House Of Blakewell are Harry Blake and Alice Keedwell, composer/songwriter and actor/singer respectively, and together an award winning cabaret duo who have won acclaim at venues and festivals across the land. This Festival they make the bold claim that 'We Can Make You Happy'. Yes, even on that rainy day when every show seems to be at the top of a hill, and you realise you've managed to book tickets for two shows that clash. We sat down with the duo to dissect the House, the show and happiness.

ThreeWeeks' Chris Cooke chats to Harry and Alice about their show here
Look out for the preview edition of ThreeWeeks arriving through the letterboxes of Edinburgh, and at all key Festival venues, over the next few days.

Inside: Stuart Bowden, Maddy Anholt, Linda Cattaneo, Karen Koren, Penny Ashton, Shelley Mitchell, The Dead Secrets, House Of Blakewell, LetLuce, Will Pickvance, Matthew Harvey, Jennie Benton Smith, Stewart Francis, Yianni, Andrew Ryan, Máire Clerkin, Chris Martin and 81 show recommendations.

Check out the online version or download a PDF copy here
It's the TW Podcast at the Edinburgh Festival. This week, with Festival 2015 kicking off next week, ThreeWeeks Co-Editor Chris Cooke chats to MJ Hibbett and Tez Ilyas about their brand new shows, plus enjoy a snippet of children's theatre production 'According To Arthur' and music from Simon Thacker.

Listen and subscribe to the TW Podcast here
As ThreeWeeks sets out to cover the Edinburgh Festival for the twentieth consecutive year, co-Founder and co-Editor Chris Cooke is also taking to the stage this August as part of the Fringe's spoken word programme. 'Chris Cooke's Free Speech' is a free speech about free speech, inspired by a session at the music conference Chris produces each May, CMU Insights @ The Great Escape. Here he explains more...

Check out Chris's ThreeWeeks column here
Promote your show online through an advert in the ThreeWeeks Daily email bulletin - essential reading for Festival-goers - daily rates are £25+VAT with hefty discounts for block bookings.

Advertise online on the ThreeWeeks website - either through a 300x250 box or 300x125 banner.

We are offering the 300x250 pixel banners on a daily tenancy - 25% share of the spot starts from £10+VAT each day. 300x125 banners on a daily tenancy with 50% of the spot starts from £15+VAT per day.

Again - we offer keen discounts on longer bookings with these adverts, so please email to discuss your booking.
As Caro gets busy digesting and dissecting the entire Edinburgh Festival programme each year, in order to make her many Three To See show recommendations, I tend to skip straight through to the venues section of the Fringe Programme, because you'll find some innovations in there too.

Anyone can perform at the Fringe, of course, and anywhere in the Festival city too, subject to the routine laws about such things, which means there is no formal vetting of the shows that get staged, and all sorts of spaces play host to all sorts of things.

That said, at the core of the Fringe there is a network of bigger venues, some year-round facilities, but most pop-up spaces run by Festival entrepreneurs who return each year with a new selection of shows. It's at the venues that some vetting does go on, with different venue enterprises specialising in different kinds of shows, making these complexes a useful way to navigate what's on offer.

And while the core Fringe venue brands are pretty constant, with an occasional newcomer, and while many of the core pop-up performance spaces re-pop-up each August, every year some of those venue enterprises find new buildings or spaces in which to build a stage. And one of the thrills each August is visiting those new theatres for the first time.

We spoke to four venues about their new developments this year – Underbelly, Space, C and Greenside – and will report on each one day by day this week. First up, Underbelly.

And while the Underbelly's vaults are a happy constant, the wider Underbelly enterprise has a new look this year, mainly because its previous hub in Bristo Square is not currently available, meaning the big purple cow will be parked instead in George Square Gardens. Meanwhile, just minutes away, the Underbelly team is building a brand new complex of venues on the Meadows where the focus will be very much on the ever evolving circus genre.

"We've worked on some big circus shows at the Festival in recent years", Stephen Makin of Underbelly Productions explains, "and we found that there's a tremendous appetite for it with punters, and yet not enough quality work in the programme. We wanted to change that".

