Edinburgh Q&A.

Fringe Q&A: What do your parents think?

We asked some of the comedians heading up to the Fringe how many times their parents have seen them perform. Some acts have very supportive mums and dads it would appear... but not everyone in this list can say that.

To find out about more about any shows mentioned here, click on the headline.


Adam Rowe: Undeniable. Adam Rowe.Adam Rowe

My mum passed away before she ever got to see me perform, which is sad because she's the person who got me interested in comedy. My Dad has seen me around 10-15 times and he loves it, apart from whenever I'm talking about something he's said or done. He's an idiot, but he doesn't want people to know that.

Ali Brice's Lemonade Stand. Ali Brice.Ali Brice

They've seen me somewhere between 10 - 20 times. They mostly enjoy it, I think. Although the last time they saw me I was doing an Edinburgh preview and I cut my finger quite badly with a knife whilst slicing a lemon in two. The show ended there - although I had 45 minutes left to do. I wouldn't say it was my proudest moment. Or theirs! I've banned them from coming to all future previews.

...What the Frick?!. Alice Frick.Alice Frick

They have seen me a few times when I lived in Austria but haven't seen me every since I moved to London... I think my parents would be okay with it, but I am glad my grandmother doesn't speak English and will never get the chance to see me, because I think that would give her a few heart attacks.

Andrew Sim: You Gotta Find Joy. Andrew Sim.Andrew Sim

I've been doing material for seven years about how my mother left my dad for a woman. He comes to every gig he can and is the most supportive parent in the world.

Andrew White: Coming of Age. Andrew White.Andrew White

They see me all the time, and especially as I started before I could drive, they were often my chaperone! Dad loves comedy, and I think is more interested in seeing the other acts. Mum is supportive and enjoys my shows, but isn't the best person for post-gig analysis... "Everyone laughed at that bit, for some reason?"

Andy Storey: Awkward. Andy Storey.Andy Storey

As a child I always used to answer the front door in a Frank Spencer voice. "I am he!" My parents have always supported the 'Frank Spencer boy' in all his endeavours and disguises.

Anna Morris: Bombastic. Anna Morris.Anna Morris

They love it. My Dad heckled me once and I called him a c**t. To be fair it was when I was playing a character who was a trainee student stand-up. She asked the audience for heckles so she could practice responses. My Dad panicked because no-one else had shouted something yet so he said I was shit. Sadly the scripted line back was to call him a c**t. He hasn't heckled me since...

Archie Maddocks: Matchstick. Archie Maddocks.Archie Maddocks

My dad's seen me a few times, and it terrifies him every time that I'm going to die or get heckled so he becomes a quivering mess of a man. My mum has seen me twice - the first words of feedback she offered: "Well done. You're disgusting and puerile".

Brain Rinse. Mike Raffone.Brain Rinse

Sadly my parents are no longer with us, but they did used to see quite a lot of stuff that I did. I recently discovered that my dad was more of a fan of my work than I gave him credit for. At the family home I discovered a scrapbook that he kept with press cuttings for virtually every show that I was ever in. He never told me about it when he was alive... typical dad!

Bryony Twydle: Flamingo. Bryony Twydle.Bryony Twydle

My parents have seen me too many times to count. Once they were the only audience I had. My mum isn't so keen on some of my characters being based on people that she knows, which is why she has a particular aversion to the sex therapist character. My dad still hasn't cottoned on.

Claire Ford: Unboxed. Claire Ford.Claire Ford

My parents passed away before I started to do shows and so now I have the added benefit of saying anything I like about them. 'Never speak ill of the dead unless it's for the purposes of a Fringe show' is my motto.

Darren Walsh: Massive Punt. Darren Walsh.Darren Walsh

My dad has seen me once and said 'It's just nothing... but with people laughing". My Mum says "Are you still enjoying it?"

They're both called Pat. They divorced and my Dad lives abroad now, so I suppose you could say he's an ex-Pat.

Dave Maher Coma Show. Dave Maher.Dave Maher

My parents have seen me perform countless times, and they've seen this show twice. My dad told me years ago that I shouldn't be famous because he didn't think I could handle the pressure. When he saw my show, he told me I was more of an asshole as a kid than I portray.

