Well, I guess I failed to be very interesting this Fringe in terms of writing much! A bout of Fringe-itis in the middle didn’t help. How are you? Healthy? TIRED!? I hope you’ve had a fabulous time – no doubt some processing space will need to occur over the next few days.
Me? Thanks for asking. Well even doing Spoken Word/Comedy I’ve covered costs, had interest from bookers for future gigs, and made some new friends. Audience figures were up and down, and that seems to be a common theme overall. How many shows this year? Over 4000? Is the Fringe finally eating itself? Same discussions each year!
I’m not great at seeing shows. I tend to see some but find the daily admin is annoyingly persistent, and energy levels can fluctuate too. I saw one surprise (that’s that one show I actually went to having been given a flyer, so I guess you’d have to say it does work, at least to a degree). It was jolly good too! So I’m already thinking about next year, and I guess that’s a little ironic as we work out whether Edinburgh is actually worth doing – really. Is it a drug? (Discuss). Rising costs; accommodation – which seems this year for the first time to have actually introduced a competitive element due to fewer properties; a finite audience, being split into smaller fractions at each show attendance; a dwindling post-Edinburgh touring infrastructure, with more risk aversion and less funding…
Reviews… did you get any? I got one. I don’t think Spoken Word (if that’s the genre in the brochure you’re in) seems very interesting to reviewers in general, which is a shame given its diversity and richness of language. Might I urge ALL publications to get someone on your team(s) that will go see? We do use your pull-quotes on future print, so it’s not a waste of your time…
For me, in the end, it’s about people. I’ve met some new folk, mostly through being at a new venue, and they’re lovely. My venue staff were lovely. Being social was lovely. Maybe that’s the addiction in the end, and if so, it’s not a bad one. A chance to touch base, hear plans from peers and colleagues, hatch new ones and open doors to future work and collaborations.
Don’t dismiss your experience yet. Take heart if you’re down just now (you probably just need a nap) and keep the flag of your creativity flying. Go hug a tree, paddle in an ocean, look at a view, have a picnic.
I’m heading North for five days to do all the above – then a deep breath will signal the start of the follow-up admin, emails and planning.