New mental health award announced for Edinburgh Fringe

New mental health award announced for Edinburgh Fringe

Felicity Ward's discussed anxiety in her five star 2016 show 50% More Likely to Die / Andy Hollingworth

Mental Health Fringe Award will recognise the show that most successfully explores the subject of mental health

The Mental Health Foundation are launching a new award for Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2017, with support from Glasgow's Tron Theatre and the Scotsman. The Mental Health Fringe Award will recognise the show that most successfully explores the subject of mental health.

Mental health has been a recurring theme at the Fringe in recent years, with comedians and theatre companies exploring the realities and complexities of our mental wellbeing. A number of these shows have been some of the festivals most successful performances, including Felicity Ward's five star 50% More Likely to Die and Richard Gadd's Edinburgh Comedy Award winning Monkey See Monkey Do, which returns this August for a ten-day run at Summerhall.

Andrew Eaton-Lewis, arts lead for the Mental Health Foundation (Scotland), says 'We hope this award will encourage artists of all kinds to continue to make this kind of work, which is really important in opening up conversations about what can be very difficult and personal subjects, and which can often have a transformative effect on public attitudes towards mental health.'

The judging panel includes: playwright, performer and author Alan Bissett; strategic programme manager for NHS Lothian, Linda Irvine; artistic director of the Tron Theatre, Andy Arnold; playwright Rebecca Monks; and theatre critic Mark Fisher.

The winner of the Mental Health Fringe Award will be announced at the Scotsman Fringe Awards on Fri 25 Aug and will be invited to perform as part of the Scottish Mental Health Arts Festival's first Spring programme in May 2018, in partnership with the Tron's annual Mayfesto programme.

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