Posted on 07/07/2014
The Edinburgh Fringe Festival is one of the most famous festivals in the world and it brings together the best of the arts, comedy and literary worlds to provide a whole month’s worth of entertainment. This year there are over 3,100 separate shows taking place, which is a huge leap up from 2013 and there are nearly 50,000 individual performances. 2014 is the biggest in the history of the Fringe and in the year of the Commonwealth Games in Scotland there are plenty of things to celebrate.
The Edinburgh Fringe 2014 seems to have some overrunning themes which have brought artists to the city as well as many standout solo act, here’s a closer look at some of the most exciting options.
One of the overriding themes of shows landing in Edinburgh this August is Scottish Independence. The vote itself is in September and this isn’t lost on the acts at the show. Many shows sound like they have a point to prove such as the McBraveheart: The Other Scottish Play brought to Edinburgh by the company Fair Pley and which features William Wallace, Robert the Bruce and Robert Burns as its leading characters. The Independence debate is bound to be prevalent throughout the festival.
As 2014 also marks 100 years since the beginning of World War One there are many acts and shows working with this theme. SmallWare by Valentjin Dhaenens is one such so on at Traverse whilst Forgotten Voices at the Pleasance Courtyard brings together a range of vivid voices giving their accounts of battle and life after the fact, collated by The Imperial War Museum.
The final overriding theme is social media and the internet, both ever present in society. There are plenty of Fringe acts looking at this huge sector of society from both a dark and light-hearted angle. Error 404 is worth catching from The Point Youth Theatre and David Leddy’s shows at Traverse definitely need to be checked out for the height of technology, with the internet used as a venue itself.
There are many exciting acts and shows at the Fringe and it would be impossible to round up even 50% but here are some we truly think are worth catching, if you get the chance.
The BBC are putting on a fantastic show as they always do with a range of fantastic offerings from spoken word to puppetry and cabaret. It is a free event but you have to apply for tickets and winners will be drawn at random.
This fantastic play stars Oscar nominated and Golden Globe award winning actress Anne Archer and is directed by seven time Emmy award winning Terry Jastrow. The hard hitting play is based on true events which saw Jane Fonda confronting a room of Vietnam veterans who boycotted the filming of one of her films. The play tell the story of what actually happened.
Josie Long is a comedian who has been popping up on TV for some time and this has boosted her popularity. Her show, Cara Josephine, is one in a long list she has performed at Edinburgh and as a Fringe veteran she always gathers a good crowd.
This is only the tip of the iceberg. The Fringe is so expansive there are many shows running every day and night providing endless entertainment which cannot be beaten.
Photo credit: Alastair Barnsley