Comedy of the week: Steve Hughes, various venues

Wielding a far bigger stick than he ever did in his days as a heavy-metal drummer, Steve Hughes sets off on the scent of social and political scheming on his latest tour, While It's Still Legal.

Yes: John Bishop £50,000

Corporate gigs: Which comedians take the funny money?

Many comics pay their way with corporate gigs, says Veronica Lee. But they’re not for everyone...

Clowning around: Edinburgh Comedy Award winner Phil Burgers' workshops are a hit with fellow comedians

With stand-up dominated by the one-comic-and-a mic-form of observational humour, it's little wonder that some comedians are seeking more alternative modes of expression to set themselves apart. The Boy with Tape On His Face distinguishes himself with a joyously retro presentation of silent, performance-led humour, while the bestowal of the Edinburgh Comedy Award on Phil Burgers last year, for his mute, sexualised and playfully scary bouffon Dr Brown, echoed and endorsed the stand-up circuit's burgeoning interest in clowning.

Comedian Lenny Henry: 'Richard Pryor will always be my hero'

Ahead of a new documentary on the groundbreaking funny man, Lenny Henry tells how he idolised – and copied – the star

My Edinburgh: Doc Brown, comedian

I feel something of a sham writing a piece on "My Edinburgh" this year. I am "doing" Edinburgh, a bit like Prince Harry "did" Glastonbury. I spent the first three quarters of the fest doing my fair share of sweating – mainly from the searing heat of the Caribbean, blogging for the Jamaica Tourist Board (those blogs don't write themselves) while my comic peers risked trenchfoot and mouldy lungs in the squalid basements of dampridden Scottish boozers. And now I rock up for the final week, rolling out my new show with the type of positive energy one feels after a vigorous massage.

Lost in laughter: the audience at a stand-up gig

Judging a comedy award is no laughing matter

Jokes about racism, porn, cystitis... you get all sorts on the Fringe. But how do you spot the next big thing in stand-up? Alice Jones, a judge on this year's Edinburgh Comedy Awards panel, explains

Dan Skinner

My Edinburgh: Dan Skinner on the wonderful, glorious, unholy mess that is the Fringe

The Edinburgh festival is like the Death Star. You can try and escape, but you are eventually, inevitably, dragged back in by its powerful magnetic force. I am preparing to ‘go up’ again, to use the industry parlance. I decided two years ago that I wouldn’t for a good long while, but I went up last year as a punter and I’m going up again this year to perform in a show called Classic Entertainment Starring Mr Winchester and Tommy! Since you’re asking. It’s on at The Pleasance at 8.20. Since you’re asking.

Comedy of the week: Bridget Christie, The Stand, Edinburgh

Bridget Christie was ready to give up on stand-up last year, but thank goodness she didn't.

Labour adviser turned stand-up comedian Matt Forde

Acerbic Ed Miliband jokes have Jack Straw rolling in the aisles

The Labour adviser turned stand-up Matt Forde came face-to-face with one of his subjects when Jack Straw showed up at his show this week. "I was just kicking my shoes off in my dressing room after the show and the former Foreign Secretary popped his head around the door", he said.

Bo Burnham

My Edinburgh: Bo Burnham on changing venues and the Golden Age of the Fringe

What a shame. A lot has changed at the Edinburgh Fringe since 2010 (the last year I was here). Three years can do foul damage to things like comedy festivals and milk. I'm sure most of you reading this are too young to remember the year of 2010, but I can assure you, those were the good ol' days.

Paul Merton

My Edinburgh: Paul Merton - At least I haven't been beaten up this year

I have been coming to the Edinburgh Fringe for 29 years and I've had some dramatic times. In 1986, I was attacked in the street as I helped Neil Mullarkey from the Comedy Store Players to put up posters. We were in the wrong place at the wrong time - midnight - and we were English. I got kicked in the head. Then in 1987 I broke my leg playing football, which led to a blood clot on my lung. And then I contracted Hepatitis A, which the doctor told me I probably caught from the hospital food. It was a pretty grim place then.

My Village and Other Aliens, by Terence Blacker

My Edinburgh: Terence Blacker on white lies and shark-infested waters at the Fringe

It’s great. No, really, the show couldn’t be going better. In fact, the main problem is keeping up with the demand for tickets.

Jessie Cave

My Edinburgh: Jessie Cave on Stand-Up School, migraines and unique star ratings

I am doing 20 stand-up gigs during this festival which will bring my stand-up gig total to 34 and a half. I am thinking of it as Stand-Up School. I am not comfortable telling people I am trying stand-up because to me that implies confidence. I'm - well, I'm not.

Comedian John Lloyd whose Liff of QI is at Underbelly Bristo Square

My Edinburgh: John Lloyd is having the time of his Liff

The Fringe is a bit like a day at the races, 26 days in a row. Thrills, spills, wild fun, impossible glamour, terrible disappointment, tearing up your ticket, getting caught in the rain, drinking till you can't take any more, laughing till you cry – you may even find love if you're lucky.

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