Don't miss these new shows coming to Pleasance, Underbelly, Gilded Balloon and Assembly at this year's Edinburgh Festival Fringe
With the official Fringe catalogue offering over 400 pages of listings, it can become a bit of a mission to discover which shows to see. To help you out on this hallowed task, we've rounded up the top five new shows from Pleasance, Underbelly, Gilded Balloon and Assembly that we think you should see. From character comedy to break dancing and beyond, this list includes a bit of everything, with brand new artists and some Festival regulars. There's no better feeling than being able to say 'I saw it first!'.
Bobby & Amy Previous Fringe First winner Emily Jenkins presents her dark new comedy about the impact of foot-and-mouth disease on a boy and girl's life and friendship. As well as highlighting its catastrophic impact, it also celebrates the importance of British agriculture. Pleasance Courtyard, Wed 31 Jul–Mon 26 Aug (not 12), 12.45pm.
Bible John The unsolved late-1960s Barrowland Ballroom murders by the mysterious Bible John are examined in a new piece from Poor Michelle theatre company. It follows four women in 2019 who try to solve the mystery fuelled by an obsession with true crime. Pleasance Courtyard, Wed 31 Jul–Mon 26 Aug (not 13), 3.50pm.
Elements of Freestyle ISH Dance Collective brings an adrenaline-fuelled cavalcade of extreme urban sports with dance, music and theatre all thrown in for good measure. Breakdance, inline skating, skateboarding and freestyle basketball are put under the microscope to reveal the artistry in these fast feats of pure skill. Pleasance at EICC, Sat 3–Sun 25 Aug (not 12, 21), 4pm.
Ciarán Dowd: Padre Rodolfo Character comedian and member of sketch group BEASTS brings back the 'lothario and butthead' from last year's Don Rodolfo, winner of Best Newcomer at the Edinburgh Comedy Award. This time round Rodolfo has joined the priesthood and rejected his previous life of debauchery. Pleasance Courtyard, Wed 31 Jul–Sun 25 Aug (not 14), 9.45pm.
Camille O'Sullivan Sings Cave With her stunning voice and passionate performance, the 'Queen of the Edinburgh Festival' returns with a show dedicated to Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds. Her theatrical performance has her perform Cave's well-known brooding back catalogue. Pleasance Courtyard, Wed 31 Jul–Sun 25 Aug (not 7, 12, 19), 9.15pm.
Ronni Ancona & Lewis MacLeod / credit: Steve Ullathorne
Craig Ferguson: Hobo Fabulous The Grammy-nominated star of The Late Show comes back to his home country for one night only. He'll be bringing his Hobo Fabulous show, which marks the first time he's done stand-up in the UK for 25 years. Gilded Balloon at the Edinburgh Playhouse, Sun 11 Aug, 8pm.
Harriet Dyer: The Dinosaur Show The comedian brings her love of dinosaurs to the stage in her newest Fringe show. She also invites audiences to dip into her 'very large catacomb of chaos'. Expect a steady dose of daftness and even some 'diddies'. Gilded Balloon Patter Hoose, Wed 31 Jul–Mon 26 Aug, 8.15pm.
Ronni Ancona & Lewis MacLeod: Just Checking In When Donald Trump tries to buy a 'once-glamourous' Scottish hotel, a mystery must first be solved to thwart his plans. Lewis MacLeod and Ronni Ancona bring their voice skills to create this surreal story where the myriad of characters just might take over their creators. Gilded Balloon at the Museum, Wed 31 Jul–Wed 17 Aug, 9pm.
Hughie Mike McShane and Phil Nichol revive Eugene O'Neill's work, which found acclaim on Broadway in 1996 starring Al Pacino. It consists of two characters in a New York hotel lobby and was once part of a series of shorts until O'Neill destroyed the others. Gilded Balloon Teviot, Wed 31 Jul–Fri 26 July (not 12 Aug), 1.45pm.
Madame George by Keir McAllister Award-winning playwright Keir McAllister's new play centres around Madame George, a psychic who hasn't been able to access her powers since her mother's death. When a message finally comes through, however, will she want to hear it? Gilded Balloon Patter Hoose, Wed 31 Jul–Fri 26 Aug (not 19 Aug), 1pm.
Rose McGowan: Planet 9 The Fringe debut from the actress, author and activist aims to take the audience on a healing journey to a new planet of possibilities through memoir, music, storytelling, projections and performance. Assembly Hall, Wed 15–Sun 18 Aug, 1pm.
The Black Blues Brothers Rhythm and blues are added to the drama of circus in this show from the internationally touring group. Five acrobats perform around a stage set like an American bar to amaze with a range of circus skills. Think human pyramids, fire and somersault routines galore. Assembly Rooms, Thu 1–Sun 25 Aug, 4.30pm.
Frisky & Mannish's PopLab The flamboyant cabaret sensations have been a mainstay at the Fringe for the past decade and this means they officially consider themselves as 'Pop PhDs'. They are back with new show PopLab where they examine the 'molecular intersections between every pop song ever'. Assembly George Square Gardens, Thu 1–Sun 25 Aug (not 12, 19), 7pm.
