It’s that time of year again, when the streets become Edinburgh’s biggest stage (and the Royal Mile becomes a flyer-filled battlefield).
Despite what the locals may say, the Edinburgh Fringe is an amazing accumulation of the world’s best talent. From one man shows, to cutting edge comedy and full-blown circus performances, there’s something for everyone.
Here’s my pick for the Fringe 2016.
Disclaimer: These are the shows I have seen, I am going to see or I want to see. I’ll update the reviews once I’ve seen them and add any more beauties I come across too, so feel free to come back and have another read.
Gillian Cosgriff- This is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things
Gillian Cosgriff is one of Australia’s foremost musical comedians (quite a niche genre, I know, but she rocks it) and an absolutely delightful addition to the Edinburgh Fringe. If you’re a regular reader of my blog, then you should definitely go see this show- when it comes to the butthurt of being a twenty-something, Gillian #getsit. The pressures of finding a career, a lasting relationship, immense wealth and to be an all round good human by the time a gal turns 30 serves as excellent material for some seriously funny and clever songs. What’s more, Gillian has a gorgeous voice. With her smooth jazz tone, she could sing the phonebook and it would be glorious… and no doubt bloody funny too.
8pm Until 28th August at Gilded Balloon Teviot. Tickets £11
Chris Henry: Chris World
In my opinion, Glasgow humour is the best humour. The Glaswegians sure know how to find humour in the worst of situations, and none more so than Chris Henry. In his latest comedy show, Chris focuses on the topic of judgement (Chris World? Like Miss World? Oh, never mind…) because, in his words, it’s hard not to get judged as a man-child who thinks comedy is a career. From a Tinder mishap of an epic proportion, to attempting to rescue his married friends, Chris gives the audience a no-holds barred insight into his colourful and chaotic life (with some cringey first-date dancing thrown in for good measure). Growing up may be the safer option, but Chris World proves letting your inner child take the reins is much more fun.
8.45pm until 28 August (not 15 or 22), at Three Sisters. Tickets are Pay What You Like
Slam style poetry has picked up a lot of traction recently. For anyone who doesn’t know what this is, slam poetry is a style of passionate story-telling (the sort of thing Unworthy shares every day), often described as ‘poetry for the masses’. The Loud Poets bunch feature some of the best slam poets from both Scotland and further afield, so expect enthralling and empowering performances. The addition of a live band makes this a wonderful performance that should feature in every Fringe-goers itinerary.
9pm until 29 August, at Scottish Storytelling Centre. Tickets £10
Shakespeare, that’s the guy your English teacher forced you to read, right? Maybe you even featured in an especially horrendous amateur production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Whatever your relationship with Shakespeare, it will never be the same again after this hilarious production. How’s it different? Well, during an entirely serious take on one of Shakespeare’s classics, one cast member must perform whilst blindingly drunk. What could possibly go wrong..?
10.15pm until 29 August, at Underbelly George Square. Tickets £15
After two sell-out years, Gilbert and Sullivan-loving theatre company Cat-Like Tread return with The Mikado. Arguably the duo’s funniest opera (Gilbert and Sullivan knew what they were doing when they gave it the subtitle ‘The town of Titipu’), The Mikado is a tale of love in a town where flirting is punishable by death. But when the executioner himself is the next one in line to be beheaded, surely no executions can take place? The Mikado is an excellent stepping stone into the genre for anyone cautious of opera, and while they may technically be an amateur company, Cat-Like Tread features some really amazing voices.
8pm, 22-27 August, at SpaceTriplex. Tickets £12
Image: Heather Marshall
Up-and-coming Scottish Contemporary theatre group Creative Electric has been working hard to challenge both expectations and theatrical genres with their edgy take on modern life. The group’s latest offering, Fragility, is a highly visual, physical performance that explores what it means to be a young man in 2016, created by eight young men aged 17-22. The production, set over the course of a night out, explores expectations of masculinity in an outdoor, audience interactive setting. A real piece of thought provoking theatre for those who are after more than light entertainment.
7pm from 15-21 August, at Leith Walk Studios. Tickets are Pay What You Like
Get Your Own Back: Live
Every 90s kid wished they could have gone on Get Your Own Back. And while we may never know what exactly constitutes ‘gunge’, we can finally live our childhood dream. The show’s original presenter, Dave Benson Phillips, will bring out the child in even the soberest of grown-ups, with his silly games and galons of green gloop. Now, to track down that Primary 7 teacher you hated to give them a right good gunging…
5.15pm until 28 August (not 16), at Assembly George Square. Tickets £13.50