EdFringe Theatre – Grassroots Companies

Jul 30 2019 | By More

Edinburgh’s Grassroots theatre companies at EdFringe

As the fringe continues to grow, so does the input from Edinburgh-based companies. This year there are an unprecedented 93 different productions in the theatre section of the Fringe programme alone.

That includes 40 productions the grassroots sector, listed on this page, as well as the youth, student, amateur and professional sectors

Blood and Gold: Mara Menzies

In order to make things clearer, we have divided the listing up into four parts. On this page you can find an alphabetical listing of all the productions being staged by the city’s excellent Grassroots theatre companies.

The rest of the theatre productions are listed here:
Theatre by Edinburgh’s Amateur companies
Theatre by Edinburgh’s Grassroots companies
Theatre by Edinburgh’s Youth and Student companies
Theatre by Edinburgh’s Professional companies

These distinctions are sometimes slightly arbitrary, and professional companies also mentor youth companies so do look through the different sections. Also, don’t forget to look at what is on in the Musical Theatre, Children’s and Dance sections.

Grassroots Theatre Listings:

(Can This Be) Home
Brite Theater
Scottish Storytelling Centre (Venue 30)
15 – 19 Aug: 12:00 (1 hour)
Half music concert, half spoken word performance, examining the impact of Brexit, taking stock of where we are now. Can we ever feel at home again? New Territories Award (Prague Fringe, 2018). Book here.

1902 .
Saltire Sky Theatre
Wee Red Bar (Venue 506)
2 – 26 Aug (not 7, 14, 21): 19:30 (1 hour 15 minutes)
Saltire Sky’s hit debut show is back. Follow these fearless young Scots in their quest to see their heroes lift the Scottish Cup. Laughter, tears and bevy are guaranteed in this electric piece of new writing. Book here.

Adam Smith: The Invisible Hand
In Company Theatre Productions and Edinburgh Business School
Panmure House (Venue 305)
1 – 25 Aug (not 5, 12, 19): 16:00 (1 hour 5 minutes)
What would happen if the lost papers of a genius were recovered in the modern day? Four actors present a dramatisation of the life and works of Adam Smith performed inside his former home. Book here.

Twelve Twelve Theatre and New Celts Productions
theSpace on the Mile (Venue 39)
4 – 24 Aug (even dates): 15:30 (1 hour)
Tony and Mel are stuck in Budapest Airport with nothing but each other for company. Two strangers and four suitcases take centre stage in this twisted play about life, death and everything in-between. Book here.

Broadsword Theatre LTD
Greenside @ Infirmary Street (Venue 236)
12 – 17 Aug: 13:45 (1 hour)
A remote island. An enigmatic cult. A young couple in search of a fresh start. Atlantis is a dark new drama from Broadsword Theatre exploring trust, betrayal and the power of persuasion. Book here.

Being Frank About Sinatra
Atina Arts
Paradise in The Vault (Venue 29)
12 – 25 Aug (not 18): 19:50 (55 minutes)
Being Frank About Sinatra includes songs from Sinatra’s back catalogue and opens doors to Frank Sinatra’s dealings with the American Mafia, as well as taking a little look at Frank’s ill health in his later years. Book here.

Blood and Gold
Mara Menzies
Scottish Storytelling Centre (Venue 30)
1 – 26 Aug (not 12, 19): 14:00 (1 hour)
Ancient mythology and modern storytelling collide in a contemporary exploration of the legacy of colonialism and slavery. Humour and tragedy express the fragile nature of identity and belonging. ‘Mesmerising performance storytelling’ Book here.

Brief History of the Fragile Male Ego
Jordan and Skinner
Pleasance Dome (Venue 23)
31 Jul, 1 – 26 Aug (not 14, 21): 16:00 (1 hour)
The multi award-winning Jordan & Skinner present a riotous new solo show that cuts to the bone of gender politics. Andrea has been giving her lecture but it’s not been going well – previous events were marred by protests and she’s hoping the open-minded audience at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe will hear her out. You see, half the world is suffering under the weight of a heavy burden. If we’re not careful everything will smash. And we wouldn’t want that now, would we. Book here.

