An audience with John Cooper Clarke and others

John Cooper Clarke (Pic by Alison Peters)
John Cooper Clarke (Pic by Alison Peters)

Following on from the success of last season’s entertaining and enlightening An Audience With... shows, ON Fife is bringing more top attractions to Fife over the coming months.

Two of the biggest names are very different personalities who have both had their share of controversy and time in the media spotlight.

Calum Best

Calum Best

Shooting to prominence as the original ‘people’s poet’ who captured the ethos of the punk era, Dr John Cooper Clarke has been on a world tour with his latest show, The Luckiest Guy Alive, and his night on stage in Fife will be a cultural tour de force not to be missed.

Since his emergence as a man of words in the 1970s, his career has spanned cultures, audiences, art forms and continents.

Today, John Cooper Clarke is as relevant and vibrant as ever, and his influence just as visible on today’s pop culture.

Aside from his trademark ‘look’ continuing to resonate with fashionistas young and old - and his poetry even included on national curriculum syllabus - his effect on modern music is huge.

Neil Oliver

Neil Oliver

His latest show, which has been touring across the UK, USA, Canada and Australasia, is a mix of classic verse, extraordinary new material, hilarious ponderings on modern life, good honest gags, riffs and chat – but be mindful that his inimitable style will not be suitable for under 18s.

His appearance at the Carnegie Hall is a chance to witness a living legend at the top of this game.

John Cooper Clarke is at the Carnegie Hall, Dunfermline, Sunday, October 20, 7.30pm. £25, ages 18+.

With the cultural phenomenon that is the latest series of Love Island coming to a close, An Audience With... Calum Best provides an opportunity to see the winner of the original Celebrity Love Island up close and personal.

While Calum is a reality TV veteran – a popular housemate in two series of Celebrity Big Brother, serving a culinary appearance on Celebrity Come Dine With Me and making his mark on Famously Single, Fife Cultural Trust is delighted to be able to show there is much more to the man than his popular culture celebrity status.

Recently, he also showed his much more serious side when he presented and led the BBC3 documentary Brought up with Booze, about growing up under the cloud of his footballing legend father George Best’s alcoholism.

The show amassed such high viewing figures it was subsequently aired on BBC1 following its success. Calum also penned a book about his relationship with his father and alcoholism, Second Best.

Although known for his TV work and for being the son of the late George Best, Calum has had a diverse career.

He is also an accomplished model, having worked in the field since his teenage years, and also made his acting debut alongside Darren Day in the independent UK film Dangerous Game.

Other strings to his bow include being a highly popular public speaker, an actor and an entrepreneur with a huge passion for health and positivity.

In 2017 he launched a spiritual daily journal based on mindfulness, productivity and goal setting called BestMeLife and following on from the success of this, produced a child-friendly version.

He is devoted to his charity work and last year his company BestMeLife became a partner with leading children’s charity NSPCC and continues to work with it as an ambassador.

He is also a long-time supporter and patron of NACOA UK, which is the national organisation for the children of alcoholics. As well as speaking directly to children affected, in 2018, Calum climbed Mont Blanc in aid of NACOA.

The night at the Carnegie Hall will most certainly have more than its share of laughs, however, especially with TV and radio presenter Craig Stevens sharing the stage as compere.

Craig had his first presenting job on Brainteaser and now presents a weekend show on Heart radio.

He spent some time presenting for ITV and is an anchor host for Sky Cinema interviewing film stars including Jim Carrey, Kristen Stewart, Steve Carell, Justin Bieber, Jodie Foster.

Craig has also presented from the BAFTA red carpet, and in the past has even done stand-up comedy.

He is also a presenter on Sky One DC Greatest Moments and a contributor on C5 Most Shocking Celebrity Moments

Calum Best, with compere Craig Stevens, is at the Carnegie Hall, Dunfermline, on Friday, October 25, 7.30pm. £21/conc £19.

The third big-hitter in the season is Neil Oliver, most widely known as the presenter of the hugely popular TV series Coast and A History of Scotland.

He’s going to be undertaking a nationwide tour with his latest passion, The Story of the British Isles in 100 Places, and will be making his only Fife appearance on November 30.

As Neil describes it, from windswept headlands to battlefields, ancient trees to magnificent cathedrals, each of his 100 places capture the spirit of the past.

As an archaeologist, historian and author, Neil has a unique view and understanding of British history.

But don’t be daunted by the breadth of the subject, his Audience With... promises to be an amusing and entertaining ways to learn, and to hear why he thinks we need to cherish and celebrate our wonderful countries.

Neil Oliver is at the Carnegie Theatre, Dunfermline, on Saturday, November 30, 7.30pm, £23.50.

For more details about these and other events visit the website onfife.com.