Enter the Dragons.Enter the Dragons

They're no longer around, but both our Dads would be thrilled. They were both quite showbiz-y. Abigail's Dad was a magician, he presented Candid Camera and was also Larry Grayson and Keith Harris' agent. Emma's Dad managed a casino so, although he'd come and see shows, he worked nights and would usually fall asleep pretty promptly, snore extremely loudly, then give a standing ovation at the end.

Evelyn Mok: Bubble Butt. Evelyn Mok.Evelyn Mok

Collectively my parents have seen me perform twice. My dad came along, unannounced, to my second ever gig and he brought along my aunt and cousin who had just come from Hong Kong for a holiday. They had no idea of what was going on and just clapped along whenever the other audience members applauded.

My father is a funny man and really up for having a laugh and was so thrilled to be at a comedy night that in his excitement ended up chipping in whenever the MC was on, which she interpreted as heckling, so at my second ever gig I had to watch my father get torn apart by the MC for heckling, and then he had to sit through his daughter bombing her gig. My aunt and cousin just applauded along. It was an awkward night for all of us.

The Problem With Faye Treacy. Faye Treacy.Faye Treacy

Zero. My mum has come up to Edinburgh once, to watch Christian O'Connell.. because that's what she thinks stand-up is.

Felicity Ward: Busting a Nut. Felicity Ward.Felicity Ward

So many times. I love having them in because I never know which jokes they're going to heckle with corrections.

First World Problems. Image shows from L to R: Anna J, Andy Quirk.First World Problems

Andy Quirk: My dad's seen me enough that last year during our show when we announced the next track we were doing he turned to his friend and said clearly for everyone to hear, "Ah, this is the good one". Cheers dad!

Flo & Joan: Alive on Stage. Image shows from L to R: Nicola Dempsey, Rosie Dempsey.Flo & Joan

The first year we did Edinburgh Fringe our mum came up for ten days and watched our show nine times. Last year she came up for twelve days and watched it twice. This year we have a feeling she is coming, but she hasn't mentioned anything about it or our show yet... so there's your answer.

Foxdog Studios: Robot Chef. Image shows from L to R: Lloyd Henning, Peter Sutton.Foxdog Studios

They've seen us a few times. They mainly wonder when we'll be moving back home.

Twat Out of Hell. Gary G Knightley.Gary G Knightley

My dad is the reason for my comedy: he gave me his little man syndrome but then I grew to be 6"2. Imagine all that rage and need to prove yourself in a man my size! So my show makes him angry, but what else is new? My Mum is usually a very quiet, respectable lady but she actually heckled me at one of my previews! To be fair, if anyone is allowed to heckle me it's the woman who gave birth to my massive ego.

Glenn Moore: Glenn Glenn Glenn, How Do You Like It, How Do You Like It. Glenn Moore.Glenn Moore

They've seen me live, twice. I 'think' they're just about ok with it, but I don't really know what their understanding of comedy is. Before my first Fringe I told my mum I was nervous about hecklers, and she assured me I wouldn't get any. About three shows in I got heckled (I asked the audience if there were any Glenns in, and a voice yelled out 'Yeah, you'. Rubbish as heckles go), and when I looked into the audience to see who it was, it was my mum. I asked her afterwards why she'd done that, and it turns out she didn't know that's what heckling was. Thanks, mum.

Hans - Like a German.Hans

Oh please! My mother is cabaret's Kris Jenner! She is the kind of stage mum who would make Tonya Harding's own mother proud! She actually sews all of the costumes I wear in my show and, lets face it, this is a look only a mother could be proud of!

Harry and Chris Save the World. Image shows from L to R: Chris Read, Harry Baker.Harry & Chris

Between the four of them (not to brag) they've seen us hundreds of times. When Harry's mum came to the show she said, "Harry, when you sing, you realise how good Chris is at singing."

Ivan Aristeguieta: Juithy. Ivan Aristeguieta.Ivan Aristeguieta

My father is a psychiatrist and my mother is a psychologist. They have seen me perform a couple of times. They are proud on how I deal with my issues through comedy, they wish their patients were more like me.

Jack Barry: Tango. Jack Barry.Jack Barry

My parents have been to see every one of my shows. In the past I think they used to find watching me horrifically awkward, they'd usually have pained grimaces on their faces whenever I looked out at them. They seem to have relaxed a bit, now they've realised I can do comedy. However, my show this year is about how I've been counselling them through difficulties in their marriage, so that awkwardness might return.

