IdeasTap Underbelly Award 2015

Underbelly Cowgate

Underbelly Cowgate

Earlier this year I was delighted to win the 2015 IdeasTap Underbelly Award with my one-man show The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Family. The award received 204 applications and I was lucky enough to be among an 11-strong shortlist, which saw Polly Tisdall and I travel to IdeasTap HQ in London to pitch to a panel. I performed an extract from the show and threw some props and cardboard signs around the room and generally made a big mess, Polly pressed play on iTunes, we talked a little bit of money-turkey, and then we left. And 5 days later we got the call!*

This is exciting for a number of reasons: it means we can do the Fringe ‘properly’, with comprehensive marketing and PR support; it means we are in an amazing, high-profile venue (Underbelly’s Big Belly on Cowgate); it means we can run for the entire festival (6-30 August) and showcase the work to as many people as possible; and IdeasTap is closing on 2nd June, so it’s an enormous – if bittersweet – privilege to be part of what will probably be their Edinburgh swansong alongside the 3 other winners.

I’m very proud of this show, so it’s a massive validation to have IdeasTap and Underbelly add their remarkable voices to the chorus demanding/begging/politely asking people to watch it, and a great opportunity to have almost a whole month in which those people can do the watching. ‘One-man show’ is a disingenuous term, and increasingly The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Family is feeling less and less like a madcap solo mission, and less and less lonely. I’m grateful to have such a fantastic team working on the show, and now to have the support of such fantastic organisations. We’re moo-ving on up. Literally, to Scotland. See you in Edinburgh!

Tickets go on sale on 11th May. Check back here for a link.

*it was an email

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Family

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Family


2 thoughts on “IdeasTap Underbelly Award 2015

  1. Hi BenCongratulations. I remember you mentioning this idea when we were in Ledbury at the poetry festival. Do you have any more performances in London? I’d like to experience a performance! Otherwise maybe you will be performing it at Ledbury…??!! All the best with it all….and what will the next project be…? Alison

    Date: Mon, 27 Apr 2015 12:06:06 +0000 To:

    • Hi Alison,

      Thank you! I’m performing the show twice in preview in London on Thurs 30th and Fri 31st July at Camden People’s Theatre (tickets are yet to go on sale), and then yes, as it happens, I am bringing the show to Ledbury Market Theatre as part of a small post-Edinburgh tour on Weds 9th September. Tickets are here:

      Really hope to see you there! (And please, bring your friends! Not sure what Ledbury’s appetite for one-man spoken-word-theatre is like outside of the context of the poetry festival!)

      Best wishes,


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