Going to Edinburgh without being financially and emotionally crippled. Do we have to go?

Charlotte Cassey, 22 September 2012

Why do people even still go to Edinburgh? Surely the myth has been broken.

Ok but what if you are an emerging company - is it not the most concentrated way to get your work seen by promoters / venues / audiences? Or if you have an ‘Edinburgh following’ - would you not go back?

It has to be right - right venue, right slot, right reasons for going. There are no guarentees, but minimise your risk as much as you can.

There are other festivals out there, or go on a mini tour of arts centres - it'll be cheaper.

But how much cheaper? And will the promoters come? And forget the promoters - will audiences come? Will people not take more of a risk on a show at Edinburgh? Or has this years lack of queues not proven that no one wants to take a risk anymore?

Venues want to see work and Edinburgh is the cheapest / easiest / most convenient way for them to do this. Yet artists seem to be disillusioned with the whole thing. But we have to try to get our work seen.

Ahh, the old catch 22.







Just to be in it?

You got to be in it to win it.

Or do you?

Be REALLY CLEAR about why you are going and then you will be able to decide what you want to get out of it.

Ok, so say you've decided to go. Is there a way to make it in anyway viable - financially and emotionally?

Look at Northern Stage - are they getting it right? Is there something similair we could do in the south?

Is this a converstion we need to have with HOUSE? They took 30 promoters to see work this year - is there a way to guarantee they see work from the south, particularly the work by emerging artists. Artists are the ones taking the risk taking work up there - do House need to give us a little something in return for that risk?

Is there a conversation to be had with Gavin Stride from Farnham Maltings about a weekend's showcase with companies from the South East? A mini Edinburgh? A kin to the British Council Showcase?

How do you counter the culture of ‘Are you going to Edinburgh this year?’


'No?! Why not?!'

It is ok to do something that people don't expect, something less obvious. Our choices make us interesting.

And is there an emotional crutch?

Yes, a week in Dorset.


Risk, edinburgh, fringe, festivals, Edinburgh, Fringe, emerging companies, risk