Theatre Snob's guide to a day at the Fringe
In the interests of anyone thinking of a day trip to the Fringe, and following on from the Fringe guides I’ve written over the last couple of years, here are my tips:
1. Plan ahead. It is possible to get there in time for Shakespeare for Breakfast, but you need to get your tickets in advance, as the Fringe office doesn’t open in time to pick them up.
2. Where possible, select some shows with food (see Shakespeare for Breakfast, there are also shows which provide cake!) or take snacks with you. The Pleasance bar had sold out of crisps!!
3. Plan your venues, so you’re not chasing from Old Town to New Town and back again. I didn’t venture across to the New Town at all, and all my venues were within easy reach of each other.
4. Don’t queue for tickets at the Fringe Office. Most main venues have their own box office or internet access, so you can purchase tickets, or print out pre-booked ones, without queuing
5. Give yourself some breathing space. Smell the coffee, (and drink some too, with an early start, you’ll need the caffeine), even if you only have an hour between shows.
6. Absorb the atmosphere. Pleasance Courtyard/Pleasance Dome are great places to people watch. The Dome also has a good range of snacks, and has the added benefit of being indoors if wet. The wine can get watered down by the rain in the Courtyard!
7. Look around you. Tomorrow’s stars are here, as well as some of todays.
8. Chat. People are here because they love theatre/music/comedy/culture. So do you, so you already have things in common, and they may suggest a show you hadn’t thought of seeing.
9. Accept that things will clash/be full/be not logistically possible to see. Love seeing what you do. There’s always another year.
10. Have a large handbag – for snacks, brolly (sadly essential for the last few years), pashmina, and all the brochures, magazines and fliers you will undoubtedly pick up.
11. Travel home first class. It’s much more civilized and relaxing than standard class.
12. Finally, enjoy your day. And when you arrive home, think about next year!