A stand-up game show. If you remember MSN and video game soundtracks from the 90s, then you won’t forget this show. Daniel Nicholas, takes you on a journey to work out whether nostalgia is actually a good thing. It includes a game where everyone has to pretend to be sick and gets fed Jaffa Cakes. That’s right. Daniel Nicholas spoke with The Fountain about his inspiration behind the show.
TF: Lessons in Nostalgia certainly sounds intriguing, what is the premise?
It’s essentially a stand up game show about nostalgia, and what lessons there are to learn from it. It’s mostly audience games for an hour, with subtle social commentary. There’s a game called ‘Get your balls out’ which looks at gender inequality, and a dating game show which looks at veganism.
TF: And what drove the project, where did your influences lie?
Serious answer – I originally wanted to make a show about Brexit, as I knew because it would be a hot relevant topic, that it would probably sell tickets, but in making the show I realised a lot of the reasoning behind Brexit and the events that had taken place could be linked to nostalgia, I then became interested in how to say something on a bigger scale whilst linking it back to more personal experiences of my own, and completely avoid talking about Brexit at the same time as there will be saturation.
I’ve been doing a lot of audience interaction in my stand up sets generally, and wanted to take it further, and see if I could create a show, which at the heart of it is silly and fun, trying to get across a feeling that although everyone entered the room as strangers but will leave as friends. I think theatremaker Jamie Wood is great at that, and everything Barbra Nice does is gold, it’s just fun silly comedy, but can make you think afterwards.
Non serious answer – just wanted to play audience games soundtracked by videos games I loved as a child.
TF: What are your plans for the Fringe, having been before are there any tips or musts you would offer to first-time performers?
I think getting an Oink and going to Piemaker are near the top of the list of things I’m looking forward to doing in Edinburgh.
Generally though my advice to new people would be to pace yourself, it’s so easy to go out every night, because every night is Friday night in Edinburgh. But if you’re there for the full thing then you’ll burn out after the first week, last year I got food poisoning in my first week, which inevitably meant that I didn’t go out, that said by the time I got to the end of the second week I was still feeling fresh.
So that would be my big recommendation – get food poisoning in the first week.
We’re doing the Edinburgh Fringe Tamagotchi Challenge this year to raise awareness of taking care of yourself at the Fringe, look out for ten Tamagotchi being passed around the Fringe and appearing on Social Media with the hashtag #tamageddon.
TF: And what are your future plans beyond Lessons in Nostalgia?
I’m toying with ideas for other audience interaction led shows, and currently have a show in development ‘Eugene’, which is set at a product launch of the first superhuman A.I, which leads to disaster. It’s like a Ted Talk meets the Terminator featuring Steve Jobs.
Lessons in Nostalgia runs from 1st – 25th August (not the 12th), Just the Tonic at The Caves, 14: 15