40 Unmissable Shows at the Edinburgh Fringe 2015

40 Unmissable Shows at the Edinburgh Fringe 2015

Bring On The Edinburgh Fringe!

We’ll be jetting up to the Edinburgh Fringe for the first weekend of the festival, and we’ll be sharing with you the best quirky, offbeat, and downright amazing events at this years Fringe!

BUT FIRST! YES, IT’S OUR ONE-PAGE GUIDE TO SOME OF THE HOTTEST HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE FESTIVAL PROGRAMME!

We’ve picked out some of the more accessible yet offbeat, less mainstream offerings from this years jumbo Edinburgh Fringe line-up. Also, look out for our reviews article once the festival kicks off!

Go on, knock yourselves out with fab fringe festivity!

CABARET, CIRCUS & LIVE ART

BARBU Electro Trad Cabaret

BARBU Electro Trad Cabaret
Aug 7-11, 13-17, 19-25, 27-29 | 9:50pm | £7.50-£18.50 | Underbelly’s Circus Hub on the Meadows

CIRCUS – If you know To Do List, you know we love circus – especially circus with a twist. Here, Canada’s Cirque Alfonse fuse traditional and contemporary circus in a riot of circus cabaret mayhem.

Close Up

Close Up
Aug 5-11, 13-17, 19-24, 26-31 | 8:00pm | £11-18 | Underbelly, George Square

CIRCUS – More acrobatic mastery from Circa (Beyond, Wunderkammer), challenging conceptions of circus in this intimate, close-up show featuring interactive video and pounding music.

Dolls

Dolls
Aug 7-11, 13-17, 19-23, 25-29 | 3:25pm | £7.50-16.50 | Underbelly’s Circus Hub on the Meadows

CIRCUS – Cirk La Putyka explore our relationships to objects through a story of obsession, joy, insecurity and longing through trapeze, acrobatics, dance and original music.

Hula House

Hula House
Aug 11-16, 19-23 | Times Vary | £7-13.50 | ZOO Southside

PERFORMANCE ART – A chance to meet the women behind the stereotypes, PVP presents a site-specific project which promises an interactive, intimate insight into the lives of UK sex workers.

Fake It 'til You Make It

Fake It ’til You Make It
Aug 7-9, 12-15, 19-23, 25-30 | Times Vary | £18 | Traverse Theatre

PERFORMANCE ART – Bryony Kimmings returns to the fringe, this time with her partner Tim, to address the issue of men with clinical depression. Expect to be informed, entertained and moved deeply.

Lucille-McCormack

Lucille McCormack
Aug 27 & 28 | 9pm | FREE| Forest Fringe

CABARET – “Old time cabaret star, political activist and professional attention seeker”, Lucille McCormack returns after 50 years away from the limelight to perform an intimate set of “neo-classic-nu-femme-no-holds-barred chansons”.

Luther-&-Bockelson

Reformation 9
Aug 18 | 9:30pm | FREE| Forest Fringe

PERFORMANCE ART – Possibly the most unreviewable show at this years Edinburgh Fringe, “iconoclastic performance duo” Luther & Bockelson’s Reformation 9 is… well, we can’t tell you, because spoilers abound. Let’s just say: immersive, interactive theatre like you’ve never experienced before…

Penny Arcade - Longing Lasts Longer

Penny Arcade: Longing Lasts Longer
Aug 6-16, 18-23, 25-30 | 8:50pm | £6-12 | Underbelly, Cowgate

CABARET – Penny Arcade presents part-memoir, part-manifesto – a mix of cutting satire, euphoric soundscapes and musical grooves. Be prepared to multitask: think, laugh and dance at the same time!

Pollyanna
Aug 6-7, 9-14, 16-21, 23-28 | 10pm | FREE | Paradise Palms

CABARET – Hostess Pollyfilla introduces a veritable smörgåsbord of performance art, drag, live music, and more! Expect “unpolished creatures and beautiful disasters”, between trips to the bar and carefree dancing.

The Elephant in the Room

The Elephant in the Room
Aug 7-11, 13-16, 18-23, 25-29 | 8:35pm | £12-15.50 | Underbelly’s Circus Hub on the Meadows

CIRCUS – More circus, this time the UK premiere of this circus/film noir/physical theatre fusion from Cirque Le Roux, who promise to “transform the circus tent into a smoky world of intrigue, physical feats, slapstick and mystery”!

VELVET

VELVET
Aug 5-9, 11-14, 16, 18-23, 25-30 | Times Vary | £20-22 | The Famous Spiegeltent

CABARET – Cabaret meets disco inferno at VELVET – a celebration of glamour and abandon featuring a cast of vocal, dance and acrobatic stars. Prepare for your senses to be overloaded!

where.to

where.to
Aug 18-30 | 5:10pm | £8-10 | Summerhall

PERFORMANCE ART – Post-rock performance troupe Needless Alley present Where.To – somewhere between a theatrical performance and a live gig, combining spoken word, improvised sound design and dance.

