A Feminist’s Guide to the Festivals: Song and dance for the feminist Fringe-goer (in time order)


From established hits like Hot Brown Honey and Fringe Wives Club to brand-new shows such as Cora Bissett’s autobiographical What Girls Are Made Of and the wonderfully titled Vulvarine: A New Musical, there’s sure to be something here to get your toes tapping.

Baby Daddy
“‘The day I’ve been dreading arrives. All the answers I have prepared go out of my head when she asks me, “where’s my Daddy?”‘ A painfully honest insight into the world of a young single mother, this autobiographical piece is about looking for answers in the wrong places and facing up to your responsibilities when you’ve bitten off more than you can chew. Written and performed by Elinor Coleman, with live onstage music, Baby Daddy is a funny, rude and infectious musical account of life in your twenties with a baby in tow.”

One Woman Sex and the City
“Parody on love, friendship and shoes. A loving send-up takes audiences through a laughter-infused six seasons of the beloved show. Comedic whirling dervish Kerry Ipema portrays Carrie, Samantha, Charlotte and Miranda as they brunch, banter, argue and swoon over men and Manolos. For anyone who remembers the naked dress, the tantric sex demonstration, the post-it note, and ‘he’s just not that into you’, this wonderful parody will provide a great reminder of why this series and its characters have stayed so firmly in our hearts and minds. The ultimate girls night out.”

Vulvarine: A New Musical
“From the creators of the sell-out hit Buzz: A New Musical. Bryony Buckle is astoundingly average. Her days are filled with mind-numbing office work, thinking about lunch and lusting after Orson Bloom from IT. But following a dose of hormone therapy gone wrong and a well-timed bolt of lightning, Bryony gains superhero abilities and a brand-new persona: Vulvarine, saviour of womankind. Where is all the tampon tax going? Who is The Mansplainer and what is his evil plan? Grab your tights, your spanx and your most supportive sports bra. It’s hero time.”

Hot Brown Honey
“Hot Brown Honey turn up the heat with lashings of sass and a hot pinch of empowerment in the smash-hit, genre-defying, award-winning firecracker of a show that’s taken the world by storm. ‘It’s phenomenal’ ***** (Scotsman). ‘A loud, proud evening of consciousness raising’ ***** (Vancouver Sun). ‘Phenomenal, powerful and an absolute joy’ ***** (ThePerthProject.com). ‘A truly groundbreaking production unlike anything you’ve ever seen before – an independent feminist masterpiece’ ***** (UpstagedManchester.com). Winner: ThreeWeeks Editors’ Award 2017. Winner: Best Cabaret Production – Helpmann Awards 2017. Winner: Experimentation, Innovation and Playing with Form – Total Theatre Awards 2016.”

Fringe Wives Club: Glittery Clittery
“Winner: Best Cabaret, Adelaide Fringe 2018. Nominated: Best Newcomer, Melbourne Comedy Festival 2017. ‘A cult feminist disco not to miss’ ***** (Fest). Named a Top Five Adelaide Fringe Show by the Guardian, this champagne-fuelled power trio are unleashing their debut with original songs, epic dance moves and an explosion of sequins! This ‘irresistibly energetic’ (Chortle.co.uk) extravaganza is fierce, feminist and furiously funny. Starring Victoria Falconer (Time Out London’s Top 10 Cabaret Stars, EastEnd Cabaret), Tessa Waters (Winner: Best Comedy Weekly, Adelaide Fringe 2017) and Rowena Hutson (Winner: Best Comedy, Melbourne Fringe 2015).”

22:30-23:15 (Aug 3-11 only)
What the … Feminist?!
“Sexism getting you down? Never fear! Join us as we dismantle the patriarchy, one song and dance at a time. Fresh from a sell-out, five-star run in London, What the… Feminist?! is an action-packed sketch show, featuring original songs and questionable choreography. Acclaimed by critics as ‘a cross between The Book of Mormon and How To Succeed In Business Without Really Trying’ (LondonTheatre1.com) and ‘the perfect balance of witty and uncomfortable’ (ThoughtsFromJasmine.wordpress.com), you won’t want to miss Bits‘n’Bobs Theatre Company’s Edinburgh Fringe debut. ***** (Everything-Theatre.co.uk). **** (LondonTheatre1.com). **** (TheSpyInTheStalls.com).”

Times vary
Girl World
“Is this a pop-tastic wonderland? Or a foul-mouthed, sex-obsessed battleground with no chance of escape? A playful and provocative coming-of-age comedy. Set in a hellacious no man’s land with live band, song and dance, goddess-worship, violence, octopus birthing and Beckett-tinged woe-begottenness. It’s ‘a whirlwind of naivety, innuendo and fully-blown expletives that has its audience splitting at the seams’ (AYoungerTheatre.com). ‘Extraordinarily funny, always sympathetic’ (OutcastStudios.co.uk). ‘Innocent and subversive all at the same time’ (TheTung.co.uk). A new musical play from the producers of Fringe hit Pussy. Beware the Hole!”

Time vary
“Choreographed to the music of Christine and the Queens and Perfume Genius, Constant Vigier’s response to the French motto ‘liberté, egalité, fraternité’ examines womanhood and how freedom and equality should be rights accorded regardless of gender. Three dancers create portraits of the place of women in our society, from the happy housewife to the ambitious businesswoman. In the fight for gender equality, the line between choices and labels is very fine and contradictory gendered perspectives complicate where this line lies. Is the label ‘feminist’ more weight than power?”

Times vary
What Girls Are Made Of
“In 1992 a schoolgirl from Fife was catapulted to a rock star life in an indie band. Touring with Radiohead, partying with Blur, she was living the dream. Until she wasn’t. Based on her teenage diaries, this is the true story of Cora Bissett’s rollercoaster journey from the girl she was to the woman she wanted to be. Performing with a live band, directed by Orla O’Loughlin, Cora celebrates life’s euphoric highs and epic shitstorms, asking what wisdom we should pass to the next generation and which glorious mistakes we should let them make. http://www.madeinscotlandshowcase.com”


Published by Shona Craven

Writer, editor, talking head

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