The Melbourne Fringe Festival is on now, with hundreds of shows available now to enjoy in your home and on the streets. Navigating the program to find the perfect show can be a challenge, so as the Festival enters its second week, enjoy the below highlights of the program.
The amazing Take Over! 2020, in partnership with Arts Centre Melbourne, is underway with a ground-breaking program of work spanning dance, theatre, spoken word, music, live art and installation. Enter the life of two Maggies in I Am Maggie, a 30-minute dance ﬁlm where childhood in China and adulthood in Australia are explored. Created by Jonathan Homsey and performed by Maggie “Madfox” Chen and Maggie “Maggz” Zhu, this improvised work uses street, contemporary and Chinese cultural dance vocabularies and runs 13-18 November. Drishti (16-22 November) sees classical Indian dancers Govind Pillai and Raina Peterson explore their experiences of disembodiment and surveillance under lockdown, and their attempts at reconnection. Another highlight is the formidable Moira Finucane in I Miss You Antarctica (26 November), inspired by Finucane’s recent trip to Antarctica to witness the majesty of what we have and what we can lose. This austere and apocalyptic fever dream stitches live museum exhibition with theatre and a mass-mortality event. Other exciting Take Over! 2020 events include, Numummaa fi Wantoota Numummaa Qancarsan – Humanness and What Took It (18-27 November), The History of the Damnable Life and Deserved Death of Doctor John Faustus LIVE, (21 November and podcast version 24-27 November), and Smaller (23-28 November).
Other Fringe shows not to be missed include The SnortCAST Variety Show, celebrating diverse artists in comedy, clowning and cabaret. Featuring Shiralee Hood, Annie Louey, Samuel Gebreselassie, The Two Donnies, Alice Tovey and Kwamena Brace, and hosted by Diana Nguyen. 19-24 November
Take a walk around inner city Melbourne to discover The Feminist Poster Project, featuring artist Katie Sfetkidis’ hand drawn posters celebrating contemporary intersectional feminism and social justice movements. In the era of #metoo and #blacklivesmatter, The Feminist Poster Project captures the spirit of change and social justice that has inspired the contemporary imagination. 16-29 November
#txtshow (on the internet) is an immersive multiscreen performance featuring a mysterious character called txt (pronounced “text”) who recites a script written anonymously in real-time by a live internet audience. Happening on Zoom, audience members must keep their camera and microphone on the entire show. 12-29 November
For Club Fringe at Home: Drag Queen Bingo join fabulous drag duo Miss Ellaneous and Marzi Panne for a hilarious evening of bingo ball play featuring special guests, prizes for each round, plus a grand prize for Best Bingo Outfit. 17 November.
Club fun continues with Club Fringe at Home: 3 Minutes to Save the World, featuring some of Melbourne’s best performance makers delivering bite-sized acts that are sure to save the day – or at least distract from reality. Art is the hero we all need right now, and these snippets are guaranteed to be short, sweet and weird as hell. 19 November
DC Style Fylez: House of Fashion will answer any fashion dilemma. Audiences can look through the window to the inner workings of a home fashion studio and watch as DC Style Fylez uses DIY skills to transform recycled clothes and fabric into sensational style solutions. This will also be streaming live on DC TV. 13-29 November
Houseparty is the all-out street dance party at home. Melbourne’s top street dance artists go toe to toe in an all-styles tournament, judged by French street dance icons including Princess Madoki. 21 November
Homesick is a charming and bittersweet reverie of a birthday in the year that is 2020. This exciting new work explores how this year has reshaped how we think about ourselves and how we think about others. It examines behaviour when starved of human interaction and asks, “Can cheese fill the void of loneliness and transport us to a place that feels like home?” 19-28 November
Part of Deadly Fringe, Us explores the relationship First Nations women and non-binary people have with their bodies, in light of experiencing misogyny, racism, fat phobia, and slut shaming. Us sees a reflection of many First Nations women utilise platforms as a means of self-expression in a powerful way, through a series of self-portraits of these women in all of their beauty, autonomy and sovereignty. 12-29 November
Yana Alana is back from retirement. Didn’t know she was retired? Neither did she, she thought she was just tired. Yana is getting out of bed and bringing The Worst Of Yana Alana for the Melbourne Fringe 2020. Join Yana, her pianist Louise Goh and her drummer Bec Matthews for an evening of queer empowerment as they bring you her worst original songs and poetry. 16-22 November
Yana Alana’s alter ego Sarah Ward, along with Bec Matthews (Yana Alana, Queen Kong and the HOMOsapiens, Circus Oz) lead Over 60 Under 10, (14-22 November) a unique song writing project amplifying the voices of younger and older members of our community. This project offers a one-on-one song writing workshop to individuals Over 60 and under 10. Bec and Sarah provide a safe, and open creative process that encourages a natural flow of ideas and a playful interaction, culminating in a performance on 27 November.
Got a problem that needs a creative solution? Dial an Artist on 1300 FRINGE (1300 374 643). Socks need mending? Want to overthrow the patriarchy? Thinking about calling your ex, or just not sure when to plant your tomatoes? Trust the wisdom of an artist – there’s no problem big or small they can’t (attempt to) solve. 12-29 November.
To view the full list of events on sale now, head to melbournefringe.com.au.
Melbourne Fringe empowers anyone to realise their right to creative expression through the Melbourne Fringe Festival, year-round venue Fringe Common Rooms and a range of sector leadership programs. For 2.5 weeks each year, the Melbourne Fringe Festival allows audiences to discover the unexpected with art being made and created across the city in theatres, galleries, venues, public spaces, homes, studios and everywhere in between. Its open access framework means that anyone can register to be part of the Festival, bringing voices from the margins and amplifying them across the city.
Melbourne Fringe believes that access to arts and creativity are fundamental rights, and encourages artistic participation through large scale public artworks, experimental children’s art, design exhibition Fringe Furniture, Fringe Common Rooms at Trades Hall and late-night Club Fringe programming. Melbourne Fringe keeps access and inclusion at its heart, actively working to remove barriers to participation and develop artists skills through First Nations commissioning program Deadly Fringe, Deaf and Disability arts programs, mentorships, workshops, residencies, forums, awards and touring support.