15 Jul The Edinburgh Festival 2012
The Edinburgh Festival 2012: It’s that time of year again when the streets of Edinburgh come alive with international spectators and participants of the Fringe Festival; running from the 3rd to 27th August 2012, it is known to be the largest arts festival in the world.
The Festival Fringe Society was officially formed in 1959, thanks to the pioneering efforts of a few theatre groups. They appeared in the 1947 staging of the Edinburgh International Festival as uninvited performers and others followed suit over the years. The original Society ethos has not been changed in all the decades that the show has been seen in Scotland; ‘The Society shall not take part in vetting the festival programme’. This has allowed for unique talents to be showcased without prejudice and in so doing, attracts a diverse audience.
The official Fringe website offers an interactive venue map to make finding your chosen show easy. This, together with their comprehensive category listing, is a great tool. Navigate your way through the multitude of children’s shows, cabaret, exhibitions, dance and physical theatre, stand-up comedy, music and operatic performances and make your choice out of 2400 events. If you prefer not to plan your stay in Edinburgh too carefully, pop along to the Fringe Half-Price Hut; here you can usually find tickets on offer at discounted prices for shows of the day.
Opening its doors on the 21st July after 18 months of a £9.3 million restoration project, The Assembly Rooms has been known to visitors and residents of Edinburgh alike for 250 years. This has been a popular venue for staging Fringe shows and 54; George Street will be hosting a good variety of comedy, live music and theatre during the month of August. The famous Spielgetent will be housed in the open-air terrace and you will experience true Scottish ambiance.
Another great venue is Paradise in Augustine’s. You will find this on the George IV Bridge, one minute away from The Royal Mile. This year it will showcase over 50 shows and feature genres such as puppetry, drama and story-telling. Their team is made up of volunteers who have the love of the Festival in common and are ready to welcome you. ‘Africa Calling’, a show from The Grassroots Theatre Company in Zimbabwe, will show you why they were such a sell-out success in last year’s Festival. Their traditional dance scenes filled with warm African rhythms and songs are sure to put a smile on the faces of the audience.
If you don’t mind all the hustle and bustle that goes on 24 hours a day during the Festival, you may want to look for cheap hotels in Edinburgh city centre. Edinburgh is well set up for pedestrians and most events are within walking distance; Old Town festival venues are a stone’s throw away from each other, otherwise Lothian buses and taxis will offer visitors great transport at a reasonable cost. From university rooms to self-catering apartments, bed and breakfasts to sumptuous hotel rooms, the choice of accommodation in this magical city is huge. Look up great hotel deals to help make up your mind.