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Edinburgh Moment: Weirdest Audience

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After his sell-out debut in 2010 Mark Nelson returns to the Fringe with his show Guilty Pleasure. Winner of the Scottish Comedian of the Year Award in 2006, Nelson has had his fair share of strange audience members.

I did a late night gig in front of an audience of 16 Hibs casuals (a notorious group of Edinburgh football hooligans). After watching every act die after being mercilessly heckled, including one act who left the stage in tears, I prepared for the same treatment. I agreed with the crowd that if after the first minute they hated me, I'd leave, but if they laughed, they'd shut up for the rest of my set. After a minute I was doing well and stupidly said to my girlfriend, "Looks like we'll get out of here alive", only to have one of the casual's wives kick a stool at me and growl, "Don't speak to f'n soon pal".

Another time there was a late night gig called Spank which has a slot where anyone who has a show at the Fringe can come on and publicise it, but they have to do it naked. One night I was on, two French blokes got up, naked as the day they were born and started to dance to the music and speak about how much they love Edinburgh. When the compere asked them, when and where their show was, one of them replied, "Oh, we have no show. We only wanted to make friends".

Mark Nelson - Guilty Pleasure is on at the Underbelly Cowgate from 4-28 August (excl 17) at 19.10.


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