COMEDY

Beard - The Grin of Love

Beard: The Grin of Love
Aug 8-17, 19-29 | 1:15pm | FREE | Sneaky Pete’s

COMEDY – Sketch duo Beard present The Grin of Love: “part romance, part nightmare, part darkly intimate experience”.

Beth Vyse - As Funny As Cancer

Beth Vyse: As Funny As Cancer
Aug 6-17, 19-30 | 4:20pm | £5 | Heroes @ The Hive

COMEDY –  A deeply personal yet uplifting, inspiring, and downright hilarious autobiographical look at Beth’s battle with breast cancer.

Follow the Faun

Follow the Faun
Aug 6-31 | 9:40pm | £8.50 | Spotlights

COMEDY – “Think the pied piper… on acid… in heels… Prepare to be taken on a “seething, soaring, flying, flipping, magic” journey in this mash-up ofimmersive theatre, dance and mythical storytelling.

Holly Burn - I am Kirsty K

Holly Burn: I am Kirsty K
Aug 6-17, 19-30 | 6:20pm | £5 | Just the Tonic at The Mash House

COMEDY – Character comedian Holly Burn brings Kirsty K to the Edinburgh Fringe: Kirsty has never been away from home before, and is looking for new experiences & new friends! Call/text her if you want to chat – she gets lonely apparently… 07948 403980.

Lily Bevan – Pheasant Plucker

Lily Bevan – Pheasant Plucker
Aug 5-16, 18-31 | 3pm | £6-11 | Underbelly Med Quad

COMEDY – They Say: Is laughter really the best medicine? Isn’t medicine the best medicine? Yoga? Scandinavian design? Buns? Sticking to your guns? Plucking pheasants till the pheasant plucking’s done?

Luisa Omielan- Am I Right Ladies?!

Luisa Omielan: Am I Right Ladies?!
Aug 13-15 | 8:45pm | £16.50 | Assembly George Square Theatre

COMEDY – Luisa Omielan hosts a party with jokes, addressing topics including sex, mental health and body image. #AmIRightLadies.

Nicholas Parsons' Happy Hour

Nicholas Parsons’ Happy Hour
Aug 7-9, 12-16 | 5:10pm | £6-13 | Pleasance Courtyard

COMEDY – Star of stage, screen and radio Nicholas Parsons hosts an improvised comedy and chat show with a host of special guests, celebrating 15 years on the Pleasance stage.

The Beau Zeaux - An Improvised Comedy

The Beau Zeaux: An Improvised Comedy
Aug 6-11, 13-18, 20-25, 27-30 | 5:45pm | £6-12 | Pleasance Courtyard

COMEDY – Marcus Brigstocke, Thom Tuck, Pippa Evans, Rachel Parris lead an ever-changing cast of comedians improvising like the lives depend on it!

Thrones! The Musical

Thrones! The Musical
Aug 5-31 | 5:00pm | £10-14 | Assembly George Square Studios

COMEDY MUSICAL – Thrones! is the inevitable musical parody of HBO’s hit tv fantasy, Game of Thrones. “Nudity? Maybe. Laughs? For sure. Brothers and sisters f*cking? No comment.”

THEATRE & MUSICALS

Am I Dead Yet

Am I Dead Yet?
Aug 19-23, 25-30 | Times Vary | £18 | Traverse Theatre

THEATRE – Jon Spooner and Chris Thorpe perform Am I Dead Yet?, a story with songs about death and dying and how we don’t talk about it enough.

Bloody East Europeans

Bloody East Europeans
Aug 25-29 | 6:30pm | £6 | Quaker Meeting House

MUSICAL THEATRE – London-based Ukrainian company Molodyi Teatr, present a tragi-comic melange of Red Army songs, Ukranian folk ballads and 70s disco in this provocative yet tongue-in-cheek look at  Eastern European immigrants.

Brute

Brute
Aug 6-18, 20-30 | 4:10pm | £6-11 | Underbelly, Cowgate

THEATRE – A piece of new writing which explores the horrors of being 14years old –  “there are rules with no logic, sadistic jokes that aren’t actually funny and the most sinister games played out of boredom. And, you better not be fat or clever or you’re f*cked”.

Butoh Beethoven

Butoh Beethoven
Aug 6-17 | 7pm | £7-12 | New Town Theatre

DANCE – The European premiere of a solo show which sees Vangeline conjure the ghosts of butoh founder Tatsumi Hijikata and composer Ludwig van Beethoven…

Chicken

Chicken
Aug 7-10, 12-17, 19-24, 26-30 | 5:05pm | £9-16 | Roundabout @ Summerhall

THEATRE – Eastern Angles and Unity Theatre, Liverpool bring Chicken to the Roundabout at Summerhall. Molly Davies’ new play is set in a dystopian future UK where north and south are alienated and London is a sovereign state.

FEAST

FEAST
Aug 7-20, 22-31 | 3:55pm | £8-10 | ZOO

PHYSICAL THEATRE – Clout Theatre explore “the evolution of mankind’s relationship with food through the triptych of the daily routine: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.”

