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Seven Dials Playhouse Reveals Fringe Preview Season

Learn more about the lineup here!

By: Jun. 21, 2024
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If you can’t make it up to the Edinburgh Fringe this year, Seven Dials Playhouse is ensuring you’ll have the chance to catch some of these hits before they head North with their fantastic preview season this summer. Their inaugural preview season will allow artists to trial their material in an all-encompassing safe space, offering London audiences the opportunity to see these remarkable shows before they become the picks of the Fringe. This terrific season will include debut solo shows from the likes of Skins star Megan Prescott, viral sketch star Ali Woods and hilarious comedians Kemah Bob, Catherine Cohen, Olga Koch, Paddy Young and Celya AB and many more Fringe favourites!

This fantastic preview season is full to the brim with phenomenal new theatre, kickstarting with Megan Prescott, who writes and stars in her debut solo show Really Good Exposure with a world of child stars, strip clubs, and casting couches, and questions what it means to earn a living as a performer.  Inspired by a Hungarian gangster dad, a Sunday school mother and teenage years with Hell's Angels, Emma Taylor (producer of NewsRevue) takes us on an unforgettable ride in MAN: A One Woman Show. Squidge is a brilliant but devastating one-woman show about those left behind by our education system and the politics of love and hope.  As reality and screenplay merge, overlap and intertwine, Dante & The Robot looks at technology and simpler ways of being.  With role playing, physical challenge and psychological intimidation, Absolute Monopoly is a chaotic interactive gameshow where audience members compete against each other and the host.  Performed by psychiatrist Dr Jo Prendergast, author of teen mental health book When Life Sucks, The Cool Mum is a clean, award-winning parody of a personal development seminar for Gen Z-ers to Boomers.

Comedians always want a test ground to try out new work and the preview season presents some of comedy’s biggest names.  Pierre Novellie tries out material for his new show about life, fairness and expectations.  The work in progress from Chortle Student Awards and BBC New Comedy Awards loser Jin Hao Li will take us on a journey into a world of gritty softness, dry wit and stories from the surreal.  As seen on Comedy Central Live, ITV2's Stand Up Sketch Show and heard on BBC Radio 4, Ali Woods brings a hilarious stand-up WIP hour about trying to be yourself.  Join Erika Ehler as she works out material for her new show, pairing her razor-sharp, dark and visceral writing with precise delivery.  Edinburgh Award nominee, Sara Barron has a new show that’s fierce, savage and other adjectives from RuPaul’s Drag Race. 

My Last Two Brain Cells is an absurdist, laugh a minute award-winning debut show from Tom Hazelden and Joe Pike with audience interaction, music, skits and “the most beautiful dance duet the world has ever seen”.  Edinburgh Comedy Award nominee Tom Ballard comes to Seven Dials Playhouse with a WIP for his new show as he tries to figure out of if it makes sense.  Enable Me explores the ups and downs of being a disabled dad and family life as Joshua Robertson embraces his identity as a gay man.  Bella Hull has let out her inner child, and now it's at large; hide your kids, hide your wives, hide your lunch as she will eat them all for breakfast.  In his WIP, Rob Auton considers what makes someone open their eyes and what makes them shut them.  Michelle Shaughnessy brings us a show for anyone who thinks it's too late to achieve their dreams, because it probably is.  A regular in Edinburgh, JJ Whitehead has been touring his brand of social and confessional comedy around the world for 20 years now. 

Preet Singh has quickly become an established act on the UK Comedy Circuit, and this is an opportunity to see his WIP before the Fringe.  Shuffle is a new show from the critically acclaimed, nightie-clad sketch zealots Tarot.  As seen on QI, Richard Osman's House of Games, Jonathan Ross' Comedy Club acclaimed comedian, Kemah Bob presents their unmissable debut stand-up show, Miss Fortunate.  Paddy Young, 2024 Chortle Award Best Newcomer winner and 2023 Edinburgh Comedy Award Best Newcomer nominee, returns for more Fringe fun.  Colin Hoult is back with a stand-up show about family, fatherhood, and a formative childhood experience with a Ouija board and a gorilla. Following multiple sell-out tours and barnstorming appearances at JFL Montreal and Melbourne ICF, Ceyla AB returns to tackle the big three: beauty, money and the void.  

New Zealand's hottest comedy pop-music duo Two Hearts are back – now with more ‘vow’ factor.  Paul Williams bought a second-hand film camera last year and it turned out the previous owner had left a used-up roll of film in it; the star of Taskmaster NZ tells us all about it.  Character comedian Emma Sidi has become Sue Gray.  International comedian Isabella Charlton tells of a dark steamy affair between her father and the family's nanny.  From New York-based stand-up, viral video comedian and former tech employee Alexis Gay, Unprofessional is a comedy debut about working (or, uh, not working) in tech.  While New Zealand-Filipino comedy veteran James Roque serves up an hour of his trademark sweet-and-salty comedy.  

Chief Executive of Seven Dials Playhouse Amanda Davey comments, We are really excited to be presenting the inaugural Edinburgh Fringe Preview Season here at Seven Dials Playhouse. There are so many amazing, and diverse artists involved, and an array of fantastic shows to see so whatever it is you are into, we have something for you. If this is your first time to Seven Dials Playhouse, we look forward to welcoming you.

This thrilling new season will also offer a fantastic opportunity to check out the ‘Seven from Seven’, the Seven Dials Playhouse supported productions that were announced earlier this year. Award-winning drag king and London's loveable nature boy, Bi-Curious George, invites you to Queer Planet, a raucous celebration of queerness and the animal kingdom aiming to shatter the heteronormative binaries through which we view the natural world. Inspired by true events, The Emu War: A New Musical follows the Australian government's futile attempts to fight mischievous emus. All The Fraudulent Horse Girls is a new one-act play with surreal monologues, music, and drag for anyone who has ever been a Horse Girl, Train Boy, or weird kid defined by the things that they love. Tragically semi-autobiographical tragicomedy, Never Get To Heaven In An Empty Shell forces Claud to question mortality as she has an unlikely encounter with a ghost.  BANGTAIL is an epic tale of a man in search of his manhood with unbridled cowboy clown chaos.  Watch a study of divorce, fertility problems and heartache counterbalanced by the joys of later in life sexual and personal awakening in Did You Mean To Fall Like That?  Inspired by the 1991 tribunal, A Jaffa Cake Musical seeks to determine the true identity of a Jaffa Cake, and truly takes the biscuit (or cake...?).

Programme Director, Katie Pesskin comments, Taking work to the Edinburgh Fringe can be really daunting and having the chance to get that work on a stage ahead of the Festival is such a vital part of the process. It’s also a brilliant chance for audiences who can’t make it to Edinburgh to catch a sneak preview of some of the most exciting new shows headed to the biggest arts festival in the world. 


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