Dan Schreiber is one of the 'QI elves' to which Stephen Fry often refers on the popular BBC panel show, helping dig up the trivia and misconceptions that form the heart of the show. But you might know that already if you're a 'QI' fan, because Schreiber is one of the regulars on the show's spin-off podcast that launched earlier this year, 'No Such Thing As Fish'. And he also works with QI creator John Lloyd on the radio show 'The Museum Of Curiosity' , a programme he helped conceive and co-produces.

But away from the elving and curious museum producing, Schreiber also performs stand-up, and this year brings his first full hour show to the Fringe, 'Cockblocked From Outer Space'. We caught up with the man himself to talk 'QI', the most amazing of facts, and what we can expect from his debut Fringe show. Click here to read the interview.
Ah, the Edinburgh Comedy Award, 34 years old this summer. Yep, once again a team of laugh connoisseurs will be roaming the city checking out all the laugh-makers in a bid to identify the very best. And the new best. And the Panel Prize deserving best.

But who are these laugh connoisseurs you all surely ask? Well, this year's judging panel was announced yesterday, with journalists Mark Monahan, Alex Hardy and Alice Jones of the Telegraph, Times and Independent respectively, telly comedy types Sam Bryant, Liz Lewin and Lindsay Hughes from the BBC, Channel 4 and Baby Cow, and the director of the Leicester Comedy Festival Geoff Rowe. Plus three punters picked from a punter-picking poll, in the form of Kathy Bell, Tim O'Connor and Patrick Nicholls.

Awards overseer Nica Burns is quoted by the British Comedy Guide as saying: "2014 promises to be another wonderful Fringe, with comedy for everyone, whatever your taste and budget. Just as we were saying that comedy at the Fringe couldn't get any bigger, we have even more shows to judge than last year. Another bumper year with a staggering 642 eligible shows! The free show strand is an amazing 15% bigger with over 823 fringe shows listed in the fringe programme".

She went on: "Excitingly, the pioneering 2013 double win from the extraordinary talents of Bridget Christie for Best Comedy Show and Adrienne Truscott in the Panel Prize, whose extremely funny shows combined laughter with serious ideas, has inspired a leap in the comedy shows performed by women: up by 70 shows from last year to 183 which is a stonking 62% increase. There's nothing like a role model, let alone two!"

So that's all good news. Shortlists for this year's awards will be published on 20 Aug, with the winners crowned at a lunchtime ceremony on 23 Aug. I wonder if Jim Davison is eligible.
And so to our second instalment of picks from the musicals section of the Fringe, and this time ThreeWeeks Co-Editor Caro Moses has selected a trio of productions that fall into the category 'adaptations'. Well, almost.

Ernest, Or Much Ado About Muffins

I have a weakness for Wilde, it probably has something to do with the fact that I played Lady Bracknell in a school production of 'The Importance Of Being Ernest' at a very impressionable age. I am, furthermore, mildly obsessed by cucumber sandwiches (completely delicious with a nice cup of tea) and also things yesteryear (though I don't especially want to live there; imagine life without the internet now. Imagine it. Not pretty, is it?). Anyway, this, as you may have gathered, is a songified version of Wilde's arguably most famous work, that most witty comedy of unlikely coincidences. Mmmm. Cucumber sandwiches.
C cubed, from 31 Jul to until 25 Aug. Tickets here.

The Odyssey: An Epic Musical Epic!

Talking of quality school productions (and it was, believe me), this next show is a school production, but it's from a big school, with a lot of talented young people in it, so I am going to take a chance on this latest outing from Audacious Productions. You all know the story. Odysseus wants to get home, but the gods aren't on his side, and a whole lot of distractions get thrown his way. This production claims to be a comedic and frenetic take on Homer's time honoured tale, so actually, it might be a good thing for all you folk who think that classics are boring. You know who you are.
C, from 31 Jul until until 9 Aug. Tickets here.

The Girl Who

Okay, not sure this qualifies strictly as an adaptation, but it is inspired by the classic 'Choose Your Own Adventure' books. Remember those? The ones where you read a bit then it gives you the option of going to either page 17 or page 64...? So, it's a bit like that, except that instead of a reader being in control of where the story goes, it's the entire audience at any given performance; Anna is searching for her parents, and you get to choose how she finds them. This new musical has been created by an award winning team – Scott Gilmour and Claire McKenzie of Noisemaker Productions, responsible for last year's 5/5 'Freak Show', again working with Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, so you can feel pretty sure that this is going to be a good use of your time.
Assembly George Square Gardens, from 1 Aug until 25 Aug. Tickets here.
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