Saturday 31 December 2016
We know that 2016 was a difficult year for many people in so many ways and that the 'difficulties' experienced in Britain pale into insignificance compared with those endured by citizens of Aleppo, for example. However, we add our hopes and wishes to those for a happier 2017 wherever you live.
For Buxton Fringe 2017 holds out some exciting prospects and developments. New venues, new performers and some new shows are in the pipeline and news on all these will be published in the coming weeks.
Meanwhile we are delighted to share with you a taster of the artwork created for us for 2017 by Tom Mason - we love his playful image that draws on Buxton's past as well as capturing the joy and excitement of living in the moment.
The flyer for Fringe 2017 will be distributed in the coming months and Tom's work will be used on the cover of the programme published late in May.
For now, peace, health and happiness.
Monday 5 December 2016
This artfully composed photo is evidence that the Buxton Festival Fringe 2017 is well and truly launched. We gathered at the Green Man Gallery (represented here by Caroline Small, left) on Saturday December 3rd and skillfully and enthusiastically led by Carol Bowns (middle above) we sung lustily, and sometimes tenderly, half a dozen carols associated with Derbyshire and South Yorkshire. Thanks to everyone who made the event happen. We'll be doing it again next year (assuming the planet survives that long) - Saturday, December 2nd, 2017.
But what would a launch be if there was no Festival? Happily we have some definite entries already (with plenty being planned and almost ready to confirm). First out of the blocks this year was Keith Large of Carrot Napper Productions. Keith and his team have brought comedy, drama and film to the Fringe in the past and it will be great to welcome them all back. Keith describes his latest work: Oh the lure of the Love-shed as out-of-work nightclub bouncer Vinnie Hollis attempts to recover a 17 foot prize carrot. Recently published in print to raise funds for the Stroke Association, this allotment aphrodisiac brings guaranteed laughs and love among the onions.
You'll be able to see The Carrot Nappers at the Lee Wood Hotel on Sunday, 9th July.
A big success - with audiences and critics - at Fringe 2016 was The Conductor which is an adaptation of Sarah Quigley's marvellous novel about a performance of Shostakovitch's 7th Symphony in besieged Leningrad. Performances take place this week in Rotherhithe, south east London. Only £5; if you can get there please do so.
Free, and closer to hand if you live in the Peak District, this Friday, 9th December is Navidad Nuestra which is a folk-drama based on the Christian nativity story written by Argentinian composer Ariel Ramirez. Starts at 6pm and lasts an hour - in the cathedral of the Peak, St John the Baptist church.
Thursday 1 December 2016
Not quite Christmas! Underground Venues last July - photo by Sofia Huxford Rodriguez
We don't exactly sleep through the autumn here at Fringe mansions but there isn't much day-to-day stuff to report. But now it is winter and things start to happen quite quickly.
For new readers a brief recap: the Buxton Festival was launched in 1979, the Fringe followed in 1980 and has taken place every July since. So the 2017 Buxton Festival Fringe will be the 38th - making it one of the longest-running Fringes on Planet Earth (we don't discount other worlds - though the Trustees haven't voted on the subject yet).
Buxton Festival Fringe is probably the biggest open access summer arts festival in England. Every year, over a period of 19 days, there are more than 500 separate performances and events, presented by 150 different artists or groups. All this in a town with a population of around 23,000. We are very proud of our town and the part we play in making it such a good place to live.
Buxton Festival Fringe 2017 runs from Wednesday July 5th through to Sunday July 23rd and as of today we are open for entries for next year's Festival. The Fringe does not book acts or performers - if you want to be part of the fun you are invited to set up a show. Our website gives information on how to do that but if you have any questions do write to us and we'll do our very best to help: firstname.lastname@example.org
Meanwhile we begin the fun this coming Saturday, December 3rd. Buxton's Town Team has organised a procession with singing through the the town centre and finishing up in the Pavilion Gardens - but wrapped around that is our own Derbyshire Village Carols event at the Green Man Gallery. From 2-4pm - brilliantly led by Carol Bowns - we'll be learning half-a-dozen or so traditional Derbyshire (some might be from Yorkshire!) carols. Then from 6.30-9.30pm - after the procession - we'll be back for a party. There will be mulled wine - and something to drink, for those that don't fancy warm wine - food and the chance to sing and sing. If you'd rather listen - well we'd love to see you at the Green Man Gallery.
We have just about got the artwork for the 2017 programme cover sorted - and we're very excited about that. Look out for news about that (and other seasonal events - Tideswell, December 9th, St Mary's Church, Buxton - December 14th) here in the coming days.
See you on Saturday - everyone is welcome!