Fringe Diary Part 6: Look Forward

So the Festival Fringe is over, but perhaps its most important task is just beginning. It’s all very well staging thousands of challenging new productions for a month in one city, but what about the future life of those productions, and what about all the audiences that never made it to Edinburgh? Once the Festival itself ends, those plays that survived the pressure can go on to revitalise the theatre scene throughout the United Kingdom and the world. The powerful figures of the Fringe talk constantly about the Festival’s low public profile in comparison to its cultural significance; far fewer people attend than the event deserves. It’s time once again for the best and brightest of the Festival to venture out into the wider industry and act as its ambassadors.

First up to the podium is Itsoseng, Omphile Molusi’s one-man show about his South African hometown. Previously at the Pleasance Dome, the play opens at the Soho Theatre on 8 September for a three-week run. I never saw Itsoseng and to my knowledge I didn’t meet anyone else who had, but Molusi’s play picked up some excellent reviews and managed to win a Fringe First award despite not playing at the Traverse, so this could well be worth taking in.

Likewise, I never managed to see The Idiot Colony, winner of both a Fringe First and the Total Theatre Award for Best Visual Theatre; chalk it up to inexperience that I missed most of the year’s really significant shows. The play, which picked up four and five star reviews, is a condemnation of the treatment of women by the mental health system in the mid-20th century, when homosexuality and childbirth out of wedlock were considered mental defects grievous enough to warrant sectioning. The Idiot Colony is touring the country from late September to mid October. Detailed information is available on the company’s website.

Fringe FlyersThere are reasons to look forward to next August, of course; not least that Belt Up (Nothing to see/hear), over whom I went embarrassingly gooey in Part 5, have won the Edinburgh International Festival Award. This means they’ll be back next year with International Festival funding, performing as part of the EIF’s Behind the Scenes programme. But as much as the Fringe is a theatre lover’s fantasy, with potentially life-changing theatre hiding in every pub, bookshop and temporarily converted university space, there’s no point spending the year pining for Edinburgh’s stairs and cobbled streets. The best of the Fringe is coming to us, and there’s always been a wealth of exciting theatre to be found in London. It’s just that, with it being more spread out both geographically and chronologically, we might have to look a little harder to find it.

Top and bottom photos by Matt Boothman


One comment. Add your own »


Trackback Address »

  1. [...] London Theatre Blog is a group-authored resource which has plenty of good stuff. Check out these audio visual pages which are a pleasure on the eye. [...]

Leave a Reply

Subscribe to this posts comments via RSS »

Comment Guidelines: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Spam and defamatory remarks will be removed. Please be fair and respect other people's opinions.

Email addresses will never be published.

You must be logged in to post a comment.

← Previous post
Sueño Lorca – Lorca Dreams
Next post →
Sons of York

Info and Credits

Recent posts by Matt Boothman

Sort posts by


Theatre in Pictures »


Practical theatre links, scholarly resources, maps, podcasts, cheap tickets & more.
See resource page »

Recent Comments

  • I have had groups do some of my plays in Second Life and I helped but together a...

    Theatre In Second Life

  • Tinker Bell as a fire ball? that sounds awesome… there so many re-makes of Peter Pan (like the...

    Grace L
    Peter Pan

  • Wow I'm sure that see the performance of Kate Duchene this character is totally extraordinary! I am...

    Henry VIII

  • Thank you for an excellent weblog !! I discovered some useful information and will suggest...

    Henry IV, part 1

  • I used Facebook to advertise a fringe show I...

    Jamie Honeybourne
    A Practical Guide to Theatre and the Web: Facebook