Did you know 11 July 2017 is the first ever World Fringe Day?
This celebration of the largest arts festival in the world marks a momentous milestone – it’s 70 years since the first ever Edinburgh Festival Fringe took place in Edinburgh in 1947.
The Fringe was born when eight groups arrived in Edinburgh hoping to perform at the newly formed Edinburgh International Festival but were refused entry to the programme. Rather than being discouraged from performing, they went ahead and performed on the fringe of the Festival anyway and so the Fringe was formed!
Since this initial act of defiance, the Edinburgh Festival Fringe has now grown to be the largest arts festival in the world with the fringe concept having circled the globe and inspired a movement of more than 200 different fringes.
Edinburgh During The Festival Fringe
Every year thousands of performers take to a multitude of stages all over Edinburgh to present shows for every taste. From big names in the world of entertainment to unknown artists looking to build their careers, the festival caters for everyone and includes theatre, comedy, dance, physical theatre, musicals, operas, music, exhibitions and events.
There are venues, literally around every corner – Edinburgh’s Royal Mile fills up with street performers, and shows are performed everywhere from large pop-up arenas to small cellars. The Fringe is an open access festival where anybody who wants to perform can, and this year, more than 3,000 artists are taking up that invitation! It can be difficult to know what to see, but checking out the Fringe programme is half the fun!
Who’ll Be There?
Look out for your favourite personalities and comedians from TV, radio and the news, as well as discovering some new talent. Over the years the festival has become a launch pad for many stars’ careers. Emma Thompson, Hugh Laurie, Mike Myers, Robin Williams and Hugh Grant all flocked to Edinburgh in their early days as performers and hone their craft. It’s as much about the performers having a great time as their audiences – here is what some of them have to say about being part of the Fringe.
Want To Experience It For Yourself?
The Edinburgh Festival Fringe takes place each August as part of the wider Edinburgh Festivals Programme – why not check out our Edinburgh Festivals Guide for all you’ll need to know. Tickets and accommodation are snapped up fast, so make sure to plan ahead.
If you’re in need of more advice, check out our community and ask fellow Fringe fans for their tips and ideas.