Edinburgh Fringe 2015: Editors’ Picks

Muse section Editors give you their best picks for this year’s Fringe

Image: Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2015

Image: Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2015

Shakespeare in the Garden: Brave Macbeth
Chris Owen, Music Editor

Because who hasn’t taken in the medieval gore and inexorable misery of Shakespeare’s Scottish Play and thought ‘this is crying out for a few pairs of jazz hands’? Brave Macbeth The Musical had a 5 star run in the 2013 Ed Fringe, and is returning to The Famous Spiegeltent armed with the same bounty of kilts, crown-swapping comedy and lyrical bathos. The three singing witches, who act as the chorus, are a highlight of this brilliantly silly play – prepare to hover through the fog and filthy air to a damn catchy 2/4 overture.


The Cambridge Footlights International Tour Show 2015:  Love Handles
Jaz Hayward, Features Editor

No trip to the Fringe is quite complete without checking out Cambridge’s renowned sketch troupe, Footlights. The amateur dramatics club, which has given us some of the biggest names in comedy, including Richard Ayoade, Stephen Fry, David Mitchell and John Cleese returns again this year to the festival as part of its international tour of its latest comedy show, Love Handles. Though the premise remains under wraps, we can expect great things from the group that year after year performs to sold-out theatres, and continues to impress both audiences and critics alike. Expect comedy at it rawest and finest from the Cantabrigians: making us cry with laughter since 1883.


Phyllida Barlow
Joel Down, Deputy Arts Editor

Contemporary art is meant to turn the art world upside down, with new innovations; shocking structures and a host of way-too-revealing exhibits the expected standard. So it’s no surprise that Tate-favourite, Phyllida Barlow has been commissioned to turn the Fruitmarket gallery on its head for Edinburgh Fringe. Having developed a style that simply mocks the concept of gallery space and the art that is meant to fill it, the Geordie artist is exactly the right sort of daring pioneer needed to attempt this feat. Her work generally looks like someone has grabbed the contents of a builder’s skip and stuck nails in it at the parts which seem right, creating colossal tangible structure out of basic material such as cardboard or balsa wood. A carpenter’s conundrum. How this will translate into flipping the dimensions of a gallery remains to be seen, but it’s this kind of provocative experiment – designed to disorient the viewer – that makes Edinburgh Fringe such a head-turning event.


Carol Ann Duffy and John Sampson
Lily Papworth, Arts Editor

Carol Ann Duffy, at the Fringe, reading poetry – need I say more? This incredible poet laureate will be reading from a number of her collections, such as The World’s Wife and The Bees. She will also be accompanied by the wonderful John Sampson, who shall be using a variety of instruments – old and new – to provide a medley of musical classics.

Considering the power of Duffy’s words, just imagine what it would be like to hear the great woman speak them herself. The English Literature student within me cannot recommend this more, you would be silly to miss it.


The 153rd Edinburgh International Exhibition of Photography
Jack Richardson, Deputy Features Editor

The 153rd Edinburgh International Exhibition of Photography will once again make an appearance at the Edinburgh Festival, and provide some time for contemplation and observation in amongst the bustle, and chuckling that grips the city at this time of year. One of the few print-only exhibitions left in the industry, competition for a spot amongst the roughly 200 photographs is fierce, and features artists from all over the world, professional and amateur. Not only is this a chance to see work from photographers upcoming and established, but also to appreciate photography in a medium far more tangible than most digital work today.

One comment

  1. 14 Aug ’15 at 4:23 pm

    Kate McGregor

    We would loved to have heard Carol Ann Duffy reading her poetry. We are a group of five, aged 70 plus. Ms Duffy’s words were lost to us, her voice did not carry especially when we were looking at her back, or side. Why the stage could not have been placed at the top of the studio with everyone looking forward we just didn’t understand. We had a 7 hr round trip for this. Very very disappointing. John Sampson was wonderful.