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- Bruce & Janet
Edinburgh Festival FringeHi!
Speaking of High Society, LOL, not, - someone just posted this song in our EAW Weekly Challenge - I'm just heading out the door into the sunshine to hit Edinburgh Fringe Festival... it started this weekend and goes on for three full weeks, shows all day long till midnight - some maybe longer. Most of the shows are at student rates, why? Well, here's some of the history:
"...1947 Eight theatre groups turn up uninvited to the first Edinburgh International Festival. The inn is full so they check in at venues away from the big public stages. The first Fringe has been born. There is no central box office, no Fringe Programme, no advance publicity – the interlopers just arrived. ..." source - read on here: Edfringe.com - official site of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe
That's how it started... but basically it has been a student thing and Amateur dramatics from all over the world come here and put on their shows. People like the Cambridge Footlights started their early careers up here:
"...In the field of comedy, the Fringe has provided a platform that has allowed the careers of many performers to bloom. In the 1960s, various members of the Monty Python team appeared in student productions, as subsequently did Rowan Atkinson, Stephen Fry, Hugh Laurie and Emma Thompson, the latter three with the 1981 Cambridge Footlights. Atkinson was at Oxford. Notable companies in the 1980s have included Complicite and the National Theatre of Brent. More recent comedy performers to have been 'discovered' include Rory Bremner, Fascinating Aida, Reduced Shakespeare Company, Steve Coogan, Jenny Eclair, The League of Gentlemen, Al Murray and Rich Hall. ..." - source wikipedia: Edinburgh Festival Fringe - Wikipedia
I've seen Rich, he was fantastic, stand up comedy is raw and spot on, he's on again this year, Rich Hall & Others... other comedians who have had shows over the years, Lucy Porter, Jerry Sadowitz, Mark Watson, Craig Hill, well, here's a quote from an article from 2008 that will tell you better:
"...some of the most famous comedians to have appeared at the Fringe over the past 20 years – including Stephen Fry and Hugh Laurie, Dawn French and Jennifer Saunders, Lily Savage, Lenny Henry, David Baddiel, Rob Newman, Jerry Sadowitz and Eddie Izzard..." Source - Plans for a big-money rival to Edinburgh's comedy Fringe bring few laughs
... So, it's not without it's rivals and problems. I really hope they manage to keep the student side alive as to be honest, that's where all the fun and creativity is, I have bought a ticket to see an Amateur Production by Northumbria University Musical Theatre Society - 'Company' later tonight. I've been wanting to see this for a little while now. No, it's not a glamorous, no expense spared polished and finished production, it will be a dedicated team of young actors/actresses giving us a delightful interpretation and they will be just as entertaining as the bigger folk. For £5 2-1, you simply can't find fault in this!
The shows are put on all over Edinburgh - in the most fascinating places, The Under Belly, Underbelly's Hullabaloo, Underbelly's Pasture... we get to go down into the cellars of these great old architecturally beautiful buildings, many old churches but huge, The Assembly Rooms etc...
The entertainment ranges from Children's Shows, Comedy, Dance & Physical Theatre, Exhibitions, Music, Musicals, and Theatre - the actual programme is 288 A4 pages, and each jam packed full details of at least 7 shows - they are not just one nighter's either, many of them last right throughout the festival Aug 7th - 30th...
Since I have lived in Scotland (1980) I've been privileged enough to get to see many fine acts, including Garrison Keillor - what a big man he is; beautiful physical dance, many street acts which are free to the passing onlooker, and always look forward to this very special event. I even earned a degree in Piracy here - er the Pirate type not being naughty, um, er, rephrase, Bottle of Rum and Wooden leg stuffage, oh and a hook. So, yeah, being naughty, gArrrrr!
It's a whole load of fun, and attended by people (celebs too) from all over the world... I'm off to get my little bit of it now...
If you want to dig a little deeper, here's a website with blogs and info on some of the shows taking place - video clips etc, and Ooo they can be harsh in their criticisms - heh.
What's on Stage - Edinburgh 2009 or Edinburgh's Festivals from STV for a television coverage... there's also the BBC and The Guardian... maybe next year some of you will want to come this way ;)