Broken Funnies
Martin Bearne
Scottish Comedy Festival @ Nightcap (Venue 383)
2 – 26 Aug (not 12, 19/20): 14:15 (1 hour)
Martin Bearne is a struggling stand-up comedian (‘killer one-liners’ (Scotsman)), but can he make his therapist laugh? Will she even find him funny? Or will she find something else… Book here.

Brooklyn Scotsman
Loose Endz Entertainment
Hill Street Theatre (Venue 41)
2 – 25 Aug: 19:30 (1 hour)
A teenage Scottish rapper leaves home to pursue his dreams across the Atlantic in New York City. Venturing into the unknown, Stevie finds himself living in one of the roughest ghettos in Brooklyn, where he will encounter sex, violence, drugs and so much more. A brutally honest coming-of-age story, Loose Endz Entertainment presents The Brooklyn Scotsman by Stevie Creed and Liam Rudden. Inspired by the life and works of rapper and writer Stevie Creed, it is an electric and action-packed piece of theatre, certain to evoke all kinds of emotions. Book here.

Arbery Productions
theSpace @ Niddry St (Venue 9)
12 – 24 Aug (not 18): 17:20 (50 minutes)
One of three office workers is about to lose their job. Mike Bartlett’s razor-sharp play about the fine line between office politics and playground bullying exposes the vicious side of human nature and the power of words. Book here.

Cadaver Synod
Sweet Grassmarket (Venue 18)
19 – 25 Aug: 21:00 (1 hour)
897: the Pope makes history putting his predecessor’s corpse on trial. Charges are petty but the PR boom potentially priceless. Unless the people, moved to anger at a shallow sacrilegious act of political theatre, make their voices heard. Book here.

Candy Factory
Saltire Sky Theatre
Wee Red Bar (Venue 506)
2 – 26 Aug (not 7, 14, 21): 17:00 (1 hour 15 minutes)
Hard drugs and hard time are a recipe for mayhem in Saltire Sky’s latest production. A hilarious, bold and heart-wrenching dark comedy from the exciting young company that brought you the critically acclaimed 1902. Book here.

Collection of Professor Novak
Paul Novak performer / PBH’s Free Fringe
PBH’s Free Fringe @ The Outhouse Bar (Venue 99)
3 – 25 Aug (not 5, 12, 19): 20:30 (1 hour)
Victorian psychic investigator Professor Novak will discuss his investigations, such as the Body Parts Club and Adams the bloody photographer. Expect gruesome tales of madness, mutilation, murder and the strange. Book here.

Don’t Frighten the Straights!
Turan Ali
Paradise in Augustines (Venue 152)
3 – 25 Aug (not 11, 18): 21:55 (1 hour)
Outrageous, hilarious, unbelievably true, queer stories from the mouthy, old, ethnic poof. BBC comedy/drama writer/director and international slut, Turan Ali, shares global queer tales galore. Heard on BBC Radio 4. Sold-out previews: Vienna’s English Theatre. Book here.

Grandmothers Grimm
Some Kind of Theatre
Paradise in The Vault (Venue 29)
3 – 17 Aug (not 11): 21:15 (1 hour)
Cannibalism, werewolf trials, deceit, and murder: Marie Hassenpflug and the Brothers Grimm are editing the darkness out of old stories. But as they do so, the voices of the women who created these tales are lost… Book here.

Green Knight
Debbie Cannon
Scottish Poetry Library (Venue 203)
7, 9/10, 13/14 Aug: 19:30 (1 hour)
Christmas at Camelot: a monstrous green warrior issues an unwinnable challenge to Arthur’s finest knight. What if the story was retold by the woman at its heart? ‘Superlative… storytelling theatre’ Book here.

Happiness Project
Creative Electric
Army @ The Fringe in Association with Summerhall (Venue 210)
2 – 4, 9 – 11, 16- 18, 23 – 25 Aug: 14:20 (50 minutes)
At first you feel a winding pain… you get used to it, then you develop a liking to it… The Happiness Project explores our need for non-sexual physical contact in our highly digital era. Book here.

Heir Heads
Pretty Knickers Productions
theSpace on North Bridge (Venue 36)
19 – 24 Aug: 18:35 (50 minutes)
Three sisters stand to inherit their family’s enormous wealth, until a mysterious young man with a greater claim to the fortune appears. How far are they willing to go to keep their wealth in the family? Book here.

