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Comedy stars commit to huge Fringe charity fundraiser

This news post is 11 months old

100% of box office income is going to The Brain Tumour Charity

Major comedy stars will turn out for a massive charity fundraiser during the Edinburgh Fringe.

Underbelly has announced the line-up for its fifth Big Brain Tumour Benefit in its biggest venue at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, McEwan Hall. 

100% of box office income from the 15 August event is going to The Brain Tumour Charity, the world's leading brain tumour charity and the largest dedicated funder of research into brain tumours globally.

Headlining this year’s show will be British comedy legend, stand-up, broadcaster, author and actor Frank Skinner. Joining Frank will be star of Channel 4’s Taskmaster and Edinburgh Comedy Awards Best Show nominee, Ivo Graham; former junior doctor, comedian and BAFTA-winning author of the hit BBC series This Is Going To HurtAdam Kay; 2022 Best Newcomer winner at the Edinburgh Comedy Awards, Lara Ricote; much loved stand-up comedian and Brain Tumour Charity ambassador Hal Cruttenden; 2022 Nominee for Best Newcomer at the Edinburgh Comedy Awards, Emmanuel Sonubi; and returning to the Fringe after a sold out season in 2022, Chloe Petts, and more names yet to be announced.

All box office income goes directly to The Brain Tumour Charity, a cause close to Underbelly’s heart. Co-founder Ed Bartlam’s son Alfie was just four years old when he was diagnosed with a form of aggressive brain cancer in 2016 and sadly died thre days after the end of the Fringe in 2019.

Research into brain tumours is severely underfunded in the UK and yet represents the biggest cancer killer for under 40s.  Around 12,000 people are diagnosed with a brain tumour every year in the UK, that’s 33 families facing the devastation of a brain tumour diagnosis every single day. The Brain Tumour Charity’s Better Safe Than Tumour campaign aims to raise awareness of the common signs and symptoms in both children and adults and to support the public to get any concerning or persistent symptoms checked out by their doctor.

Ed Bartlam said: “I am so delighted that we are able to present the fifth of our Brain Tumour Benefit shows at Underbelly this year. The support from comedians and audiences for these shows has been incredible and we’ve raised over £100,000 for The Brain Tumour Charity since our first show in 2017. 

“My wife and I have committed to raising £1.5 million by 2025 to fund a specific paediatric brain tumour research and new treatment project based in Cambridge. We’re doing this through a range of fundraising events and we’ve already raised £500,000. Just £1m more to go! This annual Fringe show is a crucial part of our fundraising drive, so do please buy a ticket to watch a truly amazing line up of comedians and raise money for this vital cause. It’s a win-win!”

Gina Almond, director of fundraising and marketing at The Brain Tumour Charity, said:“It is wonderful news that the Big Brain Tumour Benefit comedy gig is happening again this year and we cannot thank our brilliant partners, Underbelly, enough for their continued support in raising vital funds for research and awareness of the devastating impact of a brain tumour.

“Brain tumours are the biggest cancer killer of children and adults under 40 and they reduce life expectancy by 27 years, the highest of any cancer and this must change. The Brain Tumour Charity is committed to fighting brain tumours on all fronts. We can only strive towards our goal of people with a brain tumour living longer and better lives with the support from people like Ed, Charlie and the truly fantastic Underbelly team.

“I’m delighted that the Big Brain Tumour Benefit gig has become a regular feature during the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and, having seen the fantastic line up for this year, I know it will be an utterly hilarious evening. Thank you all for your exceptional support.”

To book tickets for Underbelly’s Big Brain Tumour Benefit visit here.