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Exciting news! On the Monday 15th December, Deco 5 the coolest hangout in Whitstable will be hosting our Christmas show. It will feature the usual hijinks from Whitstable Fringe regulars alongside some excellent new acts and a few surprises to boot! So dig out those festive jumpers and join us for what promises to be another great night of music, stand-up, poetry and acts of sheer showmanship that defy definition!
On that last note we have a couple of spots free, so if you'd like to take part in the night, do get in touch!
Spread the word!
Hi there faithful Fringers! Ren here again with a little update with what's been going on in the topsy turvey world of The Whitstable Fringe.
Well to start I'd like to say thank you to everyone who came along to our most recent Adventures in Performance evening over in St Mary's hall. It was an intimate gig to say the least so kudos to those who braved the cold, wet and windy weather for the sake of a great evening!
First up we had Bill and Chris performing their stripped down version of Gloria Gaynor's club favourite "I Will Survive", featuring Bill on Ukulele and Chris on Sax. A strange mix indeed! I think they managed to pull it of though!
They were swiftly followed by the super-glam Tuttie Fruities who treated us to a glitter filled burlesque. Great stuff ladies!
After the loverley ladies, Fringe favourite Phil Moss poetically described some insidious tiny spiders intent on taking over followed by a cautionary health and safety ode. Very witty Mr. Moss!
Leading lady from our Bluebeard show Natasha Lanceley continued was next to take the stage delivering an accomplished performance of a monologue from "Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead".
This brought us to the final act of the first half. The amazing Ukulele Eric took the stage to perform his unique take on some modern and classic pop tunes and also introduced the world to his new friend Al Terego. Hope to see him again soon!
We resumed the show after a short interval with Bill and Chris running through their own version of a unique uke and stylophone rendition of "Telstar"! Good job guys.
The Tuttie Fruities then returned to the stage to give us their take on the classic Morcambe and Wise kitchen sketch managing to juggle their eggs professionally without leaving a mess behind. If you know what I mean?
We then met the weird, wonderful and slightly creepy Pierre Pierre whom it is actually rather difficult to describe! Think a mad mime artist crossed with a frustrated singer songwriter and you'd be in the general ball park (but still, not really). I think he left his ball behind...
After this we had more from the wonderful Natasha Lanceley. This time she treated us to her musical talents performing her take on an Ed Sheeran number and then one from her own pen. A real talent this one!
I then picked up my guitar and ran through a few songs of my own. Bill helped me out with a bit of atmospheric uke picking in the background for a coupe of tunes so thanks to him for that. I'm always a bit nervous when trying out new stuff but somehow manage to really enjoy myself at the same time.
So then we came to the final act of the evening! Da Gypskazz Collective. Another new act for the Fringe and they were very well received! They started their set with a cracking rendition of the Pink Panther theme tune and continued their set with Matt Monroe's 'From Russia With Love' and 'Those were the Days' which was lifted to the rafters by our small but magnificent, and loud, audience singing and clapping along with considerable vigour! Sublime guitar work and saxophone solos also featured aplenty and were just what the Doctor ordered to finish the evening off with!
So that was Adventures in Performamce Mk. VI. We've got loads of great acts for you at our next show with compere duties being performed by the brilliant Missy Maybe, music from the up and coming 1800 hours Nd comedy from A Party For Two and the amazing Juliet Meyers! We'll also have a few Fringe Favourites and more acts are still to be announced.
Tickets can be found here:
Until next time!
Well hello there faithful fringe-ites! A belated happy new year to you all and a massive thank you from me personally to everyone who made my 2013 such an amazing year. I don't normally go in for New Years resolutions but if I'm going to resolve to do anything this year, it has to be making The Whitstable Fringe
bigger and better! Not possible I hear you cry! Oh, you are too kind...
