Comedy Academy 4 Kids

Bongo Club, Edinburgh, Sat 17 Mar


It’s a well-worn sentiment that kids say the funniest things, but James Campbell has taken that to a whole new level. Campbell is known for his child-friendly humour and has now brought his Comedy Academy to Edinburgh, with the successful London course having spread the trend throughout the UK. The idea is that anyone aged 7-13 can have a bash behind the mic, and learn how to improve their technique. The result is magical. Encouraging without being patronising, organiser Melissa O’Brien and assistant Isobel Adams chat about what comedy is, what you can get away with and how to get those creative juices going. Then it’s practical time, with games to spark ideas generating more original material than most open mic nights offer.

Free from preconceptions and buoyed up by the giggly atmosphere, the kids launch into the weirdest tales of teachers, exploding heads and, of course, farting. The price tag, £90 for three sessions, might seem steep, but there is a lot for mum and dad’s money. Upon finishing the course, the Academy graduates have the chance to perform at a comedy night, alongside professional comedians. Considering stand-up is an area that leaves most grown-ups quaking, this will always attract the cockier breed of youngling. But it’ll teach them discipline in their humour and make them confident on stage from a frighteningly early age. Provided you manage to drag them off-stage occasionally, that has to be a good thing.

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