Friendsical: A Parody Musical About Friends If you know the difference between The One with the Blackout or The One With Ross's Tan, then you'll love this new musical parody based around the iconic TV show. Expect 10 years wrapped up into one show with original songs like '(He's her) Lobster!' and 'Richard's Moustache'. Assembly Rooms, Thu 1–Sun 25 Aug (not 7, 12, 19), 1pm.
Noise Boys From the minds behind Choir of Man, Gobsmacked and The Magnets comes a brand new show that blends together music, tap dancing and beat boxing to create a musical spectacular. A high-energy show for all ages that features top street musicians from across the UK. Assembly George Square, Wed 31 Jul–Sun 25 Aug (not 13), 6pm.
Erth's Dinosaur Show
Cicada 3301 A new play that centres around the mysterious internet puzzle that first appeared in January 2012 on Reddit. It explores the craze that led to people around the world scavenging for answers and the lengths we all go for a sense of purpose. Underbelly Bristo Square, Wed Jul 31–Mon 26 Aug (not 12), 12.40pm.
Stevie Martin: Hot Content Member of sketch group Massive Dad and host of the Nobody Panic podcast presents her relatable new show Hot Content, which includes sketches, chat and 'absolute bangers', apparently. Underbelly Bristo Square, Wed Jul 31–Sun 25 Aug, 6.35pm.
Erth's Dinosaur Zoo The amazement and wonder of dinosaurs is shown in all its glory in this critically acclaimed show's Fringe debut. It involves massive puppets of dinos made to scale, in a show that becomes a real life dinosaur petting zoo. Underbelly Bristo Square, Wed Jul 31–Sun 25 Aug (not 12), 11am.
Unexpected Item in the Bagging Area Cambridge University Musical Theatre Society (of SIX and Hot Gay Time Machine fame) launch their new work in collaboration with Cambridge Footlights Amaya Holman and Jamie Bisping. A new musical comedy set in the aisles of a supermarket. Underbelly Cowgate, Thu 1–Sun 25 Aug (not 13), 3.45pm.
Danny MacAskill's Drop and Roll The first Fringe appearance from the YouTube star and trails rider. He'll perform alongside Duncan Shaw in a gravity-defying, breath-holding display of amazement. More special athlete appearances are to be announced. Underbelly's Circus Hub, Fri 3–Sat 24 Aug, times vary.
Circo e Dintorni The circus show that everyone is talking about! Joining the energy of Africa with a rhythm and blues sound, five unleashed acrobats perform their comedy tribute to cult movie, The Blues Brothers. In an elegant American bar, the chairs, tables and surroundings become props for new feats of acrobatic…
Gilded Balloon, Comedians Theatre Company and Marshall Cordell present… Comedians Theatre Company presents this rare one-act play which illustrates how our lives are shaped by the people we meet. Originally produced on Broadway, revived to sellout houses in 1996 starring Al Pacino, Hughie was one of Eugene O'Neill's last…
Gilded Balloon and Watch This Space Productions present… Madame George is a psychic in a slump. It's been 2 years, 7 months and 11 days since her mum died and she's still not bothered to get in touch. Then there's the neighbour, the annoyingly persistent and intrusive Mr Doyle, who also happens to be her last remaining…
Nic Doodson Productions, Andrew Kay and Associates, Great Leap Forward Welcome to Noise Boys – the brand-new tap dancing and beatboxing spectacular show that is set to take the world by storm. Featuring multi award-winning champion beatboxers, world-class tap dancers and some of the finest street musicians in the country…
Emma Blackman Productions and Emily Jenkins A new dark comedy about foot-and-mouth disease by Fringe First award winner Emily Jenkins. It's the late 90s: Take That, Tamagotchis and Pog swaps. When Bobby and Amy meet, hundreds of cows dot across the fields and the sun always shines. But when the cows begin to burn, Bobby…
Katie Storey Productions World-famous lothario, swordsman and butthead Rodolfo is back! Following an unspeakable tragedy he turns his back on his lifestyle – rejects the sword, takes a vow of chastity and joins the priesthood. But as dark forces rise he must face personal demons and battle actual demons. A supernatural…
Bound & Gagged The queen of the Fringe premieres a new show exploring the dark and light of Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds' music in her dangerous yet fragile theatrical style. Camille embarks on a personal discovery of a man of many guises; violent, beautiful, crazy, devout and religious. Chameleon-like and celebrated…
Gilded Balloon presents… A once-glamorous Scottish hotel is being sold to Donald Trump. Eccentric staff and celebrity guests conspire to prevent the sale. But first, if they are to succeed, a menacing mystery must be investigated. Lewis MacLeod (Dead Ringers, The Crown) and Ronni Ancona (The Big Impression, Last Tango in…
ISH Dance Collective In this adrenaline-fuelled explosion of extreme urban sports, breakdance, music and theatre, ISH Dance Collective create breathtaking poetry in every single moment. Elements of Freestyle is about those redeeming seconds that make a complicated trick ultimately succeed; about the freestylers' total…
Cloud9 Management Best-selling author, actress and activist Rose McGowan makes her debut at the Fringe. Through memoir, music, storytelling, projections and performance Rose creates a new world of possibilities: Planet 9. She invites the audience on a healing journey of discovery to this new planet. The antidote to all…