Almost 100 venues have already registered for next year’s Adelaide Fringe, with plans underway for COVID-safe events including open-air and promenade performances, says director and CEO Heather Croall.
Adelaide Fringe’s annual review released today shows it generated a record amount of spending in its 60th anniversary year, but director and CEO Heather Croall says it will need a big boost in government funding for 2021 to help attract artists post-COVID.
Sam Simmons brings his unique brand of weirdness back to the stage, delivering an absurdist diversion from post-apocalyptic gloom, environmental disaster and panic buying. ★★★ ½
Want to make the most of the final week of the Mad March mayhem? Here are some Adelaide Festival and Fringe shows to get fired up about, plus a selection of four and five-star performances you might have missed.
Dark comedy Gobby is a poignantly written production by a young woman living in a post #MeToo world. ★★★ ½
Festival season can give the wallet a battering, but if you go hunting there are dozens of fringe options for those in search of more affordable thrills.
Confessional comedian Larry Dean offers an hour of self-deprecating, crude humour with a side of rowdy boyish charm. ★★★★
Dreamgun: Film Reads’ take on The Silence of the Lambs is an outrageously funny show that left me craving a Chianti and fava beans, as well as more of their absurd brand of comedy. ★★★★ ½
Gone Girls is 55 minutes of quick-witted, captivating and sometimes titillating theatre, exploring how two female politicians from very different ideological parties manage power, leadership spills and #auspol. ★★★★ ½
The bomb’s gone off. You’ve survived the blast. How long would it take for you to lose the plot when faced with a life of total solitude? ★★★ ½
Erica Visser is like a kid in a lolly shop at this year’s Adelaide Fringe, attending three shows a night in The Garden of Unearthly Delights after winning a Golden Key to the parklands venue. With the Fringe heading towards its March 15 finale, Erica shares her some of her festival highlights.
Thunderstruck is a beautifully told story about a small boy who falls in love with the bagpipes just as the world-famous piper and bin man Gordon Duncan is pushing the boundaries of pipe music. ★★★★
This British stage adaptation of a literary classic has some up and down moments. ★★★ ½
Melbourne art rock band Tropical Fuck Storm performed a live score to award-winning neo-noir film No Country For Old Men, which should have left audiences transfixed but ultimately proved unsatisfying. ★★★
Bond: An Unauthorised Parody is a cheeky and entertaining one-man theatre experience at this year’s Adelaide Fringe. ★★★
Fancy yourself as someone who can spot the trick a mile away? Think again. In less than an hour, Magical will have you making an optometrist appointment. ★★★★★
Based on a 1917 story by Kafka, this powerful solo performance about a primate’s struggle to overcome the confines of captivity shows that history does repeat itself. ★★★★ ½
Have your boarding passes ready and check your expectations at the door as you prepare to embark on a frightening journey into the unknown with Flight. ★★★★ ½
The world’s most dangerous ukulele band are back, with their punk-rock attitude ripping into tunes and proving the uke is worth more than its weight in chords. ★★★★
This acrobatic tribute to the cult movie The Blues Brothers sees performers somersaulting across tables, balancing on top of chairs and almost getting singed underneath a flaming limbo stick. ★★★★
Are you prepared to feed a life-size dinosaur or have your head placed inside a T-Rex’s mouth? ★★★ ½
A night of cocktails and the suspension of reality with a line-up of Japanese magicians should leave revellers enchanted, not counting the minutes until the hour is up. ★★
Seven acrobats joyfully tumble, leap and bound to live percussion in this stripped-back and fun performance in Gluttony’s The Octagon. ★★★ ½
The line between dreams and reality is blurred, with often frightening results, in the spine-tingling immersive experience Coma. ★★★★★
It’s claimed that nostalgia ain’t what it used to be, but it’s indisputable that An Andrews Sisters Tribute time-shifts the Norwood Concert Hall with a charming program and polished performance that captivates its audience. ★★★★
High-flying and hilarious, Remi Martin’s L.I.A.R. (Life is a Rehearsal) is an unmissable experience pulsing with life. ★★★★ ½
Comedy hypnotism may sit outside the comfort zone of some festival-goers, or at least on the fringe. But that didn’t stop 20 eager volunteers approaching the stage to be put in a trance on the opening night of this show. ★★★★ ½
Far from slick and brazenly R18+, rising comedy star, social media provocateur and Utopia actress Nina Oyama is a welcome reprieve from the Fringe’s tried and trusted comedy line-up. ★★★★
Ever wanted to feel like you’re at a party in a giant flute of Champagne? Fill your glass, take your seat and let the bubbles wash over you as the latest iteration of Blanc de Blanc takes the stage in a grand encore. ★★★★ ½
Barbaroi is circus with attitude: a dystopian-styled display of daring acrobatics that is all grit, no glitter. ★★★★
Some pubs have a darts team, this pub has a choir. ★★★★★
What’s at stake when a child takes on the role of a parent? As a young girl fights to keep her family together in her mother’s absence, she’s forced to make difficult decisions. ★★★★
Saturated in emotional truth and unapologetically low-fi, Train Lord is testament to the powerful potential of Fringe shows that hark back to the no-frills days of the festival’s past. ★★★★
Well does he – come clean, that is? ‘Yes and no’ might not make a satisfactory answer for most situations but it suits this performance perfectly. ★★★★
The Greek tragic love story Orpheus is brought to life in this Fringe show at the Adelaide Botanic Gardens, where roses and bats make the perfect minimalist setting. ★★★★½
Three of the best comedians from the Edinburgh Fringe Festival roused a small crowd in a large tent to laughter – with one obvious standout performer. ★★★
An actress confronts her demons in this debut play by a new amateur theatre company adding a fresh twist to SA’s theatrical scene. ★★½
Looking for laughs at the Adelaide Fringe? Here are six international artists and emerging Australian comedians you may not have heard of or seen yet who are selling out shows and scooping awards all over the festivals scene.
The Garden of Unearthly Delights left Adelaide for the first time in its 20-year history yesterday, staging a 10-act gala show for 1200 people on Kangaroo Island.
A capella, beatbox, and themes such as modern technology and body dysmorphia are neatly stitched together in a scintillating show that breathes new life into Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. ★★★★ ½
With little more than 30 metres of thick, white rope and the strength of their own bodies, the performers of One Fell Swoop circus deliver an hour of aerial acrobatic perfection. ★★★★
It’s Cheap Tuesday at the Fringe, and while that’s great for punters, it’s also a chance for emerging artists to build their profile and find new audiences.
CityMag lifts the veil on where to perch throughout the festival season, with critical insights from those who ought to know.