Active Inquiry
Just Festival at St John’s (Venue 127)
9/10, 16/17 Aug: 16:00 (1 hour 15 minutes)
There is no place like Home – but what is it? What does home mean if you don’t have one? Or if it is a place you are scared to be in or to leave? Book here.

Ivory Wings
Coreth Arts
Assembly Rooms (Venue 20)
1 – 24 Aug (not 12, 19): 11:50 (1 hour)
Ivory Wings is a one-woman show with a live piano score. It explores Alzheimer’s and the therapeutic effects of music on patients’ memory, whilst celebrating the remarkable women of the Air Transport Auxiliary whose job it was to deliver wartime aircraft from the factories to the RAF bases during World War II. Throughout the play, the protagonist, Virginia, drifts between her elderly Alzheimer’s state and her 28-year-old self, looking back at her time flying Spitfires and Hurricanes, her memories triggered by music. Book here.

Jock Tamson’s Bairns
Civil Disobedience
Laughing Horse @ Ghillie Dhu (Venue 410)
21/22, 25 Aug: 19:00 (3 hours)
Part drag, part interactive cabaret, this 180-minute theatrical experience explores queer culture and the bystander effect. Set in an after-hours gay bar, it mixes storytelling with live music performances and open space discussion. ‘Consistently powerful’ (List). Book here.

Lament of Dorothy Wordsworth
PenPal Productions
Paradise in The Vault (Venue 29)
12 – 25 Aug (not 18): 10:30 (50 minutes)
Dorothy’s finally living in domestic and literary bliss with her brother William – until she discovers William wishes to marry their friend Mary. Distraught, Dorothy must decide: share William, or renounce the life she loves? Book here.

Cade & MacAskill in association with Take Me Somewhere
Summerhall (Venue 26)
8 – 25 Aug (not 12, 19): 13:30 (1 hour)
Doppelganger DJs Barry and Barry desperately seek connection with the world beyond… Two of Scotland’s finest live artists, Rosana Cade (Walking:Holding, Sister) and Ivor MacAskill (STUD, Alma Mater), spew out their dark and riotous take on modern communication, as the identical hosts in a surreal phone-in talk show. Finding humour, warmth and despair in the absurd, they spin a thick web of cliches and catchphrases in their outer space echo-chamber, accompanied by a weird, wild soundscape by Yas Clarke. Book here.

My Name Is Irrelevant
Matthew Hall
Summerhall (Venue 26)
31 Jul, 2 – 25 Aug (not 12, 19): 17:45 (1 hour)
Æ review of 2017 production: ★★★★☆ Thoughtful.
In a world created by your imagination it can be difficult to work out what is fiction and what is reality. A man gives a lecture about all of the people he has met in his life, but as his stories escalate we start to see the inner workings of a confused brain. Book here.

Number, Please.
Paradise in Augustines (Venue 152)
3 – 25 Aug (not 11, 18): 16:50 (50 minutes)
1952. An unsuspecting switchboard operator becomes embroiled in an international plot to destroy the world. Can she, the not-so-innocent bystander, save the world? Or will her lack of experience and necessary skills drag the mismatched team down? Book here.

Altered States Theatre
Greenside @ Nicolson Square (Venue 209)
13 – 17 Aug: 23:15 (1 hour)
A play about a woman who becomes an activist. Book here.

Pink House
Paradigm Lab
PQA Venues @Riddle’s Court (Venue 277)
10 – 26 Aug: 15:30 (50 minutes)
The story of a tangled relationship between an adopted daughter and her estranged Jewish grandmother. As the two forge a tense yet familial relationship, history haunts them and constantly threatens to tear them apart. Book here.

Reservoir Dugs
Cat O’ Nine Tales
theSpace @ Venue45 (Venue 45)
9 – 17 Aug (not 11): 20:20 (50 minutes)
Scotland’s answer to a Tarantino classic. How will four criminals react when their jewellery heist goes horribly wrong? Book here.

Sad Eyes to Smile With
Activising for Change
Greenside @ Infirmary Street (Venue 236)
12 – 24 Aug (not 18): 12:35 (50 minutes)
Queer identity plus slam poetry divided by austerity and multiplied by three. It’s odd socks, deadline chasing, ice cream, and brown envelopes from the DWP. Being thrown off a cliff and enjoying the scenery. Book here.

