The Big Comedy Gala

Working with artists is what makes us tick.  Putting them in a room together to inspire collaboration and create new opportunities is one of the most exciting aspects of live arts, to us.

Between 2011 and 2016, Civil Disobedience worked with Macmillan Cancer Support to stage The Big Comedy Gala (or The Big C) – created by our Director Barry and Mhari Robinson – as part of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. By harnessing the immense talent in the city during the festival and putting some of the best acts the Fringe has to offer on stage together, we’ve helped Macmillan create unique events in The Big C, raising over £50,000 for the charity.

Big C
Barry, Mhari, Josef, and Mim with the Big C team of volunteers in 2013 (EICC)

The hosts and line up stars have included Jason Byrne, Ali McGregor, Mark Watson, EastEnd Cabaret, Marcel Lucont, Sven Ratzke, The Boy with Tape on His Face, Caroline Rhea, Die Roten Punkte, Sarah Millican, Ed Byrne, Frisky & Mannish, Roy Walker, Tom Allen, Hal Sparks, and Alan Cumming, to name but a few.

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Ed Byrne and Sarah Millican with Barry and Mhari in the Big C green room (EICC)

The Big C was Hit Listed by The List and notched up a string of accolades, including Pick of the Week (Scotland on Sunday), Pick of the Day (Scotsman), Pick of the Fringe (Edinburgh Evening News), Top Ten Shows (Daily Record), and Top Ten Event in Scotland this Week (Skinny Magazine).

We put The Big C on ice in 2017, but as creative producers, we’re always on the look-out for exciting projects at all times of the year.

We can offer a tailored service for charities across the UK, to help events managers make the most of their budgets and maximise their fundraising reach, while supporting them in the delivery of ‘money-can’t-buy experiences’.

Want to find out more or discuss an idea? Don’t hesitate to get in touch.


The Big C 2016 – with Ali McGregor and Alan Cumming

In 2016, we returned to the EICC with our annual destination event The Big C – a variety show with a difference, and a world-class line up.

We were delighted to finally be working with the incredible Ali McGregor as she took the helm, with a little bit of help from Hollywood and Broadway megastar Alan Cumming.

Ali is a singer based between Melbourne and London. She started her career as a principal soprano with Opera Australia then ran away with the circus in the form of hit show La Clique (La Soiree).

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Alan is beyond eclectic. He was an award-winning Hamlet, and he had his own talk show. He was a tour de force solo Macbeth and he voiced a Smurf, twice. He shot a video portrait with Robert Wilson, and recorded a duet with Liza Minnelli. He made back-to-back films with Stanley Kubrick and the Spice Girls. He appeared in a Jay Z video and he wrote a #1 New York Times best selling memoir.

He also made his career on the Edinburgh Festival Fringe and came along to open this fundraiser for Macmillan Cancer Support – before introducing Ali who in turn introduced a bevy of Fringe stars including Jason Byrne, Mark Watson and Axis of Awesome.

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