Yes I know it’s been a week, but what a week it’s been. Tough, grinding, fun, long, tiring, sweating and smelling, lifting and shifting, building, scaffing, painting, sticking and eating (of course you have to eat during all this!) are just a handful of some of the verbs and adjectives that could describe the last days.
The mass of staff arrived yesterday to lift spirits and blaze through what still had to be worked on. There is still a vast amount to be done but what has been achieved is both amazing and overwhelming at the same time. Things have certainly fallen into place nicely and now it’s time to move onto the next stage of the Edinburgh festival – the company arrivals.
From tomorrow, the long and laborious, but extremely essential work takes place with setting up the productions in each of the venues. These next few days are a crucial and pivotal point during the festival duration and for many people are the potential make and break of their time here. There will be tears and tantrums all over the shop with ego clashes a-plenty but then what would the arts festival be without them?
This is, of course, a very false picture that I’m painting of how the work will go because, in fact, it will be more first class teamwork to put the finishing touches to these shows and make them all look, sound and feel amazing. I will very much be involved in this process and will be knee deep in much deliberation of sorting the shows out and this is where the next phase of my quest will begin. I’ll be finding out why exactly the companies invest their long and hard earned cash to come to the place where the average audience attendance is just three.
The Edinburgh Festival Fringe, the official organisers for the fringe festival, give their opinion on why performers should come to the festival:-
You will not only face competition for an audience from around 1,800 different Fringe shows but also from the Edinburgh International, Film, Book and Jazz Festivals, plus the Edinburgh Military Tattoo. So although many people travel to what is generically known as the ‘Edinburgh Festival’ there are many things to distract them from buying a ticket for your show. In addition, the costs of hiring a venue, travel, accommodation, publicity material, etc mount up quickly.
However, financial gain isn’t the number one reason to come to Edinburgh. Most performers come to the Fringe as an asset for their future careers. The Fringe is well-known for springboarding people’s careers, providing numerous opportunities for networking, and ‘fast-track’ learning some tricks of the trade from other performers from all across the globe.
As obvious as this may seem, it is the latter paragraph that is so blindingly true and something that runs across the fringe platform no matter where you are in the world. This is what makes the arts so good because it is consistently like this. However, this doesn’t satisfy my appetite enough and so I want to see the rabbit hole go further and receive a much wider perspective on why Edinburgh exists as it does today.