Aug. 26th, 2017

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There's no particular need in the world for another Fringe guide but I want to write this so what the heck.

1) What is the Fringe and why would I want to go?
Basically, over three weeks in August in Edinburgh there are a bunch of different festivals- film, books, international theatre and music, jazz- but the Fringe overshadows them all. It's the biggest arts festival in the world by quite some margin, featuring nearly 3,500 shows over three weeks (on any given day there are probably only 2,500 performances. People need a day off now and again.) There are a LOT of venues, mostly smallish rooms in cellars hastily transformed for the occasion. More than half of the shows are comedy, but that still leave a lot that aren't!
It's one of the main engines of the British performing arts scene, and shapes pretty much everything about how live comedy works here (performers work up an hour-long show for the Fringe and then tour it; winners of the Best Comedy and Best Newcomer awards get a lot of opportunities.) It's an immersion into a different world, with its own priorities, vocabulary and time zone. Also, Edinburgh is an amazing city.

2) OK, I'm sold, that sounds cool. Why are you doing a guide specifically for a middle-aged person?
Because teenagers may be able to see 8 shows a day, drink 20 pints a night, sleep on the floor for a week, and not break themselves, but I can't. I have handy hints and tips if you can't either.

3)Is there any need for the whole guide to be in Q and A format?

My main points, I suppose, are to cover some of the issues that you wouldn't necessarily realise when you first think about going, and to strongly suggest you keep in mind what you already know about what keeps you happy.
now read on... )


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