Sunday, 6 July 2014

Fringe Daily Bulletin - July 7th

OK the title isn't going to sell many copies necessarily - but it is honest. Every day for 21 days we'll try and give you a bit of a Fringe lowdown and rundown. If we can think of a truthful but more exciting title then we'll do that meanwhile....

This week sees the start of the biggest arts festival of its sort in England. The Buxton Festival Fringe began in 1980 and the 35th Fringe runs from this Wednesday, July 9th right through to Sunday, July 27th. Over the course of 19 days there will be nearly 600 separate events and performances from around 150 different Fringe entrants. It is hard to calculate but something like 1000 artists, singers, actors, comedians, storytellers, magicians, dancers and musicians will be taking part.
Performances will take place in churches, parks, pubs, cafes, private homes, galleries, shops, theatres, on the streets and in the chilly Poole’s Cavern.

Many Fringe events take place in the cellars of The Old Hall Hotel. The Pauper’s Pit – a 40-seat theatre – and The Barrel Room are managed and run during the Fringe by Underground Venues, a small company spearheaded by Yaz Al-Shaater and Tom Crawshaw who met in Buxton more than 20 years ago. Tom and Yaz – along with another Buxton Community School friend, Michael Grady – wrote and performed plays together as teenagers. They set up Three’s Company as a vehicle for producing their plays. This will be Underground Venue’s 9th Fringe – and, as ever, there is some uncertainty as to whether this may be their last year at The Old Hall. The planned re-development of The Crescent is likely to see the cellars closed for public use.

Apart from running Underground Venues in Buxton Tom and Yaz are also heavily involved in Oxfringe – which takes place in Oxford in May – and most years they take shows to Edinburgh in August. July is the time for their many Buxton friends to catch up with them again.

For Fringe 2014 Tom has written an adaptation of Jules Verne’s Around the World in Eighty Days for the local REC Youth Theatre group which will be performed at the Arts Centre Studio between 16-19 July. Later in the Fringe Three’s Company will be putting on two new family-friendly comedies. In The Adventure Machine the audience will help guide our hero through a spoof fantasy world. Shakespearience is a Bardic mash-up which will be an entertaining presentation of our greatest playwright.

For full details of what is happening in the Fringe either pick-up a free 52-page programme – at Buxton railway station, the Tourist Information Centre in the Pavilion Gardens, at the Fringe Desk next to the Opera House at the entrance to the Conservatory – or go to You can also follow the Fringe on Facebook and twitter.

Buxton Fringe

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Twitter: @buxtonfringe

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