had amazingly positive feedback from people that came to see the show and managed to raise over £340 in voluntary donations for the society – apparently jokes about Langerhans cells are broad enough to be enjoyed by everyone.
I want to send a massive thank you to all who attended the festival and who saw the show at any point – be it as a performer, a supporter or your average every day punter looking for entertainment. We couldn’t, and wouldn’t have wanted to do this without the support of Manchester students, medical or otherwise, who’ve come out year on year to see us say silly things on stage.
To all those out there who have ever wanted to be involved with comedy, performance or just having a laugh then please get in contact. Part of being at the festival is getting to know students from around the country doing the same kinds of material as yourself so there has never been a better time to get involved and you never know, it could be you writing a shamelessly self-promoting article about the show next year.
Enjoy the next semester.
Robert Potter and Vincent Simpson