Forest Fringe UK Microfestival Tour, 2010


In 2010 we took our Microfestival project on the road for the first time, working with four organisations in four different parts of the country, in each case presenting a weekend of intimate encounters, interactive experiences and experimental performances. The aim was to try and find a way to take the spirit and energy of what we do in Edinburgh, where the artists are at the heart of everything, and take it around the country, and undoubtedly for better and occasionally for worse, we were successful in bringing some of the chaos and excitement and energy of Forest Fringe’s early days in Edinburgh to four very different spaces, from Battersea Arts Centre’s labyrinthine town hall, to the subterranean caverns of the Arches and the spaces in and around Bristol Old Vic’s grand auditorium.

In London you could venture to the basement and find Shunt's Mischa Twitchin, with a piece based on the French playwright and director Antonin Artaud; then, head to the attic and lie on a bed listening to experience a one-on-one encounter with the sound artist Melanie Wilson. Elsewhere we had work by Search Party, Tania El Khoury, Stoke Newington International Airport and Mapping4D amongst others.

In Glasgow Abigail Conway occupied the whole of one cavernous archway with her installation On The Tip Of Your Tongue, and David Overend another with a wild experiment in mass audience participation. Meanwhile tucked away downstairs in the rehearsal rooms were an early version of Deborah Pearson’s show Like You Were Before a sinister video installation by conceptual artist Charlotte Jarvis.

In Swansea we worked with a number of Welsh artists for the first time include video artist Jorge Lizalde, writer Bethan Marlowe and Shellshock Theatre, the last of which’s work we enjoyed so much we invited them to be part of both the Forest Fringe Microfestival at Bristol Old Vic, and our Edinburgh Festival programme later that summer.

In Bristol we flipped the conventional set-up of the theatre, turning the paint shop into a hub, in which we presented video work by Nic Green alongside a one-to-one performance by Tinned Fingers, music from Little Bulb Theatre and a new short experimental performance by Action Hero that was so loud the building manager attempted to have it shut down. Elsewhere Abigail Conway and Melanie Wilson took over the main auditorium for their hauntingly intimate multi-media piece every minute, always, Invisible Flock created a hidden treasure hunt across the building and Stoke Newington International Airport presented a manic version of Live Art Speed Dating filling the studio and spilling out into other areas of the building.

In each place we visited these pieces were accompanied by the Forest Fringe Travelling Sounds Library and a poster installation of imaginary events created by Tim Etchells especially for the tour.


Associated Artists


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