[ Welcome to the Fringe Festival 2012 ]
[ Getting caught up in the Fringe atmosphere ]
Sometimes when you’re travelling things just work, perfectly. You don’t mean to have been there at that time for any good reason, but the timings are right. We first had this occur with London – we just accidently planned our stop there when the Olympics were on and it ended up being the best thing ever. Cue Edingburgh, where we have just had the same thing occur.
We arrived in to Edinburgh with the 2012 fringe festival in full swing and immediately tried to act like ‘fringe pro’s’ – “please, as IF we don’t know who we know we want to see & where to go” – when really we were just 2 un sure, wide eyed tourists accidentality there at the right time with no clue about ‘nothing’. What seemed overwhelming at first, fast became a cultural explosion of awesomness however and in fact ended up becoming the main focus of the trip.
Edinburgh is a beautiful enough city without the Fringe Festival, but with it, it just goes to a whole new level. Imagine a city, almost shut down (except for double decker buses and black cabs) that is heaving from every bar, corner street and venue with fantastic comedy acts, theatre, live shows and music acts. That is the Fringe Festival.
We got lost most days stopping every few metres to watch another actor, comedian or street artist sell to us why we should come and see their show while wowing the crowd with their skills – be it singing, street performance, dare devel acts, or acting … Our favourite was a group of fully made up cabaret girls lead by a pimp/ring master yelling at them when to stop and where to go with them flitting about the streets stopping to dance & coo for photos every now & again. The vibe was just magical & most of the time you didn’t know where to look.
When people say ‘don’t believe all the hype’ .. They weren’t talking about this festival that’s for sure. Believe the hype!! Our favourite part was the big ‘tent lands’ or venue areas that are set up with 3 or 4 tents / rooms with non stop comedy acts playing, which meant that you can be out in the sun drinking whatever it is you please on tables & chairs, then head in to each show as you prefer (some you need tickets for, some are free). Morgs & I did this in an area called “Pleasance Courtyard” & “George st square” and had some of the most fun over the whole 4 days just soaking up the festival atmosphere this way.
We ate in pubs and people watched whenever we got a spare second, and worked out in the end which shows we wanted to go and see – Jim Jeffries, Greg Proops & Tim Binns as “Ian Montfort” – a hilarious spirit connecting comedian. Jim Jeffries was one of the most offensively funny shows we’ve ever (& I mean ever) been to, and is certainly not for everyone but was definitely for us. Greg Proops however was equally as hilarious in his own right & had an amazing show but I loved his impromptu add ins from audeince responses that were just as entertaining. Morgan & I got ‘picked out of the crowd’ with “Ian D Montfort” (a character comedian Tom Binns plays) and I have never laughed so much in my life! Before the show started a lady had actually come up to us and gotten us to write on a piece of paper, how we met, a dead celebrity we would like to hear from, a siblings name, a pets name & a few other things. He somehow makes the whole thing hillarious (he has an uncanny way of mimicking real ‘pyshics’ that can sometimes be way off” BUT here is the thing. He got every single thing we wrote down?! He knew we’d met “drunk at a party 5 years ago” (something I wrote), that I had a cat called Tarzan, that Morgan had a brother called Laith & that I had put down Marilyn Munroe. So whether he is a spoof or not, the character he plays and the information you get is the most entertaining hour you will experience! Hopefully he makes it out to Australia & if he does, put it down in one of your ‘must see shows’ list.
So there you have it. Edinburgh fringe festival. Whether we were simply walking the streets, eating in pubs, drinking & watching a live singer, catching a comedy show, being wowed by impressive theatre, or soaking up festival atmosphere in one of the huge venue areas it was an experience we will remember long after this trips ends and something we might just put back on our ‘to do’ lists again.
If you’re ever thinking about getting to Edinburgh, I can’t recommend planning it around the Fringe Festival enough (& besides, its the warmer months anyway – win/win)
Anna & Morgs xx
[ Cabaret girls performing in the street with their ‘pimp’ close by barking orders at them ]
[ A thin pole, that gets covered by so many posters all day everyday it ends up being a thick, huge pole – all adverts for things you can see & do ]
[ Free show in the main strip of Edinburgh – there are these stage all up the street where you can stop to listen to bands & choirs. SO many talented people ]
[ Pleasance Courtyard – lots of tents with tables & chairs & bars to sit, relax & chat at in between shows – this is where Morgs & I caught most of our shows]