Fitz at the Fringe

Wednesday, 26 July, 2017 - 10:15
Edinburgh Fringe 2017 - logo

Thirteen productions in this year's Edinburgh Fringe Festival have a Fitz connection. Find out what's on, when and where with our handy #fitzfringe guide.

A bit about the Festival:

The Fringe dates back to 1947, when eight theatre groups turned up uninvited to perform at the (then newly formed) Edinburgh International Festival, an initiative created to celebrate and enrich European cultural life in the wake of the Second World War. Not being part of the official programme of the International Festival did not stop these performers, they just went ahead and staged their shows on the fringe of the Festival anyway, coining the phrase and our name – the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

Since the dawn of this spontaneous artistic movement, millions have flocked to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe to produce, and to enjoy art of every genre. 

This year's Festival is taking place between 4 and 28 August. 

THE CAT MAN CURSE

Bedlam Theatre (Venue 49) ​| 20:00 | 2-8, 10-15, 17-22, 24-28 Aug | 1 hour | Suitability: 14+ (guideline)

The Cat Man Curse is a whirlwind comedy by ex-Footlights Jordan, Sam and Guy. Using sketch, clown and physical theatre, Pelican balance a cartoonish narrative with playfulness and improvisation to tell the story of a bizarre mystery.

Description: When TV actor Charles Heron (famous for playing hotshot lawyer Harvey Hardtruth) is struck by an old Hollywood curse, he needs legal advice from a real-life solicitor, Mark Swift. Thrown into a kaleidoscopic 1970s noir investigation, the unlikely pair must come together to solve a mystery that’s ‘wildly funny’ (⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ BroadwayBaby.com) and ‘thrives off ingenuity and playfulness’ (⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ EdFringeReview.com).

Fitz connection: The Cat Man Curse is written/performed by the Pelican comedy trio, which is composed of three Fitz alumni: Sam Grabiner (English 2013), Jordan Mitchell and Guy Emanuel (both HSPS 2013).

FOOTLIGHTS: DREAM SEQUENCE

Pleasance Dome (Venue 23) ​| 16:00 |  2-13, 15-28 Aug | 1 hour | Suitability: 14+ (guideline)

Description: Join the Cambridge Footlights, ‘the most renowned sketch troupe of them all’ (Independent), as they embark on another world tour, performing to over 20,000 people across two continents. This year's tour travels to London, Edinburgh, California, Las Vegas, Chicago, New York and many more. You can expect free-flowing hilarity, excellent original writing and side-splitting character comedy, so don’t miss your chance to see this inventive new offering from the group that launched many comedy greats, including Stephen Fry, Sue Perkins, David Mitchell, Richard Ayoade and Mel Giedroyc.

Fitz connection: The Footlilghts' Dream Sequence Tour is managed by second-year Music student Lewis Brierly.

IMPROV ACTUALLY

Gilded Balloon Teviot (Venue 14) ​| 13:15 | 2-28 Aug | 1 hour | Suitability: 12+ (restriction)

Description: Let the Cambridge Impronauts steal your heart with a brand-new romantic comedy created on the spot, just for you. Based on your suggestions, we'll follow our protagonist's story through the struggles of love, be it first dates, awkward break-ups or maybe, if they're lucky, a happily ever after. It's a love story to warm the cockles of your heart and make your belly ache from laughter, and it will only be performed once. Don't stand us up.

Fitz connection: Marie Moullet, a second-year NatSci at Fitz, is performing alongside Emil Evans (History 2016). 

BRITNEY IN: JOHN

Bedlam Theatre (Venue 49) | 18:30 | 2-12, 14-19, 21-28 Aug | 1 hour | Suitability: 16+ (guideline)

Description: Raucous, fraternal comedy from award-winning sketch trio. After their cult hit debut show Mothers stirred up a media breeze at Edinburgh last year, they’re back with their totally unique brew of tight writing, banging tunes and sixth-form soul-searching. Come for the beats, leave before bedtime. Guaranteed crowd-pleasers. 'Original and clever… the jokes come thick and fast' ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ (BroadwayBaby.com). Audience Choice (London Sketchfest 2016), Finalists (Musical Comedy Awards 2017).

Fitz connection: One of the writers/performers is Joshan Chana (English 2012).

