Stuck for which shows to check out this festival season? Well, you’re in luck! We’ve rounded up the very best of Brighton Fringe 2018 shows to keep your evenings full of entertainment over the next month!
ROUTE FRI 4 MAY PURPLE PLAYHOUSE THEATRE
Writer Marie Myrie presents Route, her new vibrant, uplifting and thought-provoking play that allows plenty of room for play and interpretation. It’s a story of self-acceptance, and follows the journey of a young British black girl who finds herself at university in a white middle-class, city. With a mix of Caribbean themes, poetry and spoken word – it brings the audience into the world that the protagonist must face up to.
Originally, Route began as an experiment with Actors Awareness in 2016 as a 10 minute piece. Then going into development with Lyric Hammersmith alongside Yolanda Mercy where it grew into a 15-minute piece with room for research and development.
Route ensured that all those that worked on the piece have a strong sense of play and discussion, making sure the exploration of each topic that appears in the piece is done with flexibility and enjoyed the journey of self-discovery as much as the audience will.
THE SPARK FACTORY
FRI 4 – THURS 10 MAY SWEET WERKS 1
*What do a farmer, a former Dorothy Stringer student and a drag clown all have in common?*
The Spark Factory – an eclectic collection of performers appearing at this year’s Brighton Fringe Festival as a theatre cooperative.
Formed by Jessica Cheetham’s Spun Glass Theatre, The Spark Factory came to life at last year’s Brighton Fringe Festival and was hugely successful as it gave seven performers an affordable opportunity to get in front of a Fringe audience. The seven performers each made a monetary contribution that secured a registration, venue slot and marketing/PR support.
The farmer is Rosa Farber who will be delivering her spoken-prose piece And It’s All Happening at the Same Time. Her works have been influenced by her part-time agricultural practices that have led to musings about life, death, defecating, getting it on with someone and everything inbetween. The former-Brightonian is Eleanor Dillon Reams who brings her debut play HoneyBee to the stage. The drag clown is award-winning physical performer and cabaret artist Alexander Luttley alongside Maxim Melton with their piece Queerstory. The idea for Queerstory came about after they met a group of students at a Pride Event. During that conversation and the rest of that day, it became apparent that a lot of the gay community had no idea that the rights-changing Stonewall riots ever happened and so Luttley and Melton created a show to inform people about Queer history.
BOMB SEX FRI 4, WEDS 9 & FRI 11 MAY THE WARREN
The brainchild of Irish born, Brighton based actor Fintan Shevlin, Bomb Sex is a one man show based on the Irish troubles of the eighties. Performing at the Broadway Lounge in the centre of Brighton, the project will highlight the explosive relationship between England and Northern Ireland at the time. The dark comedy performance sees a mixture of eight characters who are all played separately by Shevlin. These characters help describe the political conflict between Protestants and Catholics in a humorous yet emotional fashion, through both English and Irish eyes.
The show is an amusing journey through the lives of those caught in the middle of the troubles. It explores viewpoints that display differing aspects of identity and examines how both freedom and diversity were viewed by others at a time when it was dangerous to be yourself.
The characters within the production show their experiences with sexual repression due to war and political issues. Bomb Sex will examine how being homosexual at a hostile time came with trials and tribulations that can seem almost incomprehensible nowadays. The performance will see viewers laughing and learning about a time that some who are younger may not understand, all portrayed through one man and eight voices.
LOUISE REAY: ERASERHEAD SUN 6 MAY & SUN 20 MAY KOMEDIA
This provocative new show from award-winning comedian Louise Reay questions the way we construct reality, the stories we tell ourselves and the lies we are told. Eraserhead is the third instalment from her provocative trilogy on power and oppression. Even facing legal proceedings, Louise still explores issues of free expression.
IN THE HEART OF THE WASP’S NEST MON 7 MAY BRIGHTON SPIEGELTENT
Con O’Neill, formerly of TV’s Happy Valleyand Cucumberlends his talents to a new show at the Brighton Fringe this year.In the Heart of the Wasps Nestis a production from TilThisNight, based in Liverpool. The new show is made in response to the recent #MeToo movement, fighting sexual harassment and promoting feminism within the entertainment industry and beyond.
Directed by Karl Falconer, the performance is a theatrical imagining of a Liverpudlian Sixth Form, where two older technicians, named Frank and Norman, meet their first female colleague. The story is tragic, satirical, slapstick and deeply moving, the performance explores a wrongful sexual misconduct allegation and how the fallout of such a situation can transpire.
The performance is both funny and thoughtful, Falconer states: ‘It’s something that we think people should be talking about, I’ve seen first hand the insanity of public service life. We want to put class on the agenda and to do that with the distinct style of humour that Liverpool is known for.” The Fringe performance of In the Heart of the Wasps Nestis slated for May Day, Monday 7th, and will be held in the Brighton Spiegeltent. This show is not one to be missed.
SUBIRA MON 7 & THURS 10 MAY MARLBOROUGH THEATRE
In Swahili, ‘subira’ means ‘patience,’ and Subira’s own patience is being tested. Tested by the marginalisation she faces as a queer Black person today. This first show at the Marlborough Theatre from the University of Sussex graduate addresses the issues of racism, sexism, sexual violence and identity, with a deft touch that invokes passion, anger, and humour.
Audience members should keep an eye out for the poem, ‘Coffee and Cream,’ and the accompanying video that runs in the background of the performance. Together, they explore the effect upon a person of being labelled as consumable produce and products.
The subject matter is undoubtedly challenging, but – with accompaniment from a B.S.L. interpreter, funded by her bursary – Subira is up to the task. In this visual performance of poetry and spoken word, she interweaves the personal and the political to meet bigotry and oppression head on, and give eloquent voice to the frustrations and aggressions that marginalised persons of all walks face.
LAST NIGHT AT THE CIRCUS MON 7 & SAT 19 – SUN 20 MAY THE WARREN
After the riotous success of her previous shows Made in Cumbria (2016) and The House (2017), Jane Postlethwaite returns with her new multimedia show. With its world preview coming here at Brighton Fringe, this much-anticipated new show sees 2015 Funny Women finalist Postlewaithe address the issues of metal health, self help, and dealing with your own success, all in her own sharp, innovative style.
Previous shows have seen Postlethwaite create and portray a whole cast of dark, disturbed characters as they embark on a coach trip across a warped alternative Cumbria, and a day out to Derwent Island House. This year’s show takes on more serious subject matter: Last Night at the Circus – which may be a nod to the similarly titled Angela Carter novel – and uses Postlethwaite’s own experiences to explore the subject of mental health in her distinctive and proven style, in an attempt to “spark conversations about mental health long after people have seen the show.” This third full show in three years is not to be missed.
For more details on Brighton Fringe shows, visit here.
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