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EDINBURGH 2019: Lolly Jones Q&A

EDINBURGH 2019: Lolly Jones Q&A

Putting burlesque to its originally intended purpose, LOLLY JONES' unique style of satire fuses lip sync to political speeches with clowning and cabaret. Embodying a host of Europe's forerunning female politicians, I BELIEVE IN MERKELS is the sultry, silly and subversive send-up of Brexit shambles that we all desperately need. She chatted to BroadwayWorld ahead of performing the show at this year's Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

Tell us a bit about I Believe In Merkels.

If you're worried about the prospect of a No Deal, then you need to see I Believe in Merkels! There'll be a tapdancing Nigel Farage, a camp Bohemian Rhapsody with Theresa and the Brexiteers and a burlesquing Angela Merkel.

I also play my mum. She voted Leave and we have had to ban talk of Brexit at home. I'm not sure how she'll feel about me using her words on stage whilst dancing and tantalisingly taking off stockings!

I'll be lip syncing female politician's famous speeches whilst stripping, dancing and gurning one's face off (oh hey, Theresa)! Expect a wake for the former PM's career, saucy yellow vest protestors and LED nipple tassels. It's fun and glittery with upbeat pop classics and a mockery of everything that is Brexit!

What sets it apart from other shows at the festival?

I doubt any other show features Nicola Sturgeon in SNP diamante lingerie; I've been hot gluing the national party corset for weeks now!

Lip syncing politician's actual words has a real poignancy. It documents the u-turns and exposes their faux pas'. And it's set to a soundtrack of disco and The Proclaimers. What's not to love? I've done the boring research and I serve it on a platter of neo-burlesque and German merkins.

I also hope that the audience will learn something about Angela Merkel's love of the EU - how, after a life behind the iron curtain, it symbolises freedom and peace. I'm not sure if she rates David Hasselhoff's career since the wall fell or if she rides a hoverboard in her spare time, but I've taken some artistic license. I reckon she'd enjoy watching this show.

Who would you recommend comes to see it?

I had a real mix of people at Fifty Shades of May last year. It's genuinely popular with everyone - even Tories! But I think if you're as angry as I am about the state of politics right now - the dismantling of the NHS, an un-elected Prime Minister and the general shit show in Brussels - then this is a good place to let off some steam.

The only person who won't enjoy the show is my mum. She's an introvert and is not happy that I'm using her voice. Or her clothes.

Are there any other shows you're hoping to catch at the festival?

There are so many amazing shows this year. I've already booked to see Tracey Collins - I've not seen her do Tina Turner T'Lady but her Audrey Heartburn and Flo the Hairdresser characters are absolutely hilarious. I highly recommend her. I'm also looking forward to Emmy Fyles - Socially Awkward Penguin, Scream Phone and whatever chaos Luke McQueen serves up.

Having performed at the festival before do you think you know what to expect from it?

You can never know what to expect! Last year, I pretty much sold out the run - what if I have empty houses?

And I'll be honest - I'm not sure my accommodation is legit. We've already paid the deposit and I can't find the landlord online.

I think the Fringe is nearly always way better and way crapper than you ever remember. There are moments of magic (good reviews/cider and old friends) and moments of sheer horror (bad reviews/non-existent venues/rain/people covering your posters/loud drama students). Who knows what will go down?

Lolly Jones' 'I Believe in Merkels' is at Edinburgh Festival Fringe from 31st July - 25th August (not 14th) Tickets and more information:

Photo credit: Steve Ullathorne

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