Expect a “visual feast”,  showcasing vastly different performance styles, from primal movement to clowning and multimedia.

Light Boxes

Light Boxes
Aug 9, 12, 14-17, 19-24, 26-30 | 7:15pm | £17 | Summerhall

THEATRE – Adapted from the novel by Shane Jones, Light Boxes is a story set in in a world where flight has been banned and February has lasted for over a hundred days. Featuring live music, projection and visual-storytelling.

Miss Sarah

Miss Sarah
Aug 7-16, 18-23, 25-31 | 2:50pm | £6-9 | ZOO

THEATRE – A look at the debilitating nature of hope: a Lynchian nightmare focussing on those left behind in missing person cases. “How long ’til someone is gone, how long ’til missing, how long ’til dead?”

Molly

Molly
Aug 5-16, 18-23, 25-30 | 4:40pm | £6-10 | Pleasance Courtyard

THEATRE – ‘My teachers called me extraordinary. Mum called me strong-willed. My boss said I was a great asset. Now everyone calls me evil.’ Squint return to the Edinburgh Fringe with Molly, a journey through the mind of a sociopath.

My Beautiful Black Dog

My Beautiful Black Dog
Aug 6-16 | 1:55pm | £6-10.50 | Underbelly, Cowgate

MUSICAL THEATRE – “Gig meets theatre meets tidal wave of glitter. A poetically wild musical exploring the beauteous complexity of our fragile minds. Depression is at its heart, but it’s not depressing – it’s joyous, funny and hopeful”.

Ross & Rachel

Ross & Rachel
Aug 6-16, 18-31 | 12:30pm | £6-11 | Assembly George Square Theatre

THEATRE – Ross & Rachel is a new play about romance, expectation and mortality – what happens when a couple destined to be together, gets together and stays together.

Tate Postmodern

Tate Postmodern
Aug 5-18 | 3:30pm | £8.50 | C Venues – C Nova

IMMERSIVE THEATRE – Tate Postmodern is an immersive theatrical experience where the audience is invited to enjoy “the full breadth of contemporary art in one visit, from Dulux colour boards to the gift store”. Featuring the final piece by performance artist Malina Brabramovic… who will kill one visitor to the gallery!

The Frida Kahlo of Penge West

The Frida Kahlo of Penge West
Aug 5-18, 20-31 | 5:10pm | £9.50-11.50 | C Venues – C Nova

THEATRE – How can we do justice to describing “a two-woman play about one woman’s ridiculous struggle to create a one-woman play about Frida Kahlo… with two women in it”? Perhaps we’ll just leave it at that.

The Gospel According to Jesus, Queen of Heaven

The Gospel According to Jesus, Queen of Heaven
Aug 5-9, 12-16, 19-23, 26-30 | 10:45am | £7-12 | Summerhall

THEATRE – Trans playwright, performer and poet Jo Clifford wrote and performs this combination of theatre, storytelling, spoken word and ritual.

The Misfit Analysis

The Misfit Analysis
Aug 23-31 | 2:15pm | £9-11 | Pleasance Courtyard

THEATRE – Multimedia, video projection and performance poetry combine in this exploration of an autistic mind which questions disability’s place in society.

This Much (or An Act of Violence Towards the Institution of Marriage)

This Much (or An Act of Violence Towards the Institution of Marriage)
Aug 7-15, 17-23, 25-31 | 7:45pm | £5-9 | ZOO

THEATRE – Moving Dust’s world-premiere staging of John Fitzpatrick’s play about how we define ourselves through our relationships. “Life’s a wedding disco. Let’s dance.”

Weekend Rockstars

Weekend Rockstars
Aug 6-16, 18-30 | 11:10pm | £6-10 | Underbelly, Cowgate

THEATRE – Weekend Rockstars, supported by Hull UK City of Culture 2017, asks what happens when our rocks start to fail us, and our stars don’t guide us where we thought they would? Written by Luke Barnes, featuring original music by James Frewer.

Wilting in Reverse

Wilting in Reverse
Aug 6-16, 18-23, 25-30 | 8:10pm | £6-11 | Underbelly, Cowgate

THEATRE – They Say: “A strangely compelling story with live music, vigorous dance moves, understandable words and a fair bit of profound (probably life-changing) body movement.”

17 Border Crossings

17 Border Crossings
Aug 5, 7-9, 12-16, 18-23, 25-30 | 6:35pm | £10-14 | Summerhall

THEATRE – Thaddeus Phillips is the brain behind this journey to the frontiers of Brazil, Serbia, Cuba, Bali, Israel, Colombia, Jordan, and Mexico which draws inspiration from the Balkan films of Emir Kustarica, the floor shows of the Tropicana in Havana, musicals about Austria, cheap magic, and native myths from the Amazon jungle.

Stuart Wilson

About 

I am Joint Editor at To Do List. I like: nice pubs, film marathons, not doing real marathons, bad comedy, plays/musicals with shorter second halves, and the Oxford comma.