Wednesday 19 June 2024

Hold the Front Page 1 - Intimate Theatre at Buxton Fringe

John Arthur Sweet of Hard Times

Every day we are learning more about our exciting Fringe performers. Below follow extracts from their press releases giving a flavour of what’s in store from Spoken Word actor John Arthur Sweet of Hard Times plus Theatre entrants Michael Sabbaton and Chicago-based On the Spot Theatre Company.  For full details of their shows' times, venues etc see our listings on our website.
If you are a Fringe performer who would like to be featured in our blog, please send your press release to Thanks to all those who have already done so - watch this space!

Hard Times - Outside, in the Laneway, Under the Stars 

John Arthur Sweet, from Montreal, Canada, invites Buxton audiences to an intimate show about a personal queer journey, the role that art might play in the life of a bullied person, and the limitations of escapism—the need to get outside, in the laneway (Canadian for passage), amongst loving human beings.

outside, in the laneway, under the stars is an autobiographical monologue in two parts that will be presented at the Buxton Fringe for four performances (two performances of each part) during the first four days of the Fringe, at the Green Man Gallery. It uses a mélange of traditional storytelling, spoken word poetry, and theatrical monologue to tell Sweet’s story of growing up as a queer kid in a small Ontario town in the 1970s. In the face of relentless bullying, and in the absence of any knowledge of what ‘those people’ (ie queer folk) were all about, he took refuge in theatre as ‘the alternative to real life’, and an escape from the horrors of the unfolding AIDS crisis.

The show is presented in two ‘parts’, but they are independent of one another and can be enjoyed separately. Part 1 deals more with Sweet’s 1970s childhood and will be presented on 3, 4 July; while Part 2 (focusing on his early adulthood in the 1980s) is on 5, 6 July .

"It is not often we are offered such an intimate glimpse into an artist’s personal journey. Sweet is truly a mosaic of all that he has encountered and he has framed this mosaic for the world to see, offering the opportunity to gain just a little bit more valuable understanding." Sarah Kher-Bek, Binge Fringe at the 2023 Prague Fringe

Michael Sabbaton: The Temple

After previous successful tours of Polaris, The Statement of Randolph Carter and, The Call of Cthulhu, Michael Sabbaton opens up his box of horror once more bringing a new, anniversary production of, The Temple to Buxton Festival Fringe. Another of HP Lovecraft’s classic chillers, The Temple will open for two nights only at The Drama Studio, Buxton Community School on 9, 10 July.

Adapted, devised and performed by Sabbaton himself, The Temple, which last set sail in 2014, is an epic of the horror/sci-fi genre. Originally written by Lovecraft in 1920, it predates contemporary stories such as Alien and Event Horizon but establishes familiar thematic lines. Featuring new material for this anniversary showing, this immersive production captivates with chilling performance and mesmerising soundscape.

It is 1917. When a strange ivory, carved head comes into the possession of the commander of the U-29, the boat becomes cursed as it is drawn into a spiralling descent of dissension and madness. Nightmares, weird feelings and visions of dead sailors begin to haunt the crew. An explosion permanently disables the U-boat’s ability to surface and as it is pulled to the depths by an uncharted, underwater current, a demonic, siren song begins to drive the crew towards insanity and death...

In Sabbaton’s atmospheric and intimate theatre, this character driven world carries the cerebral, terror of the self and the decisions that make us who we are. 

The Temple - Link to Video Trailer on Youtube:

“Sabbaton conveys the staggering ambition of the original text with an added degree of psychological depth”  What’s on Stage

On the Spot Theatre Company - A Mid-Course Correction 

On the Spot Theatre Company of Chicago is pleased to bring to the Peak District the UK premiere of a new play, A Mid-Course Correction, written and directed by Mike Brayndick.  No stranger to the British theatre scene, Mike’s adaptation of Sons and Lovers has played at the Bloomsbury Theatre after touring England and Wales.  Mike’s play, How to Make a Rainbow, about the art and life of Joseph Cornell was also previously featured at the St. Ives Festival.  Now, On The Spot Theatre is thrilled to present four performances of A Mid-Course Correction as part of the Buxton Fringe festival with the preview performance in New Mills at the Spring Bank Arts Center followed by three performances in Buxton itself at the United Reform Church.

Come enjoy this intriguing play about a young mother on a day out from her family responsibilities, a two-hander that is thought provoking, down-to-earth, and fun!  Emma Friend and Casey Brayndick, after a five-week run in Chicago, are excited to be presenting this show in the Peak District as part of the Festival Fringe.

In the new drama by Mike Brayndick, A Mid-Course Correction, a young mother goes astray.  Or does she?  Let AI decide?  Decide yourself.  Time-travel into a Kate Chopin story.  Enjoy the UK Premiere of an intriguing literary adventure inspired by the short story, A Pair of Silk Stockings, by Kate Chopin.  A Mid-Course Correction explores the importance of both critical thinking and imagination in determining our place in the world and forging possibilities for a better future.

Following the company’s Buxton appearance, it will be performing at the Gatehouse Theatre in London.

Further information:

Buxton Fringe

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