Ravenhill to open #EdFringe 2013

Jul 4 2013 | By More

Inaugural “Welcome address” to participants planned

Mark Ravenhill

By Thom Dibdin

Mark Ravenhill is to give the first Welcome Address to Participants at the start of this year’s Edinburgh fringe, at Fringe Central, the Fringe Society’s festival hub, on Friday 2 August.

Under the title of Why You Have To Be a Liar, Vagabond and Thief To Put On A Show At The Fringe, the dramatist will argue that the arts world underwent a seismic shift after the crash of 2008 and that there will no return to the ‘old normal’.

Ravenhill, who has been acting, writing and working on shows at the fringe since 1985 but is still best known for his first full-length play in 1996, Shopping and Fucking, will say that artists and entertainers need new ways of operating: the accepted models of living and working are broken. More desperate and terrible measures are called for.

The address is expected to be followed by a “lively” debate.

Kath Mainland, Chief Executive of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society, said “I’m really looking forward to hearing Mark Ravenhill shake things up a bit at our first Welcome Address to Fringe participants.

“Fringe Central is the hub of the festival for all participants, a home from home for all those drawn to Edinburgh each year. It offers artists practical facilities and a place in which they can meet and learn from each other.

“Mark is a shining example of the Fringe ethos starting out as he did in student productions and returning to the Fringe throughout his career. We hope to make the Welcome Address an annual event”.

During the fringe, Ravenhill is directing Auden, Britten, Mitchell and Ravenhill: Tell Me the Truth About Love. The cabaret programme is transferring to Underbelly’s new Topside venue at the Festival Theatre Studio after a sell-out show at the Aldeburgh Festival in June, as part of the celebrations for the Britten Centenary.


The Welcome Address to Participants: Fringe Central, Crichton Street (Venue 2).
Friday 2 August, 3-4pm
Free, but ticketed. Email fringecentral@edfringe.com to reserve a place.


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