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Mr B (Chap-Hop)
Mr B (Chap-Hop)

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KIRKCALDY’S comedy festival is set to unveil a whole new look for 2012.

The annual event, which has brought some of the biggest names in stand-up to town, will have a strong cabaret theme when it returns in October.

It will feature the best of the acts currently performing on the Edinburgh Festival Fringe plus burlesque, vaudeville and much more in a programme which will see shows staged across the town centre throughout October.

On Monday, Bob Carruthers, producer, gave a sneak preview of what was in store by staging a live show featuring the best of ‘‘Vive Le Cabaret’’ at The Voodoo Rooms in the heart of Edinburgh - the first time Kirkcaldy Comedy Festival has gone to the Fringe.

Showcase

The bill include stand-up comedy from Bob Loolally, the football manager, music from Tommy Mackay who performs as the Sensational Alex Salmond Gastric Band, plus juggling, vaudeville and even some hand puppetry.

Bob explained: ‘‘It’s a flavour of what we want to bring to Kirkcaldy.

‘‘We want to go much wider than just comedy, and we want people to be involved - and have fun.’’

The 2012 festival will see new venues unveiled alongside established bars and clubs - and some may not be where you’d expect to see live entertainment.

It will also include street theatre and movies, plus shows aimed at children.

‘‘We want to bring people to the High Street, and we want as many businesses there to benefit - so you may see shows in shops and coffee houses as well as bars. We really want to make it special.’’

It’s a big change from previous festivals which have brought stand-up stars of the calibre of Adam Hills, Kevin Bridges and Fred MacAualay to town, but comedy will remain at its core.

Star names

Patrick Monahan - winner of ITV’s ‘Show Me The Funny’ is pencilled in to play in Society, while festival favourites such as Billy Kirkwood and Janey Godley are set to return along, to name but a few.

‘‘We will still have stand-up,’’ said Bob. ‘‘For me the chance to bring cabaret across widens the festival’s appeal and can be part of a mix which offers something for everyone. There has to be more.

‘‘The aim is to involve local businesses, audiences and the public every step of the way by giving everyone the opportunity to be part of it - whether it’s hosting a show, helping to make a film, or getting dressed up for a parade.

‘‘It’s all about making an impact, getting involved and having fun.

‘‘And if you simply want to buy a ticket to a show and be entertained - we’ll do that too!’’

The festival is again backed by Kirkcaldy4All which was at the Fringe launch.

Bill Harvey, manager, said: ‘‘It promises to be something different. We want to freshen up the festival and go down a different route this year, and spread the benefits across the town centre.’’