Introducing uniquely talented wunderkind Ben Fogg with his debut hour which is set to storm the Pleasance Courtyard this year, a modestly titled magnum opus “How I Won Best Newcomer 2017’.
“A once in a lifetime chance to see the greatest living comic of every generation as Fogg delivers a pant-wetting, heart-warming, pole-stiffening watermelon of a show.”
– BEN FOGG, 2017
Fogg promises the show will be the sleeper hit of the Fringe…if by ‘sleeper’ he means ‘heavily-promoted’ and by ‘hit’ he means ‘crippling financial black hole.’
Like West Coast hip hop, Fogg started making waves in the 90’s, but unlike many of his peers he survived the game. This is a rags-to-riches-to-rags tale of a child genius coming to terms with adulthood; a show about pride, failure, family, never giving up, luck and, most of all, about the real meaning of success.
Having been on the stand-up circuit long enough to spot the business end of a microphone, Fogg grew tired of saying the same thing every night and ran away to train in long form improvisation at Second City in Chicago, whose notable luminaries include Bill Murray, Tina Fey and Amy Poehler. His debut hour brings together everything he’s learned in a whirlwind of one-liners, outrageous set pieces and carefully crafted chaos.
This show isn’t merely a series of thoughts and observations presented from behind the safety of a microphone. This is a life lived out loud, in full view of the audience. The Fogg we see on stage is both real and imagined. He’s a loud, arrogant, idiot of a man and yet we root for him to succeed. Maybe it’s his dogged determination, maybe it’s his warm, winning (sometimes hugging) way with an audience, or maybe it’s just that the world loves an arsehole.
Fogg is a man on a mission: to find the point where pure joy meets absolute truth and change the face of entertainment in the process. This show not only tears up the rulebook of live comedy, it panics, gets out sticky tape, organises all the pieces, tries to stick them back together, fails, cries, then rallies in the nick of time and wins major awards*.
It’s a deliberate blurring of almost every boundary going. He doesn’t so much break down the fourth wall as build it right in front of the audience, mashing-up a traditional stand-up show with a cinematic narrative arc, and creating a hybrid comedy shape as unpredictable as it is hilarious. From his maniacal Stalinist grandmother to his passion for outlandish headgear, Fogg’s life seems too incredible to be true and yet…why would anyone make up the fact that they were banned from Hammersmith Town Hall for fighting a 70-year-old man?
A film producer at 17, manager of a New York rock band at 20, award-winning film director hobnobbing with Meryl Streep by 25, Fogg threw it all away to pursue his comedy dream…a dream that may very well be shattered live on stage every night this August.
Ever since his humble beginnings on the mean streets of North Ealing, Fogg has always been certain that he was destined for greatness. His primary school maths teacher, Mrs. Jackson, probably sensing that he was already a fully formed genius, memorably described him as ‘absolutely unteachable’
A promising career in academia beckoned but Fogg knew he was meant for greater things. He left school at 17 with nothing but raw talent, razor-sharp wit, and the shirt on his back, intent on becoming the world’s greatest/richest comic. He then put on trousers because people were staring.
His (fully clothed) rise was meteoric. Just a year later Fogg became the youngest ever associate producer in American television history. He bought a beautiful house, a classic car, a very natty set of black roll neck sweaters, and proceeded to take the film world by storm in both London and New York.
He smashed out an incredible string of miniseries that those fools at Netflix would kill to have made: Merlin (feat. Sam Neill), Gulliver’s Travels (feat. Ted Danson), and The Magical Legend of Leprechauns (feat. Whoopi Goldberg as a soul singing fairy queen). 100% classy entertainment. If you were watching TV on a bank holiday in the 2000’s, then you’ve been touched by this guy, and you almost definitely enjoyed it.
But simply producing masterpieces wasn’t enough. Fogg wanted complete creative control. In 2005 he won a scholarship to study Directing at the National School of Film and Television and in 2007 he set up his own production company Shaven Ape Ltd. He then wrote and sold a feature film script tightly based on his own incredible life for a frankly stupid sum of money and then, without warning, he disappeared from public view**. This is his story…
**The only fact we know is that Fogg was, at one point in 2011, the 12th best championship manager player in the world and that’s actually true. Ask him, provided you’re ready to talk imaginary sports for 3-4 hours.
@benfogg | www.shavenape.tv
For more information please contact Impressive PR on 0207 284 3444
Mel Brown: firstname.lastname@example.org / 07802 796769