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Blog: Fringe 2011, Ready to GO!

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Greetings from Edinburgh, where the sun is shining and we are ready to get it ON!

We arrived on Thursday to find that our flat is lovely, the pub at the end of the road is ACE, and there are many many curry options. We've been to two brilliant shows - Storytellers on Thursday and Richard Herring yesterday - bumped into various pals, and are generally getting very much into the swing of things.

Yesterday was Rigging Day, which I wrote about in my Whats On Stage Blog, THUSLY:

Yesterday was Rigging Day on the PBH Free Fringe, the day when all the performers get together to set their venue up. I thought this was going to be a knackering day of lugging heavy equipment and faffing around, but it was a whole lot more besides.

The first slice of additional magic was our venue, The Buffs Club, which is a proper old fashioned Working Man's Club. The regulars were extremely friendly and chatty (getting more so as the afternoon progressed, breaking into song around 5pm) and the manager was a lovely bloke, clearly used to being calm whatever goes on.

All the acts turned up on time too and as we headed off to fetch our PA I caught a glimpse of the real genius of the Free Fringe - we were getting to know each other through working together, becoming friends rather than suspicious rivals for audiences. This carried on when we got to PBH HQ at Canons Gait and spent a merry couple of hours helping to assemble equipment - major corporations should investigate sending executives to the Fringe, this was the best Team Bonding Exercise I'd ever been part of!

It was back at our venue, however, when the full beauty of the arrangement became clear. Putting out chairs, blacking out windows and arranging the lighting we realised that this venue was ours, not just some room we'd hired or a slot in a management company's crammed bill. We'd made this ourselves, together, and could do what we liked with it - something to be proud of now and, hopefully, for the next three weeks.

All right, we may have sampled a bit of the very reasonably priced club beer, and perhaps the singing of the locals had got to us, but it all felt a bit wonderful. Let's hope it stays that way when we actually start doing our shows!

I missed out quite a lot of the hanging around (which consisted of a LOT of Watching The Van for the PA chap) but it really was all rather lovely, bringing home to me the FACT that the PBH Free Fringe really IS true to what the spirit of the festival should be. It almost feels like a shame to risk spoiling it by doing a show now, but I guess we ought to give it a go. We're on at 5pm - I shall report back and tell you how it goes!

posted 6/8/2011 by MJ Hibbett

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In what way is the sun shining?!
posted 6/8/2011 by Keith

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