What to see at Rotunda before the end of Brighton Fringe

Rotunda Theatre is a unique, “pop up” theatre space that travels from place to place in the safe hands of Michelle Yim and Ross Ericson from Grist to the Mill Productions. It’s next port of call is Tunbridge Wells Fringe. It’s legendary geodesic domes (named Bubble and Squeak) house arts across all the genres and you can find it in Regency Square Brighton during Brighton Fringe. The Rotunda Theatre launched at Buxton Festival Fringe 2017 in July. 

Browse the programme here

So, what theatre is on offer for the rest of the Fringe?

We have to recommend one last chance to see The Balld of Mulan on Tues 22nd May at 6pm. “Woman, warrior, Legend. For ten years Mulan disguised as a man, has fought for the Chinese Empire. Now the fighting is coming to an end, one last battle and she will be going home – but can she return to her old life, become a woman again. A search for identity in a violent world.” Book here. Our reviewer rated it a Hidden Gem. read the review here.

Written and performed by Marie Hamilton with Fringe First winning director Hildegard Ryan, and Berlin-based, Cameron Mackintosh Award winning composer Ben Osborn, Madonna on the Rocks is for anyone who’s been f*cked up by their mums and dads, or living in fear they’re doomed to do some f*cking up themselves. It’s about our egos, our responsibilities and our dreams. It’s about madness and maternal rage, and the struggle to be an artist, or to have any sort of career at all really, and be a parent at the same time. Book here for various remaining evening dates.

A must see is award-winning Eigengrau, playing at lunchtime. “In a world where opposites attract, Eigengrau begs to ask if this is always the case? Set in the bustling city of London, a location where you couldn’t be closer in physical proximity, and yet feel so far apart, we see how looking for the right person can lead you to all the wrong places.”

For some solo life-affirmig comedy, “from the award winning creator of BBC Three’s WHITE VAN MAN, returning to the stage for the first time in over a decade with his most honest, personal, hilarious and heartbreaking of shows.” see the later evening Adrian Poynton: Ashes.

If you missed the excellent version of Art, at the Ironworks earlier in the Fringe, directed by Roger Kay and Pretty Villain, you might want to catch another version at Rotunda. This one, directed by Elsa Pahl, takes place mid-arfternoon. Bookings and times here. “A play about the ups and downs of friendship – with all the emotions in between!”

For some sketch comedy, get along to Hill and Jones Sketch Comedy Show, running late afternoon. For more sketch comedy, you might also want to see And Now running at 9pm. “Fresh from a critically acclaimed run at Edinburgh Fringe 2023, Southampton’s Thrown Together Theatre present a wild ride through their collective mind – a channel-flicking, ricochet fever dream like none other.”

For some late evening theatre, you might try some hour long “highly physical, modern-gothic/horror-comedy” that “explores the changing face of modern work and the impending identity crises we face as a society searching for purpose and coming to terms with ‘the end of work’“. The Unstoppable Rise of Ben Manager runs at 9.15pm. “Meet BEN WEAVER. A hapless anti-hero who wants to prove his worth to his Mum and get a proper job. Ben wants to be part of something bigger than himself. To have a job with progression. To get a job as a manager. And after that, one day he might get the chance to be the man who man-manages-the-managers. Fingers crossed….

Pretty Witty Nell is “Rogue Shakespeare’s one-woman verse tragicomedy about Nell Gwynne – famous actress, prostitute & mistress of King Charles II” It “tells the true story of Nell Gwynne, the famous actress/prostitute, and mistress of the wild British monarch, King Charles II.”

Georgie Steele’s award-winning show about family disability and being an accidental carer returns to Brighton Fringe. And I’ll Blow Your House Down was winner of the Legal and General Brighton Fringe Award for Inclusion 2023.

For some theatre in the evening, Flat 4 is about platonic love, a “story about the soulmates found in friendship and everything that comes with it.” Performed and written by Isabel Songer, you can book here. “Combining  theatre and spoken word poetry, this performance unveils the dramas of  two young women navigating life in their early twenties under one roof.  Set in a small flat, watch as walking red flags, toxic habits, and  unhealthy relationships become hard to hide”

For something important and unique 1, 2, 3. sh*t. that’s my OCD should be on your Rotunda bucket list. Drawing upon real stories, this show is “A monologue full of 1, 2, 3’s, changing from verse to prose and prose to verse where Tina deconstructs the reasons why and how she lives with this condition. In this short play we focus on the Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder of violence and sexual abuse, which worsened this young girl’s Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and developed it to a place where she didn’t feel “normal”.”

For some acclaimed stand-up comedy, Chin Wang: Wang’s Republic runs on the last two days of the Fringe. “Fresh from Edinburgh Fringe, this debut is all about the oddities of British culture, the illogical language of English, and also a few hazard warnings for any first generation immigrants from East Asia to the UK. (This show should not be used as a survival guide, but it could be, though.)”

And that’s it for now. There are many other shows to catch in Bubble and Squeak at the Rotunda. These should get your started before it is all over for this year.