SALT WATER: A COMEDY SHOW

Underbelly Med Quad (Venue 302) ​| 14:35 | 2-13, 15-28 Aug | 1 hour | Suitability: 12+ (guideline)

Description: Embarking on the adventure of a lifetime across a country full of gun-toting, god-fearing, headline-grabbing maniacs, two teenagers go in search of the typical American man: in search of John Hancock. From the team behind Britney, John is a funny, nostalgic and irreverent onstage road trip across the USA; an endeavour to expose some of the lazy stereotyping that happens when we Brits think of our neighbours across the pond. 'Reminded me of a modern-day French and Saunders' (AYoungerTheatre.com). ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ (TheatreWeekly.com, EdinBraw.com). ⭐⭐⭐⭐ (EdFringeReview.com, BroadwayBaby.com, FringeBiscuit.co.uk).

Fitz connection: Britney In: John is produced by Alex Cartlidge (English 2013).

GOOSE: AMPHETAWALTZ

Assembly George Square Gardens (Venue 3) ​| 16:30 | 3-27 Aug | 1 hour | Suitability: 16+ (guideline)

Description: One of the best-reviewed acts of 2015 and 2016. Award-winning one-man cartoon. Wracked with hype, Goose present their most ambitious show yet. As seen on BBC Three and Comedy Central. 'Brilliant stuff' ⭐⭐⭐⭐ (Guardian). 'Excellently crafted' ⭐⭐⭐⭐ (Sunday Times). 'Irrepressibly funny... it's phenomenal' ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ (Fest). 'A frenetic, ambitious spectacle... superb' ⭐⭐⭐⭐ (Skinny). 'Crams more gags into a show than any other' ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ (TheWeeReview.com). 'Bloody good... meticulously crafted' ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ (One4Review.co.uk). 'Precision-engineered chaos' ⭐⭐⭐⭐ (BroadwayBaby.com). 'Hilariously unique' ⭐⭐⭐⭐ (EdFestMag.com). 'Will split your sides and pull at your heart strings' ⭐⭐⭐⭐ (ThreeWeeks).

Fitz connection: The show's original score is composed by Fitzwilliam alumnus Gabriel Chernick (Music 2012).

WOW!

Underbelly, Cowgate (Venue 61) ​| 13:00 | 3-27 Aug | 1 hour | Suitability: 14+ (guideline)

Description: Wow! The universe is mind-boggling! Isa Bonachera presents her debut Edinburgh show. If you like to hear about people, places and things, this is the show for you. Failed scientist Isa Bonachera will take you in a journey through reality. You are guaranteed to learn nothing. Previous praise includes: 'the best stand-up I have ever seen live' (Will Maclean, Cambridge Student). 'A continuous mixture of laughter and abdominal pain ensued' (Eddie Spence, Tab). 'Had everyone beside themselves' (Perdi Higgs, Varsity.co.uk). 'Will surely go far' (Carl Wikeley, Cambridge Student). 'A particular brand of genius' (Isobel Cockerell, Tab).

Fitz connection: Isa Bonachera, originally from Spain, did an MPhil in Physics at Fitz in 2015. 

SEVEN CRAZY BITCHES

Assembly Hall (Venue 35) ​| 19:00 | 3-13, 15-23, 25-27 Aug | 1 hour | Suitability: 14+ (guideline)

Description: Join the Diva on a budget as she guides you through the Seven Ages of Woman. Pit stops include seduction via Kate Bush, an interview with the woman who lived in Prince's head, and finding out how many two pence pieces a man can insert up his foreskin. This is standing up cabaret on a budget as you've never seen it before. Because the Diva's pretty sure she just invented it... Highly commended at Vault Festival Awards. 'One of the highlights of the festival' (GayStarNews.com). 'Buckle in for raucous feminist comedy... highly talented work' (FringeGuru.com).

Fitz connection: Holly Morgan (aka 'Diva') studied English at Fitz between 2004 and 2007.

