A few weeks ago we packed our bags for Scotland to check out the largest Fringe Festival in the world. After a week of recovery we final have the energy to report back on our experience.
The Edinburgh Fringe Festival is 68 years old. It runs for 25 consecutive days, 50,459 performances of 3,314 shows in 313 venues across Edinburgh spanning every genre–comedy, theatre, circus, burlesques, performance art, music, dance, the list is endless! For the most part, acts do entire runs–meaning 25 straight days of performance. It costs a fortune (around 10,000 pounds) for the average artist/company to produce a show at the Fringe. Most artists lose money, a lot of money, but for the majority that participate the experience is well worth it. The Fringe is the place people come to cut their teeth, get discovered, connect to a network of like minded people and to show people what they've got (25 x over). It's chaotic, disorganized and exhausting, fun, charming and exciting.
So here are some tips on how to survive Ed Fringe is you should ever decided to make the trip:
1. BE ORGANIZED
We planned nothing, going into the experience like brand new babies being born into a bar fight. What saved our butts? Old friends and new friends that took us around, made recommendations and invited us to shows. To those people we thank them endlessly (you know who you are). Basically don't be dumb-dumbs like us and get the Edinburgh Fringe App, check the website, get the programme, do your research and make sure you book a room because Scotland is cold at night!
2. EMBRACE CHAOS
As organized as you might be you will not be able to avoid the chaos of this Festival. We experienced a series of ticketing hiccups and miscommunications from Festival employees. More than once the Festival was describe to us as "the wild west". Once you absorb the fact that you will never truly get the hang of things, until you're maybe a 10 year vet of the Festival, the haggis tastes better and the cider runs sweeter. So embrace the chaos. Much like you will have to embrace the chaos haggis will wreak on your tummy.
3. GO SEE A CASTLE
You're in Scotland for fudge sake! Plus it's a great way to take a break from the hustle and bustle of the Festival.
4. FESTIVAL FAVOURITES
We attended the Fringe with a narrow focus–too see as many comedy shows as possible. The truth is we barely scratched the surface but here are some clips from some of our fringe favs.
JOSH LADGROVE AKA NEAL PORTENZA