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The Fringe Festival goes on in the year of the Impossible

Yummy Deluxe at Melbourne Fringe 2019. (Photo: Theresa Harrison)

In the year of the impossible, Melbourne Fringe Festival will deliver a festival full of weird, wonderful, thought-provoking and boundary-pushing art. Being held from the 12-29 November, audiences can choose from 250 shows, all taking place either outdoors, digitally, in the home, via audio, behind glass or over the phone.

Many artists in this year’s Festival created their work in the most impossible, mid-pandemic circumstances, and the ingenuity and creativity of artists is in full swing. Big Day In sees Fringe music legend Ian Pidd create work inspired by the true story of his parent’s COVID-19 diagnosis while they were in an aged-care home. Recovering in isolation, Ian brought the music to them, playing outside their window. For Big Day In, a live band will play outside aged-care homes across Melbourne, also livestreamed online. Showing 24-29 November.

GB24: The Improvised Variety News Channel (pictured right) is a nightly news spoof comedy show by comedy duo Game Boys, featuring character interviews, sketches, unexpected surprises and special guests from the festival. Showing 12-29 November.

Such Is Now - Isolation Diorama Project 2020 is an installation by Australian contemporary artist, Jacqui Stockdale. Expect a peep show for all ages, to be viewed through two large eyes and a Ned Kelly Helmet painted on the window of the Rose Chong Costumiers shop. As a direct response to lockdown in Melbourne, Stockdale started making miniature versions of her recent solo exhibition at Linden New Art based on the re-telling of the Ned Kelly myth. She placed them in handmade dioramas based on Mexican folk art. Showing 12-29 November.

Losing Touch will take place at Abbotsford Convent as one of the first in-person events post Melbourne lockdown. This new performance artwork investigates touch, distance and technology in a dialogue-come-performance created in a long-distance collaboration between composer Antonia Barnett-McIntosh and performance artist Sara Cowdell. The show investigates the impact of touch in our lives and the lack of physical contact and connection we experience while socially-distanced. Showing 25 November.

Welcome to Bunt is a warm and silly sketch show about a small town of Aussie oddballs coming to grips with potential tourism and opening up their quiet outback town, by Elly Squire (aka Clara Cupcakes). Showing 24-29 November.

Creepy Boys (pictured left) features two Canadian queer artists who came to Australia for the Adelaide Fringe… and thanks to the pandemic have been stuck here ever since. Twin orphans, The Creepy Boys, are throwing their very first birthday party. It will have everything, games, gifts, possibly Satan, and probably cake. Showing 17-22 November.

Tomás Ford:…Come Have A Bath With Me is a live electronic pop performance performed from a bath, while audiences watch from home, also in a bath! Set up the laptop somewhere safe and join this Perth cabaret cult icon for some bath time fun. Showing 14-28 November.

The People of Cabaret’s variety gala will showcase a range of cabaret artists of colour, featuring a dazzling array of performances beamed in from interstate and around the globe. The People of Cabaret collective aims to uplift, celebrate and empower brilliant performers of colour from the worlds of cabaret, burlesque and circus. Showing 10, 17 and 24 November.

To view the full list of events on sale now, head to the Melbourne Fringe website here!


Dates: 12 - 29 November, 2020

Location: Multiple venues, particularly online

Melbourne Fringe Website

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