TWO PLUS ONES: HUGE NIGHT IN

Just the Tonic at The Caves (Venue 88) | 21:15 | 3-13, 15-26 Aug | 1 hour | Suitability: 16+ (guideline)

Description: Raucous, fraternal comedy from award-winning sketch trio. After their cult hit debut show Mothers stirred up a media breeze at Edinburgh last year, they’re back with their totally unique brew of tight writing, banging tunes and sixth-form soul-searching. Come for the beats, leave before bedtime. Guaranteed crowd-pleasers. 'Original and clever… the jokes come thick and fast' ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ (BroadwayBaby.com). Audience Choice (London Sketchfest 2016), Finalists (Musical Comedy Awards 2017).

Fitz connection: One of the writers/performers is Joshan Chana (English 2012).

ACADEMIC TWO: CAMBRIDGE A CAPPELLA RETURNS

SpaceTriplex (Venue 38) ​| 14:00 | 10-13  Aug  | 45 minutes | Suitability: U

Description: 'Filled almost to excess with cheesy-rom-com-buckets-of-feel-good, this act put a smile on every face' (TheTab.com). A fun and fabulous afternoon of jazz, soul and pop with the two oldest and best a cappella groups of the University of Cambridge. Based at Fitzwilliam College the Sirens and Barbershop have been performing for over 20 years and lead the way in varsity a cappella. They are once again teaming up after touring China, where they performed for an audience of 10,000, for another ‘fast paced hour of outstanding singing’ (EdinburghReporter.com). You’ll not want to miss!

Fitz connection: The Fitz Sirens are Cambridge's oldest all-female a cappella group and originated at Fitz over 20 years ago. Fitz Barbershop the all-male, close-harmony a capella group was founded in 1994 by then Fitzwilliam Organ Scholar, Alex Tester (Music 1993).

MAKLENA

theSpace @ Venue45 (Venue 45) ​| 15:05 |  14-19, 21-26 Aug | 50 minutes | Suitability: 14+ (guideline)

Description: For 13-year-old Maklena, the Soviet Union is the best fairy tale yet. She imagines life in the land of the Soviets and dreams of joining the revolution. Her landlord, Zbrozhek, has a different ambition: to buy the local factory and see his name in golden letters. When their dreams are put on the line, reality and fantasy become confused and communist and capitalist ideals are taken to the extreme. This will be the world premiere of the English translation of Kulish's masterpiece – written just before his execution by the Soviet authorities.

Fitz connection: Maklena is directed by Maria Montague, who has just finished an MPhil in Comparative European Literatures and Cultures, researching the Ukrainian theatre director Les Kurbas. Maklena is a Ukrainian play by Mykola Kulish, which Maria has translated for the first time into English. More information about the play and its translation can be found here.

EXILE

SpaceTriplex (Venue 38) ​| Times vary | 14-19, 21-26 Aug | 1hr and 15 minutes | Suitability: 12+ (guideline)

Description: Six women meet in exile. They are nowhen, nowhere. Stuck in this place of placelessness, enclosed and without borders, they search in the sand for memories of home as their identity slips through their fingers. It hasn’t rained in weeks. Medea feels entitled to the last drop. Antoinette is trapped in the attic. Agave is haunted by the image of her son’s severed head. Samasti just got her period. Abhita thinks this is a joke. And Elaheh wants to write down the desert. As tensions run high and the water runs out, the women must unearth their stories.

Fitz connection: Exile is co-directed by Faye Guy (English 2015) and Rute Costa (Girton College); Niamh Curran (HSPS 2015) performs.

KING LEAR

C too (venue number TBC) ​| 20:30 |  16-26 Aug | Duration TBC | Suitability: TBC

Description: "As flies to wanton boys are we to th' gods. They kill us for their sport." ~ Gloucester, Act IV Scene I. During the course of Shakespeare’s King Lear, its title character is forced to confront the betrayal of his youngest daughter Cordelia, who refuses to publicly display her love for him in order to gain a larger third of his kingdom than her two elder sisters, Goneril and Regan. Publically humiliated, Lear has exiled both his one loyal daughter Cordelia and his only faithful advisor Kent by Act I, Scene I of the play. King Lear is about madness. It is about old age, misogyny, self sacrifice, and the risks we take in our personal lives by speaking truth to power.

Fitz connection: King Lear is presented by the College's own theatrical and musical society, FitzTheatre and Christs' Amateur Dramatic Society.


Find out more about the Edinburgh Fringe Festival here >>