Who is Robert Lemon Alackadaddy? Well he’s certainly a geezer that’s done many a thing. And, well, he’s Phil Cornwell’s altered ego during the month of August. One of the UK’s best impressionists; his cult appearances including Stellar Street and Dead Ringers, as well as being the voice of Murdoc in the Gorillaz. The Fountain caught up with Phil to get the lowdown on his show and his plans for the Fringe.
TF: You are performing at the Edinburgh Fringe this year, how exciting?
Yes. A great frisson of anticipation is upon me.
TF: Alackadaddy sounds intriguing, what’s the premise?
Robert Lemon Alackadaddy is an alcoholic in denial. A fantasist of some stature. He is comfortable in his own discomfort. He is inhabited by many different characters. Bob takes us on a journey of mild disintegration.
TF: What drove the project, where did your influences lie?
I wrote the basic text of the piece about three or four years ago. It just spilled out of me. Then I decided I have to honour it by performing it. Last year I suddenly had the desire to put it out there. I met up with the wonderful Brett Vincent, comedy agent par excellence, and it appears I’m doing Edinburgh. Doh! I will let the audience decide what my influences are. To me Alackadaddy is Theatre of the absurd.
TF: Any tips or musts for first time performers?
Yes. Try and enjoy it and let go of any thoughts of outcomes. Perform for its own sake. Honour what you’re doing. That’s it. I offer that advice to myself as well any rookies.
TF: Have you been to the Fringe before?
A good few times over the years. I first appeared there in an awful musical piece called Rock Tartuffe in 1983. I returned in 1986, 87, doing impressions. Then in 89 in a comedy piece I wrote with my mate Rick Stone called The Worrying World of Whacket and Buzzard. In 1991 Rick and I had a success with our play Once Upon a Time in Tottenham Hale involving Billy and Dave, two characters we’d been doing on the Steve Wright Show. My last foray was an impressions set in 2010.
TF: Is there anything you are keen to see whilst in Edinburgh?
Probably. I shall do a reconnaissance when I’m there.
TF: What are your future plans beyond Alackadaddy?
Hmm. Now…there’s a thing. I hope to access some more entertaining insanity from my fevered nut. Please God there will be more. Watch this space…obviously not all the time because I realise you will have to do other things.
You can see Phil Cornwell: Alackadaddy at Underbelly, Bristo Square from 31st July – 26th August (Not 12th) at 16:15. For tickets, please visit www.edfringe.com