lessons from the fringe

This summer, I went to Edinburgh Fringe for the first time. You know, the magical festival every theatre-goer seems to have as the highlight of their year, the thing I seem to be very late to the party for.
I went up with my university theatre company, performing in one of the four shows we were taking up, and also did a few review things. It was intense and exhausting, but I loved every single second of it. Even the seconds where it rained or I was hungry or came down with the dreaded Fringe Flu. Here’s a list of things I ‘learnt’ whilst I was at Fringe, or rather, a collection of things which happened to me:


  1. Being in a show, seeing shows, and reviewing shows is very difficult and a bit much sometimes.
  2. The reason why is because I wasn’t in a show with my uni but then someone dropped out and I filled in four days before our London preview and then next thing I know I’m performing at the Space 45 every other day as a pirate. Yes you heard right.
  3. Speaking of pirates, doing a pirate accent on the Mile leads to people taking the mick out of you (if you don’t want to get flyered then don’t walk down the Mile, okay?)

    dead men
    The most fearsome pirates of all the seven Cs
  4. I’ve still not seen Pirates of the Caribbean and I don’t think I have any more of a desire to?
  5. There’s no bond like the bond a cast has when a show goes badly
  6. There’s also no bond like the bond a cast have when a show goes excellently
  7. Making friends with other shows at your venue is a good way of getting audiences
  8. People at the Fringe have such cool fashion sense
  9. Bring a blanket. And a pillow. The ones in the accomodation are shit and you will be freezing
  10. If there’s a Rocky Horror night, go to it. Do the make-up. Be provocotive. Don’t dream it, be it.
  11. The aforementioned Rocky Horror night will be one of the best nights of your life

    “With a bit of a mind flip…”
  12. But you don’t have to party all the time. Sleep is gooood.
  13. Pace yourself. There is a lot, especially if, like me, it’s your first ever Fringe
  14. FOMO is real and a bit shit sometimes
  15. However you plan it, you will miss out on shows. There’s just too many.
  16. It kind of feels like I’ve been playing catch-up by seeing shows I missed in London/at NSDF etc but that’s FINE
  17. Despite being here with your uni theatre company, you still don’t know everyone, so it’s nice to make new friends/solidify current friendships21078664_1802962223052687_1390442665662556358_n
  18. You will learn a LOT about your fellow Fringers, whether that be general things, their hygiene, or *whispers* confessions in ‘Never Have I Ever’ you’ll wish you hadn’t heard
  21. You will have a breakdown resulting in you pouring out what’s going on in your head to someone and it will be actually rather nice because you don’t usually open up and THANK YOU PERSON YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE
  22. Walking up Arthur’s Seat hungover on four hours sleep with all your friends will be the best experience of your life21222768_1550114355050021_1650812053_o
  23. Arthur’s Seat is easier than people say, but also bloody difficult and tiring
  24. But the view is spectacular
  25. Cuddle puddles are really nice
  26. ‘Lemons Lemons Lemons Lemons Lemons’ is such a good show and you wonder why you hadn’t seen/read it before
  27. You will constantly be in awe of everyone’s talents, from those you know to the strangers on the stage
  28. It is cold in Edinburgh. And rains a lot.

    A rare sunny day // candid to the nines
  29. Make sure you pack nicer going-out clothes as well as the day-to-day warm clothes
  30. Don’t be too optimistic about the amount of food you will cook
  31. Piemaker will become the love of your life
  32. You will wish you hadn’t booked so many shows, but also wish you’d booked more; such a conundrum
  33. Self-care is really important when you’re in such an intense environment
  34. That rain coat you bought in the sale at New Look the day before you left? EVERYONE on the Mile has it.
  36. The Fringe app is really slow and a bit annoying?
  37. Cheesy Chips from Uncles are yes yes very noice

    Beautiful cast photo up Arthur’s Seat
  38. Your dungarees breaking on a night out in C-Venues, resulting in you having one boob out all night, all whilst ‘Wannabe’ (your jam) by the Spice Girls is on, will be the biggest tragedy at the Fringe
  39. Tourists will love the large suit you have on the Mile as part of your show

    Nautilus: The Suit of Nightmares
  40. But kids will either hit you to get to it, or have a face full of fear
  41. Accompanying the suit for the best part of two weeks has lead to me thinking I could definitely get a job at Disneyland
  42. Your cast will be dreamboats and surprise you with birthday cake and a card because your birthday is the day after Fringe – and it is through this you’ll realise your true friendships
  43. The two weeks fly by so fast it’s a wonder you even got to forty points in this post
  44. Megabus can be a bit rubbish and leave you to do 14 hours of travelling instead of ten
  45. God bless Uber
  46. Ultimately, Fringe is the best time of your life


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