BBC NEWS
BBCi CATEGORIES   TV   RADIO   COMMUNICATE   WHERE I LIVE   INDEX    SEARCH 

BBC News UK Edition
 You are in: Special Report: 1999: 08/99: Edinburgh Festival 99  
News Front Page
World
UK
England
N Ireland
Scotland
Wales
UK Politics
Business
Entertainment
Science/Nature
Technology
Health
Education
-------------
Talking Point
-------------
Country Profiles
In Depth
-------------
Programmes
-------------
BBC Sport
BBC Weather
CBBC News
SERVICES
-------------
EDITIONS
Edinburgh Festival 99 Monday, 30 August, 1999, 04:08 GMT 05:08 UK
Pub landlord draws Perrier prize
Second award of the day for Fringe favourite Al Murray
Comedian Al Murray has won the coveted Perrier award for comedy at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, for his act The Pub Landlord.

It was the second prize of the day for Murray, who just hours earlier had won the Universal Comedy Award, voted for by 10,000 members of the Fringe audience.

Murray said the award - for which he has been nominated three times previously - was "fantastic, marvellous and astonishing".

"It's a seal of quality," he said, during a party to celebrate the ceremony. "It's very flattering."

Edinburgh Festival 1999
However, he admitted that his stage persona, the bigoted Pub Landlord, would be less amazed by the Perrier accolade: "He'd say it's fizzy water - and you can drink water from the tap if you want it," he said.

Murray beat four other nominees - all male - to the prize, including Terry Alderton, Ross Noble, Arctic Boosh (Julian Barratt and Noel Fielding) and the League Against Tedium (Simon Munnery).

Al Murray poses with the prestigious prize
Murray, one of the big hits of the festival, had been temporarily banned from the Perrier competition because he was considered to be too well-known. However, he was reinstated following a public outcry.

His current show, entitled 'And A Glass of White Wine For the Lady?', which is a stand-up routine based on a 'Little Englander' persona, has sold out for the duration of the festival, despite him putting on extra shows.

Award brings instant fame

The Perrier prize is awarded by a panel of judges to what they consider to be the most original and funny cabaret, revue or comedy act of the Fringe.

Arctic Boosh: Among the runners-up
Since its inauguration in 1981, it has usually brought its winner instant fame.

Previous winners have included Stephen Fry and Emma Thompson, Jenny Eclair, Steve Coogan, Sean Hughes, Frank Skinner, and The League of Gentlemen.

For winning the prize, Murray receives a cheque for 5,000 and a night at Her Majesty's Theatre in the Haymarket, London.

The losers also get a consolation prize of a night onstage at a West End theatre.

Other things on his mind

However, Murray promised he would not snub the Festival in future - despite the lucrative work offers the prize is bound to bring.

"I don't like it when people win and then never come back," he said. "It seems shoddy."

But for the time being, he has other concerns, in particular the arrival of his baby daughter earlier this week.

"This week's been full on. It's been everything having a baby's supposed to be - frightening and cataclysmic," he said.

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
Audio
Al Murray: "It's been a week you couldn't make up. It's been astonishing"
Video
The BBC's Nick Higham: "The Perrier Awards are more than just an excuse for a party"
See also:

23 Aug 99 | Edinburgh Festival 99
26 Aug 99 | Edinburgh Festival 99
26 Aug 99 | Edinburgh Festival 99
28 Aug 99 | Edinburgh Festival 99
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more Edinburgh Festival 99 stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Edinburgh Festival 99 stories

© BBC ^^ Back to top

News Front Page | World | UK | England | N Ireland | Scotland | Wales |
UK Politics | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature | Technology |
Health | Education | Talking Point | Country Profiles | In Depth |
Programmes