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Making Work
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Top tips if you’re thinking of taking your show to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

A lot of work goes into taking shows to Edinburgh, but showcasing your work at the Fringe could be a hugely beneficial experience. We spoke to performers at the festival to get their advice about how to go about planning and preparing for the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

Plan your Fringe

There’s lots of think about when taking your show to Edinburgh. Plan as much as you can, as early as you can to take some of the pressure off.

  • Make a list of goals you want to achieve. This can help inform decisions on how to market your show, what venue you choose, how long your show should run for etc.
  • Do your research. Speak to other performers who have put on shows to get their advice, do some research on venues and look at what insurance you may need.
  • Put together a budget. There are lots of costs associated with putting on your show including registration fees, possible venue fees, accommodation and more. The Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society has lots of practical advice about costs and expenses.
  • Decide on a venue. Take a look at all the possible venues and make a shortlist. Check with the venue which dates and times are available and what facilities are available in the space. Negotiate a time slot and arrange a signed contract.
  • Register your show. Pick an image and write a description for your show’s listing then register via the online registration system. There’s an early-bird discount for those who sign up before 11 March.
  • Find somewhere to stay. Accommodation in Edinburgh in August can be expensive so start looking for somewhere to stay as soon as you can. Keep costs down by clubbing together with other performers to find a flatshare or if you’re lucky enough to know someone in the city then see if you can couch-surf.

Marketing your show

The Fringe is hugely competitive so it’s important that you put some thought into how you can stand out from the crowd.

  • Communication preparation. Send emails to reviewers and industry people to let them know where and when they can see your show.
  • Plan your promotion materials. Think about how you’re going to advertise your show. Make posters, press releases, promo videos, social media posts and flyers in advance.
  • Flyering. There’s a great camaraderie between people flyering on the streets but there’s a lot of competition. Get the attention of passers-by with fun phrases, eye contact and by being energetic.
  • Learn how to sell your show. Think of some snappy one-liners to draw people in.
  • Be enthusiastic. Even if it’s not going 100% to plan.

Look after yourself

The Fringe is a fun and wonderful opportunity to connect with others in the arts industry as well as learning from other shows. But it can also be exhausting so be sure to look after yourself, and your fellow performers.

  • Communicate with others. Share your struggles with fellow performers who may well be having similar experiences.
  • Take a rest. You’ll get tired so take your time and relax when you can.
  • Have a good time… but make sure you eat and sleep well.

Read more about making your own work or find lots of advice about taking a show to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

Image by Madeleine Kohler via Unsplash