Of course, the term 'circus' can evoke different visions in different people's minds. How does Makin define the genre? "It's founded in strong acrobatic core training, supplemented with different special disciplines – so Chinese pole, tightwire, Cyr wheel, teeterboard and aerial skills like silks, straps, rope... to name but a few. There are lots of different disciplines, and many more once you start fusing them together".

He goes on, "but, just like theatre, dance, or comedy, it then depends on how those skills are used. It doesn't have to have the familiar tropes of clowns, trapezes or big tops. And while you'll see those sorts of disciplines in circus shows, it's usually in a way that's a far cry from the big-top ringmaster circus of old. Circus can be narrative, dramatic, emotive, artistic and funny".

It does feel like circus has been reinventing itself in the UK of late. "It's finally managing to shed the old three-ring-circus stereotypes that it's often been pigeonholed into" Makin agrees. "That's one aspect of it. But there's so much more to it, and audiences are discovering just how exciting that is. Our aim is to present the breadth of everything that modern circus genre can be".

ThreeWeeks' Caro Moses returns to the cabaret Fringe to tip some late night lovelies.

Bebe+Luna Present... The Cabaret Farce! (pictured)
Bebe van der Belt and Luna Peach sound like a farce to be reckoned with (sorry, I couldn't resist the urge to go there) but quite frankly, when I read the blurb, they had me at 'kazoo'. Yet, so many allurements in addition to that; they promise a live band, lashings of sequins, an accordion, and possibly most winningly, spectacular pandemonium, chaos and catastrophe. Perhaps it could all go horribly wrong...? But my bet is that it will all go horribly right.
Momentum Venues @ St Stephens, from 5 until 30 Aug

Jo-Jo Bellini: This And That – A Late Night Tasty Delight
If you like food, and cabaret, and something a little different, I don't think you can go wrong with this delicious morsel from the lovely and talented Jo-Jo, who offers you a light supper, cooked live on stage, all whilst entertaining you with songs from the well regarded oeuvre of veteran singing star Tom Jones. Don't drag your feet about booking your tickets though; it's sure to be brilliant, bound to be popular, and is only on until the sixteenth – quick, before someone else gets your ticket.
The Stand Comedy Club 3 & 4, from 5 until 16 Aug

Ivy Paige: Filthy Rich
Fringe favourite Ivy Paige returns to the Festival with 'Filthy Rich', a "heady mix of cabaret, comedy and song". She's a favourite of the recently revived burlesque scene, though her brand of performance is along fairly traditional lines, by all accounts. She's certainly gone down a storm with our reviewers on occasion, and I see no reason why this August's show shouldn't be an absolute blast.
Underbelly, Cowgate, from 6 until 30 Aug
From the International Festival and Fringe programmes, three dance productions to see, as picked by ThreeWeeks Co-Editor Caro Moses.

Lo Real / Le Réel /The Real
If you know anything about me, though you very probably don't, you will know (or not know) that I am a huge fan of Flamenco and tend to be mildly suspicious of anyone that isn't, in the same way as I can't ever really trust people who take sugar in their tea. This show, which is on at the Edinburgh International Festival, is the work of hugely acclaimed choreographer Israel Galván, who here tells the story of the plight of the Roma and the Sinti peoples in fascist Spain during the 1930s and 40s. "He doesn't dance flamenco, he reinvents it", said one critic. Why on earth would you want to miss this?
Festival Theatre, from 19 until 21 Aug

Nijinksy's Last Jump (pictured)
This sounds like a very intriguing dance piece, and one which I feel might appeal to those who wouldn't necessarily think of themselves as dance fans, mainly because this describes itself as 'dance theatre' and seems to have a pretty clear narrative, dealing with the descent into mental illness of legendary dancer Vaslav Nijinsky. Plus, it's been created by an award winning team who are deeply passionate about their subject matter, and I can't help thinking that their expertise and passion will shine through.
Dance Base, from 7 until 23 Aug

This is a world premiere, brought to you by Cuban dance artists The Ballet Revolucion Company, who previously wowed audiences with their international hit show 'The Ballet Revolucion', in which classical and contemporary dancers joined forces to create explosive and intensive choreography backed by infectious Latin rhythms. 'Balletronic' is more of the exhilarating same, with a soundtrack featuring music by Avicii, Daft Punk, David Guetta, Sam Smith, Paloma Faith and Chopin...
Pleasance Courtyard, from 5 until 31 Aug
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