EDINBURGH 2019: Jon Long Q&A
Musical comedian JON LONG's debut comedy hour PLANET KILLING MACHINE provides a selection of brilliantly original songs, whilst also launching into a hilarious tirade on all the ways we are destroying the planet and the steps we can all take to turn the tide.
Tell us a bit about Planet Killing Machine
I was once told that a debut Fringe show should be an introduction to who you are. As a human being it's hard for me to define myself as anything right now, other than a Planet-Killing Machine. The show is about me discovering the extent of my own carbon footprint, and how easy it is to avoid that realisation by focusing inwardly on personal dramas instead.... but y'know.... with jokes and songs and stuff.
Do you think you know what to expect from your Fringe debut?
Kind of. I've got friends who've done their debut and who've told me what to expect, and I've been to Edinburgh before doing showcases and shorter shows. What I'm not entirely prepared for is the reviews, or the major impostor syndrome that I'm sure will come with people paying actual money up front to see little ol' me for an hour.
What makes your show stand out from thousands of others?
Despite the prominence of environmental stories in our media at the moment, and the sheer scale of the crisis we find ourselves in, there's not actually all that many shows about it at the Fringe. Perhaps people don't think our impending doom is a good source of chuckles? But we do need to talk about it. Also, I have a background in environmental education, I'm not just jumping on the Greta-bandwagon here.
Who would you recommend comes to see Planet Killing Machine?
Anyone! Despite my previous work in this area (specifically on the topic of the Waste Hierarchy) the show is not a lecture. I'm no saint; in fact my learning about this topic has mainly made me qualified enough to diagnose my own shortcomings. It's a show for anyone who is starting to take in the scale of the problem, and who is now wrestling with inner-turmoil and guilt. The newly conscious incompetents, like me.
What's next for you after the festival?
I'm working on a few different things, including a potential radio show on this subject which is in the super early stages. Mainly though, as ever, I want to focus on live performance. That's what I'm really interested in doing, any other project is a bonus. As well as a continued effort to be less planet-killer-y in my personal life.
Jon Long: Planet Killing Machine is at Edinburgh Festival Fringe from 31st July - 26th August. Tickets and more information: https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/jon-long-planet-killing-machine
Photo credit: Mark Dawson