Edinburgh Festival 1993: Apparently . . .

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The Independent Culture
HONESTLY, it's the biggest theatrical festival in the country and all some people can do is watch telly. For the first time in the festival that that rowdy schmooze-venue, the Assembly Rooms Club Bar, was silenced on Thursday: not by a burst of opera or Georgian folk song (both of which have unexpectedly rung out across the beer-stained tables this festival) but by a small, flickering black-and-white TV on which Dot Cotton was smoking her last EastEnders fag. Cotton herself, in the shape of actress June Brown (director and star of Matthew Westwood's Double D at Assembly), was at the centre of the group in the kind of party dress seldom seen in this bar. Tears, laughter and champagne were spilled over the sandwiches, which is more than one can say for most Fringe shows.

LAST Saturday's story on this page about Simon Godley's beneath-the- scenes role as Frank, the man who buries himself in Arthur Smith's Sod - where he complained of flea-bites - reached at least one sympathetic reader. Godley arrived at the Pleasance on Wednesday to find a shoebox- sized package containing all manner of bug-killer. The sender? His mum.

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