Our Guide To Navigating Adelaide Fringe Festival
Forget flicking through Fringe guides and getting overstimulated. Start with these fabulously colourful shows.
While Adelaide’s has ditched its ‘March Madness’ tag, spreading the festive love into a year-round calendar, there’s no denying that this Adelaide Fringe Festival season will be wanderlustfully weird.
From comedians like Australia’s Will Anderson, who grace the sweaty stages of the Garden of Unearthly Delights every year, to artists creating the city’s streets colourful, public murals and art installations – the Adelaide Fringe celebrates all forms of creative expression.
It’s one of those times that, if you take a breather, you’ll miss something incredible. So, dear Fringe-dweller, here’s a list of must-see shows and events to schedule into your ‘Fringe calendar.’
While slumping yourself down in bean bags and hanging out in ‘the Garden’ is so the Fringe, there’s one venue that’s equally quirky: The Royal Croquet Club. This year, it’s going to be holding court at Pinky Flat, on Adelaide’s riverfront.
The wonderfully peculiar, feminist circus and physical theatre show, Monsteria, promises to have punters scratching their assumptions. Described as both mischievous and delicate, ridiculous and insightful, Monsteria confronts miss-perceptions and fights expectations of the female body.
Revealing feminine bodies in pieces, turning them upside down, stretching them to breaking point, laughing at this ludicrous posturing, Monsteria gets in your face with an important question: What are you looking at?
Catch Monsteria at Empire Theatre in the Royal Croquet Club for $28.
Fleabag is an award-winning, one-woman show created by Phoebe Waller-Bridge and directed by Vicky Jones, which inspired the acclaimed BBC comedy drama series (Phoebe won a BAFTA for it).
It’s a frank, funny and filthy window into the mind of a dry-witted, sex-obsessed, twenty something woman who is struggling to cope with modern life in London after a recent tragedy.
Maddie Rice, the solo performer (aka Fleabag) says she’s “a little bit of you, a little bit of your best friend, and a little bit of your sister.”
When asked about her experience performing to Australian audiences, Maddie said it went well.
“We performed first in to a sold-out house at the Carriage Works, Sydney. They were on board from the start and it was a pleasure. The show translates well with its metropolitan feel and its dry humour. We are so excited to take it all around Australia.”
Fleabag explores relationships, dating, grief and general big city life, in a funny, honest way. Peta Spurling-Brown’s local independent production company, Hey Boss, is bringing Fleabag to Adelaide.
Tickets are priced between $25 – $35 and the show will be held in the Garden of Unearthly Delights.
Isaac Lomman Hypnosis (Live)
Over in the Garden’s little sidekick, Gluttony, is a Fringe favourite – Isaac Lomman Hypnosis (Live). For $35, watch as volunteers are hypnotised before your eyes and taken on an (unforgettably hilarious) journey into their imaginations. Don’t worry, if you do put your hand up, you won’t wake up sitting on the grass outside. It’s all clean fun and Isaac, a Comedy Stage Hypnotist, focusses on the power of the subjects’ minds. He has a special way of showing people just how powerful the human mind can be… while making you laugh in the process, of course.
Also from our British neighbours comes Katie Reddin-Clancy, bringing GRACE to the Fringe. The show will follow Alfie, on a comedian’s journey to her first time on stage, identifying as a non-binary performer. Alfie has had a successful career as part of a comedy double act with ex-partner Grace, but now it’s time for Alfie to play the role she feels comfortable in, and for Zora to take centre stage.
“Grace’s discussion of gender was inspired by one of my dear friends who came out as transgender. I was touched by the issues that she faced and the ferocity with which she faced them,” Kate explains.
This captivating solo theatre show is stand-up comedy with a difference. It’ll use creative costumes and innovative design to explore gender, mental health in the arts, spiritualism, and the importance of supporting the arts industry.
You can catch GRACE at the Tuxedo Cat March 4 – 18. Tickets are between $15 – $20.
The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Family
Anyone who’s been on a family holiday will connect with The Hitchhikers Guide to the Family. Go on a journey with acclaimed British writer-performer and newly crowned BBC Poetry Slam Champion, Ben Norris, as he battles the UK’s most notorious service stations and the perils of lower league football in search of the man behind his stoic father.
This poetic, sometimes poignant, representation of a road trip explores the tricky gap we feel from those we love, addressing themes of identity and contemporary masculinity. A ‘one-man show about love and motorways.’
Take a break from all the action in the city and see this show in the intimate, charming atmosphere of the Holden Street Theatres. Ticket prices range from $15 to $25.
A little city with a big personality
Comedy, theatre, dance, circus, magic (and everything else that’s just too weird to classify), there a reason why the Adelaide Fringe is the biggest arts festival in the southern hemisphere.
Champion independent artists, let your hair down, take your shoes off, and stretch your mind, this March.
Published 23 January, 2018