Trump card ... or Un big mis­take? Eck hits stage

The Sunday Post (Inverness) - - FRINGE - By Alis­tair Grant agrant@sun­day­

ALEX Sal­mond has re­vealed his dream guests for his Ed­in­burgh Fes­ti­val chat show – Don­ald Trump and Kim Jong Un.

The former First Min­is­ter is em­bark­ing on a run of Fringe ap­pear­ances today, with his sell­out show billed as a mix­ture of chat, anec­dotes and celebrity guests.

Last night, he in­sisted the US pres­i­dent and North Korean despot would have made the “per­fect com­bi­na­tion” to join him on stage.

“I was tempted to ask Trump, and put a Tweet out,” he joked. “Can you imag­ine the en­tourage from each? It would be ab­so­lutely fab­u­lous.

“The fight over the cam­era an­gles for the hair­lines. It would have taken years to get the thing stage­m­an­aged. It would be bril­liant.”

Mr Sal­mond in­sisted it was “an ex­tra­or­di­nary con­se­quence of the ma­nip­u­la­tion of the demo­cratic process that some­body like Don­ald Trump could end up the most pow­er­ful man in the world”. He added: “The fur­ther he puts his big flat feet into things, the more dif­fi­cult it gets just to be funny about it. Be­cause the con­se­quences are clearly not.

“I was asked be­fore he be­came Pres­i­dent what I thought peo­ple should do, and I said Antarc­tica might be a great place to go.”

Ahead of his first fes­ti­val show, the former SNP leader – who lost his seat to Con­ser­va­tive Colin Clark at June’s elec­tion – said he wouldn’t dish the dirt on his time in of­fice.

But he ad­mit­ted: “There are things you can’t say in of­fice, that you can say out of of­fice.”

He was sad­dened that his fa­ther Robert, who died at the age of 95 ear­lier this sum­mer, wouldn’t be there to watch him on stage.

The former MP also re­fused to rule out a re­turn to politics – and in­sisted Scot­land could leave the UK within four years.

“I think Scot­land will be­come in­de­pen­dent,” he said. “I think that was ren­dered in­evitable when the Scot­tish Par­lia­ment was es­tab­lished. Sooner or later the par­lia­ment will be­come an in­de­pen­dent par­lia­ment.

“The timing has al­ways been the in­ter­est­ing thing. The out­come of the Brexit vote will dic­tate the timing of the ref­er­en­dum, and will dic­tate the timing of in­de­pen­dence.

“If Brexit’s a soar­away suc­cess, if it’s the most amaz­ing thing that’s hap­pened since sliced bread, then I think that will post­pone an in­de­pen­dence ref­er­en­dum.

“But I don’t know any­body who thinks that now.

“There­fore, I think the ref­er­en­dum will be at some point in the next three, four years de­pend­ing on the tran­si­tion pe­riod of Brexit – and I think the re­sult will be yes.”

Alex Sal­mond Un­leashed runs from today until Au­gust 27 at the Assem­bly Rooms.

While Mr Sal­mond re­mained tight- lipped over his sur­prise guests, he said the show could in­clude singing – but def­i­nitely no dancing.

He added: “Politi­cians who try to do stand up fall down. So it’s not stand up. It’s sto­ries, and hope­fully peo­ple will see the fun.”

Sal­mond fish­ing? The former First Min­is­ter’s fan­tasy Fringe line-up would in­clude the US Pres­i­dent and North Korean leader.

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