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Edinburgh Festival 99 Thursday, 26 August, 1999, 12:32 GMT 13:32 UK
Barred comic makes Perrier fizz
The Perrier award brings sparkle to the Edinburgh Fringe
A comedian who was temporarily banned from the Perrier prize because he was deemed too famous has made it on to the shortlist for the prestigious award.

Edinburgh Festival 1999
Al Murray's comic character The Pub Landlord has been the runaway success of the 1999 Festival Fringe.

Getting tickets for his show, And a Glass of White Wine for the Lady, is now completely impossible, despite his having put on extra shows.

Al Murray: Big week for the Pub Landlord
He also had to cancel two performances on Monday night when his wife gave birth to their baby girl. The couple have named the child Scarlet.

The Perrier award itself has in the past given birth to a series of comic stars, including Sean Hughes, Steve Coogan and Lee Evans, who have used it as a springboard to television and film work.

It is open to any event any mid-range cabaret, stand-up or revue on during the Edinburgh Fringe.

Murray, who has been shortlisted for the award repeatedly in recent years but has never won, was disqualified recently because of the size of his following, but was then reinstated amid a public outcry.

The other shortlisted acts for this year's prize are:

  • The League Against Tedium
  • Arctic Boosh
  • Terry Alderton
  • Ross Noble

Artic Boosh: Barratt and Fielding try again
Julian Barratt and Noel Fielding who make up Arctic Boosh last year won the best newcomer award, which is announced at the same time as the main Perrier.

The competition began in 1981 when only 40 shows were eligible to be judged.

Now, hundreds of acts compete for the judges' attention.

The winner receives 5,000 and a season at the prestigious Her Majesty's Theatre in the Haymarket, London.

The result will be announced at midnight on Saturday.

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