Jacob Hawley: Howl. Jacob Hawley.Jacob Hawley

3 times. Mum likes it because I smile. We all ignore the references to drug abuse when we have a drink afterwards.

Jen Brister - Meaningless. Jen Brister.Jen Brister

My mum has seen me perform loads of times. She thinks I'm the funniest person on the planet, but she also eats raw garlic in a sandwich so she might not be the go-to person when it comes to 'taste'.

Just These, Please.Just These, Please

Several times. They like the jokes about Bags for Life and the HR department of Jesus' disciples. They're less keen when we dress up as vaginas and physically embody the act of intercourse.

Lolly Jones: Fifty Shades of May. Lolly Jones.Lolly Jones

In previous years, I have banned my mum from watching any of my stand-up shows. She was my Sunday School teacher and is easily offended. So I thought what better way to break her in than by watching my burlesque debut? She did ask 'who wants to see their daughter taking their clothes off?' and the only answer I could think of was 'Donald Trump'.

Maddie Campion: 20 Uses for a Lovedoll. Maddie Campion.Maddie Campion

I absolutely died the first time my mum saw me. She didn't even pretend it went well... just very matter-of-factly said to me "well.... I can see why you might enjoy doing it". Both my parents have seen me since at the Fringe and it's gone a lot better. Last year they also saw David McIver's show and loved it so bloody much they might as well get tattoos saying "we heart David McIcver".

Songs Of Smut And Sparkle. Marcia D'Arc.Marcia D'Arc

My dad died 9 years ago, I suspect with the express intention of never having to see me perform. My mum refuses to see me perform, or to admit the resemblance between the two of us when I'm in drag!

Pity Laughs: A Tale of Two Gays. Image shows from L to R: Simon Marsh, Will Dalrymple.Mark Brittlestone & Will Dalrymple

Will's mum came to see our 2017 show. She said afterwards: "I wouldn't say I found it funny, but I was very proud that you remembered all of your lines." What higher praise could two comedians expect?

Micky Overman: Role Model. Micky Overman.Micky Overman

Oh they love it, sure. The last time my dad saw me perform, he came home and said to my mum: "It's a lot of sex stuff, but I guess we all do it!" Which is amazing and also the most Dutch commentary I could have imagined.

Myq Kaplan: All Killing Aside. Myq Kaplan.Myq Kaplan

I don't know the exact number, but since they're divorced with equal custody, I'll say they have seen an equal number of shows. My mum has always been supportive. My dad was more concerned at first, wondering how I would make a living. Eventually it happened though, and he started really supporting me when he realised he wouldn't have to really be supporting me.

Nathan Lang: The Stuntman. Nathan Lang.Nathan Lang

My mother- and father-in-law come from Glasgow to see me every year. Last year they saw my sketch comedy show (Jon & Nath Like To Party, playing again this year) and gave their discerning thumbs up, except for the bit where I ejaculate in Jon's face.

Nathaniel Metcalfe: Chameleon, Comedian, Corinthian and Caricature. Nathaniel Metcalfe.Nathaniel Metcalfe

Once. They came to see me at the Hackney Empire when I was in the New Act of the Year Final in 2010. I like to think now that whenever I tell them I'm doing a gig they imagine it's in a 1,300 seater theatre.

Nick Dixon: Marriage Material. Nick Dixon.Nick Dixon

ZERO. Though one of my dad's mates told him he'd seen my Comedy Central clip and it was good. So that's something. Unless you grew up in a commune and your name is 'Leaf', your parents don't want you to be a stand-up comedian.

Onstage Dating. Bron Batten.Onstage Dating

I created a show called Sweet Child of Mine with my parents about what they think I do for a living. I toured and performed it with my dad for five years. He recently told me he still has no idea what I do.

Show Up. Peter Michael Marino.Peter Michael Marino

My parents have seen me perform more times than my agent. So, maybe twice?

Phil Ellis Is Ready for the Big Time. Phil Ellis.Phil Ellis

They come to my Edinburgh shows every year at least twice during the festival and often come to bigger shows I do all over the country. This isn't a funny answer but they're genuinely the most supportive parents you could wish for. They also do all the Funz And Gamez merchandise so if you have a mug that's missing a few letters now, take it up with them.

