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Sydney Fringe Festival announces 2018 Program

Sydney Fringe Festival, New South Wales’ largest independent arts festival, today announced its most ambitious program yet including a take-over of the Oxford Street precinct and areas of greater Sydney. Presented from 1 until 30 September, Fringe highlights the city’s vibrant culture, with a diverse program spanning theatre, music, comedy, visual art, film, musical theatre, dance, circus, literature and poetry. More than 400 shows will be offered including 120 world premieres, 142 Australian premieres and a further 170 Sydney premieres.

The 2018 program – including performances, exhibitions, large-scale events, a festival club and more – will be presented across six festival hubs around the city this September taking over streets, shop fronts and venues, inviting audiences to engage with ‘what’s new’.

Sydney Fringe CEO and Festival Director Kerri Glasscock believes the 2018 program plays a key role in revitalising the night-time economy of Sydney and firmly places Sydney Fringe on the international Fringe Festival map: We are thrilled for Sydney Fringe to infiltrate the Oxford Street Precinct and revitalise Sydney’s creative sector as it takes over more than 60 venues across the city. The 2018 program is testament to Sydney Fringe’s place within the international Fringe Festival family and we are excited to welcome award-winning artists from around the globe to Sydney. With programs spreading across 21 postcodes and celebrating local talent the festival will ignite Sydney with a creative buzz like never before.”

Fringe launches on 1 September with FRINGE IGNITE, the Festival’s official opening party curated by award-winning musician and Fringe Ambassador Thelma Plum. FRINGE IGNITE will be held in 13 venues across the Festival’s 2018 Oxford Street precinct including the National Art School, UNSW Art & Design, Oxford Art Factory and Eternity Playhouse. Throughout September over 78 events will take place in the Oxford St Hub precinct, including a pop-up cabaret season at The Beresford, a curated theatre and performance season at the East Sydney Community and Arts Centre and more.

For the first time, Sydney Fringe will present the Archie Rose Touring Hub with a program of award-winning performances touring from Fringe festivals around the world at the Old 505 Theatre, NewtownThe 2018 Touring Hub will feature seven touring theatre works, hand-picked by the Festival Director, including U.K. based Sh!t Theatre’s sell-out Edinburgh Festival Fringe show DollyWould and the award-winning show Maggot by New Zealand trio Angela Foughy, Elle Wootton and Freya Finch.

In 2018 the Sydney Fringe expands its footprint by moving into Western Sydney with the inaugural Liverpool Hub

and an independent theatre program at Q Theatre at The Joan Sutherland Performing Arts Centre in Penrith. Curated by Nisrine Amine, Co-Founder and Creative Director of Parramatta Actors Centre, the Liverpool Hub will take over the old Northumberland Arcade and nearby Macquarie Bistro with a free program of pop-up performance spaces, music, galleries and creative businesses featuring Western Sydney artists and an outdoor animation laneway cinema.

The inaugural Legs Hub,  in partnership with legendary physical theatre company Legs on The Wall at the Red Box in Lillyfield, will present a program of circus and physical theatre curated by the company’s Artistic Director and 2018 Fringe Ambassador Joshua Thomson with pop-up bar, workshops and more. Highlights include The Women of Chasing Smoke by Casus Circus, Australia’s only Indigenous contemporary circus ensemble, and Letters To An Unborn Child by Brown Paper Circus, from Sydney’s Trapeze School.

Other highlights include the Fringe Club which will activate all four floors of the Kings Cross Hotel with a program including comedy, theatre, music, and performances from acclaimed physical performer and 2018 Fringe Ambassador, Andy Dexterity. The Emerging Artist Hub returns with five shows a night and spreading over three venues within the Erskineville Town Hall and across the road to the church hall, plus a pop-up bar; and the Dance Hub at the PACT Theatre in Erskinville will feature acts such as Too, Connect, Her Masculinity and Geometry.

The Fringe Kids program will be presented over the first week of the school holidays and last week of the Festival from 23-30 September. Program highlights include ‘Fringe World Award Winner’, Lucy Peach’s How to Period Like A Unicorn and Who plot picnic time, a mini music festival featuring music from The Vegetable Plot, Angie Who and Benny Time; craft activities and more.

Pop-ups and events not to be missed include the Festival Village‘s street event EATS – BEATS – STREET that will take over Kensington Street, Chippendale with street artists creating work on the day, food stalls, a festival bar, art auction, live music and performance. Sydney Fringe will present, in collaboration with Parramatta City Council, a series of pop-up live music events every Friday for the month of September and, together with Broadway Sydney, is hosting a roller-skating rink on the center’s rooftop that includes an in-store pop-up of Frida Las Vegas and Nicol & Ford wares.

The program concludes with events such as The Last Supper at the Festival Village on 30 September featuring immersive art, performances, food, drinks and more; Mantra Moves Master Class: Lose Your Mind with musician Nadav Khan and renowned Yogini Eileen Hall where yoga meets music; and finally the Heaps Gay party in the Oxford St Hub precinct.

“The Sydney Fringe Festival highlights the creative heart of our city offering an annual snapshot of how Sydney feels, where we are and where we are heading. 2017 was our most successful festival to date, and 2018 is shaping up to be bolder, braver and more groundbreaking than ever before!” added Kerri Glasscock.

The full program for the 2018 Sydney Fringe Festival will be announced 1 August 2018. Please visit https://www.sydneyfringe.com/ for further details and updates.

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