2018 Edinburgh Festival Fringe wants you to leap into the unknown
- Katharine Gemmell
- 6 June 2018
Tickets are now on sale for this year's Fringe programme which focuses on 100 years of WW1, #MeToo, disability and class issues
As the craziness of Edinburgh Festivals fast approaches, the people over at Fringe HQ have officially released their programme of events. After the 70th anniversary of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe last year, the 71st edition features a whopping 3,548 shows, 317 venues and 56,796 performances. There is set to be 51 international countries exhibiting and the genres of performance cover the whole spectrum of the arts, with both famous and up-and-coming talent. As an example of the organisers' commitment to inclusivity, there will be 697 free and 260 pay-as-you-want shows.
This year, organisers are encouraging festival-goers to 'leap into the unknown' and try something new. Shona McCarthy, Chief Executive of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society, said: 'Whether this is your first or your 50th time visiting the Fringe as a performer or audience member, this is a place where new discoveries wait around every corner. There is no other festival in the world that offers such a broad or diverse range of cultural experiences. The Fringe is a festival that empowers its audiences to create their own adventure.'
The festival is celebrating more milestones this year as 2018 marks the 20th anniversary of the Fringe Society managing the Virgin Money Street Event. To mark the occasion, the Society has revamped the Royal Mile street events arena, increased the size of the space and made it more accessible. Another reason to celebrate is the 10th birthday of the Made in Scotland programme, a dedicated showcase of Scottish talent with a programme of 23 shows that has enabled 74 productions to visit 35 countries across the world. Highlights of the anniversary programme include the world premiere of Heroine, a piece based on the true story of US Army officer Danna Davis, and What Girls Are Made Of, where Cora Bissett relives her experience as a teenage rock star.
Key themes highlighted by the 2018 Festival Fringe are; the First World War Centenary, with Fall of Eagles using songs and comedy to show the absurdity of war; class, with KillyMuck, The Political History of Smack and Crack, and Loki, the Scottish Rapper: Povery Safari Live touching on themes of class, poverty and social mobility. As a nod to the 70th anniversary of the NHS, healthcare is a popular theme with notable shows including Mark Thomas' Check Up: Our NHS at 70, A Fortunate Man and Where It Hurts; and also sex and consent, as the #MeToo movement inspires responses through shows like It's True, It's True, It's True and Ayesha Hazarika: Girl on Girl. Other themes at the forefront of the festival are family, our lives online, disability and faith from different perspectives.
Tickets are on sale now and available for purchase from the Fringe Box Office or the edfringe.com.
Edinburgh Festival Fringe runs Fri 3–Mon 27 Aug