Pierre Novellie: See Novellie, Hear Novellie, Speak Novellie. Pierre Novellie.Pierre Novellie

Quite a few! They eccentrically decided to see one of my shows twice - it blew their minds how much the audience changed it, how the pinnacle of one night can get no laughs the next. I've turned them into comedy nerds and may God have mercy on my soul. As far as I'm aware, they think I am "entertaining".

Richard Soames: Let's Make a Movie. Richard Soames.Richard Soames

I once did a show with my good friend The Story Beast (whose show is also in Edinburgh this year). It was in the village where I grew up and my parents left their home to "go on an impromptu holiday". I think that tells you all you need to know.

Rik Carranza: Still A Fan. Rik Carranza.Rik Carranza

My dad has only ever watched clips online but says he's proud. My mum has seen me once. Apparently I'm adopted.

Rob Oldham: Worm's Lament. Rob Oldham.Rob Oldham

Lots, around 10 or 20 I'd say. They are very kind, although my dad once referred to part of my show as 'good, funny, not like ha-ha funny though', which was devastating.

Robin Morgan: Honeymoon. Robin Morgan.Robin Morgan

They have NEVER seen me perform. They've heard my stand-up on the radio. The opening joke was about 'Mum's affair'. The comment they made was that they enjoyed the music during the credits. Hi Kev and Sue!

Ross Brierley: Accumulator. Ross Brierley.Ross Brierley

They come ALL.THE.TIME. My mother is an enthusiastic supporter and regularly comments on not only my performance but of the other acts on the bill. I'm regularly amazed by who she enjoys. My dad comes just as often but barely laughs and offers little to no feedback. Which is standard.

Russ Peers: Hereditary Peers. Russ Peers.Russ Peers

They've never seen me perform but they still think I'm brilliant and doing very well myself. If they ever do see me perform they may, of course, be appalled and demand I get a proper job.

Scientology: The Musical. George Glass.Scientology: The Musical

Our parents have seen every performance. Last year our guitarists parents flew from Australia to surprise him on opening night. There were tears. Real salty tears.

Simon Caine: Sex, Drugs and Other Things I Never Do. Simon Caine.Simon Caine

My mum dislikes comedy, and the last time she saw me said that the show "wasn't as long as last time" which I think was meant positively.

Sindhu Vee: Sandhog. Sindhu Vee.Sindhu Vee

My mother - she's seen me thrice - is very impressed because, according to her, "on stage you become a confident and interesting person. It is an amazing transformation". My father has seen me once and it was the 2nd worst gig of my life. Stone cold death for 20 minutes. My dad said "child, perhaps your humour was not the same as this audience". My mother was there too and she said "this audience knows a shit, they were poxy puppies of leperous bitches (direct translation from Hindi) so don't care what they think.".

Sisters: On Demand. Image shows from L to R: Mark Jones, Christy White-Spunner.Sisters

Not many. This year Mark's are coming to Edinburgh to see it but have informed us they'll be 15 minutes late as they are seeing Mr Swallow beforehand. At least they have good taste.

Stephen Bailey: Our Kid. Stephen Bailey.Stephen Bailey

FOUR - my dad doesn't think I'm funny then asks my audience if they want a selfie with him.

Adulting. Tash York.Tash York

Heaps actually. I even make my mum buy tickets now to prove that she really loves me. I even got in contact with my dad that I had never met after 24 years, and got him to come. Bums on seats people.

Tom Houghton: The Honourable. Tom Houghton.Tom Houghton

My parents have seen me perform about 6 times now. We have a rule, no previews. They don't need to see me spouting rubbish to my mates in a pub. In general they are immensely proud. One of my routines is about avoiding being spanked as a kid by pretending to enjoy it. My father's not too keen on that one.

Tom Ward: Popcorn Lung. Tom Ward.Tom Ward

Never. She's not allowed (the one that's alive). The dead father may be watching but I've never felt his presence. The mum one has seen videos but I had to skip too many bits and cough over too many words. It was too stressful trying to preserve her private 1950's utopia and protect her from the real me.

Tori Scott Is #Thirsty. Tori Scott.Tori Scott

My mum loves to come to my shows in New York. I was a little nervous the first time she saw the show because I will sometimes make a joke at her expense. I apologised to her immediately after and she laughed and said "I love it! I love the attention!" Like mother like daughter.