Silence in Court
Edinburgh Little Theatre
Hill Street Theatre (Venue 41)
2 – 25 Aug: 17:10 (1 hour 5 minutes)
A play, a pie and a drink are all included. But did the crime take place or not? A courtroom drama where you are the jury. Hear the evidence, you decide the outcome. A must-see. Book here.

Arbery Productions
theSpace @ Niddry St (Venue 9)
2 – 10 Aug (not 4): 17:20 (45 minutes)
At the end of the day a grandmother remembers her first date, the man she married and the ups and downs of their life together. An intense and moving portrait from Maggie Macleod. Book here.

Anomaly Theatre Company
theSpace on North Bridge (Venue 36)
12 – 24 Aug (not 18): 21:10, 11:20 (50 minutes)
Privacy is dead. It just doesn’t know it yet. A government hacker who sees too much. A university forcibly chipping its students. And what happens when social media becomes sociopathic? Three dark comedies scrutinising the world that scrutinises us. Book here.

Swallow the Sea Caravan Theatre
Swallow the Sea Caravan Theatre
Summerhall (Venue 26)
2 – 25 Aug: Various (20 minutes)
Join us inside a converted 1970s caravan for puppetry, shadows, absurd object theatre and live soundscapes to get lost in. Escape into a wildly different world where no experience is ever the same. Details: www.swallowthesea/where-and-when Book here.

Thief by Liam Rudden
Edinburgh Little Theatre
Hill Street Theatre (Venue 41)
2 – 25 Aug: 18:20 (1 hour)
Sailor thrives in bars, dives and doss houses. He lives for robbery and expulsion. Join him. This award-winning dark piece of theatre by Liam Rudden will leave you disturbed yet spellbound. Not for the easily offended. Book here.

This Script
Jenny Lindsay
Scottish Storytelling Centre (Venue 30)
4 – 11 Aug: 16:00 (1 hour 5 minutes)
At a time of schisms within feminism, where sirens are the soundtrack to our newsfeeds, This Script combines poetic memoir with a fierce call for empathy. ‘One of this year’s most necessary spoken word performances’ (TheWeeReview.com). Book here.

David Colvin
Assembly Checkpoint (Venue 322)
31 Jul, 1 – 26 Aug (not 12, 19): 14:45 (1 hour 15 minutes)
The tragic and comic tale of the greatest bagpiper of all time, a bin man, who rocked traditions and changed the life of one young piper forever. Leave whatever romantic notions you have of bagpipes at the door. Book here.

Umbrella Man
Teuchter Company – Colin Bramwell
Summerhall (Venue 26)
31 Jul, 1 – 25 Aug (not 7, 12, 20): 10:00 (1 hour)
The story of a man who tries to prove the Earth is flat. Hilarious, moving, Scottish spoken word theatre. ‘A beautiful amalgamation of storytelling, poetry, drama, comedy and music. A monumental triumph’. Book here.

War of Two Halves
This is My Story Productions
Tynecastle Park (Venue 547)
7 – 26 Aug (not 10): 15:30, 18:00, 19:30, 20:30 (1 hour 45 minutes)
1914. Edinburgh’s Heart of Midlothian Football Club have won nineteen matches and are on the brink of winning the League Championship. In a show of extraordinary camaraderie and courage, thirteen players enlist to serve in McCrae’s Battalion. This is their story: an evocative, atmospheric and dramatic journey through Tynecastle Park Stadium in a unique, immersive, site-specific performance. Book here.

Where Do Fairies Come From?
TypeCast Productions
Paradise in Augustines (Venue 152)
2 – 17 Aug (not 4, 11): 10:15, 19:50 (1 hour)
From early Celtic tradition, through Shakespearean superstition to modern high fantasy, everyone has heard of fairies. ‘Give us your hands if we be friends’. Or, if you prefer… clap if you believe. Book here.

Click the following links for listings of:

Theatre by Edinburgh’s Amateur companies
Theatre by Edinburgh’s Grassroots companies
Theatre by Edinburgh’s Youth and Student companies
Theatre by Edinburgh’s Professional companies
Musical Theatre by Edinburgh-based companies
Children’s Theatre by Edinburgh-based companies
Dance, Cabaret and Spoken Word by Edinburgh-based companies

If your show should be in this listing but isn’t, or you feel it has been put in the wrong heading, please do contact us.


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