More to come on that note in a little while but before I talk about plans for the year to come I wanted to add a bit more about just how grateful we all are at the fringe for everyone who has helped us get our organisation off the ground. We really wouldn't have got anywhere without your help. This goes especially to all the amazing acts who have performed at any of our shows including Lucy Fennell-Knowles, Missy Maybe, David Jones, Philip Moss, El Baldinho, Liam Brennan, Chris Lawrence, The Glowing Embers, Inez Munsch, Andrea Hernandez, The Tuttie Fruities, Ukulele Eric, Melzebra, Silvia Bellucci, Rosalind Palmer, Daniel Harvey, Play it by Ear, The Lindley Players and everyone else who hasn't been mentioned but we are no less grateful for their help!
Our Co-founder Chris Guy also had this to say regarding our Bluebeard cast and crew:
Where to start? So many people to thank for helping launch Bluebeard. Cast, band, burlesquers, technical and front of house came together so brilliantly and everyone pulled together. Thanks go to Nichola Rivers whose direction turned a pile of paper into a work of theatre, I never really get how people do that! In fact it was partly due to her encouragement that the pile of paper got finished at all.
Also a big shout out to Ren whose tireless juggling with tables, chairs, websites, phones and laptops, lights and
mountains of electrical connections meant that we had an environment to run the show. Oh yes, and "Bluebeard" was his idea, I was stuck on traditional pantos and might well have rewritten puss in boots for the millionth time.
Bill was our muse, chipping in with well timed suggestions for everything from the poster to emergency lyric rewrites and snippets of dialogue. He also put in time and muscle on shifting stuff and setting up/breaking down, manning the bar and background planning including the website, posters, flyers, program and loads more.
I was trying to work out if that was a ton of chairs we moved, certainly must have been the equivalent weight to a small car.
And the cast! What a wonderful team you all turned into. Again, under the leadership of Nichola whose direction really defined the show, but also everyone just got on and played their parts... which is why we had a show. Natasha, Paul, Silvia, Andrea, John and Mick (and Nichola again) I'm proud to have worked on
this with you, you were all brilliant.
And our burlesque crew Janet, Leah and Lyndsey with help also from Belinda, all helped to add a touch of
morbid, faded glamour to Bluebeard. Ladies, that was the creepiest burlesque ever! You stamped our show with your images and shaped the publicity and showed the way forward on dealing with the story.
The band too were magnificent: Simon, Cyril, Stephen and Maurice all put their thinking caps on and decoded my hurriedly written score into beautiful music, even when I'd written the wrong numbers at the top!
Props were mostly provided by Nichola and Jon, big thanks, but everyone chipped in and helped with costume,
props, makeup and equipment (including PA from Andrea and microphones from Stephen)
Front of house included Bill, Fran, Ben, Mel and others whose names have just temporarily flown out of the window. Get in touch with me if I've missed you off the list so that I can name-check you again.
The Umbrella team were great too, big thanks to everyone involved from their end. I'm looking forward to new developments in the pipeline at St Mary's hall.
There is so much to say thanks for, and I will go on saying thanks for the next couple of months in case I forget anything else. To everyone who took photos, posted online or helped in any way. To everyone who put out flyers or news feed, everyone who spread word of mouth. It's all help and I'm grateful for it.
And a big shout to Tizi at Deco5 for the rehearsal space.
Hopefully I'll see a load of you at the next fringe night on the 25th of Jan, but stay in touch anyway... Bluebeard is still out there!
afterwards Ren leant over and said to me "what we need is a project, something bigger... maybe over a weekend or three days in the summer, over a load of different venues" and yes I think he meant BIGGER. Come along to the Thursday evening meetings and help shape it.
I'm glad everyone had fun with the show, it was a load of hard work but in the end we created something new and unique.
So that really just leaves me to thank everyone and anyone else who has helped us in anyway!
Festival and shows
Right! So that leads me onto our plans for the coming year. Firstly we'll be continuing our monthly variety fringe shows showcasing fantastic up and coming local talent with a few seasoned performers trying new material out for your enjoyment. Dates for these shows will be on the upcoming events page as soon as I have more
details but the next couple will take place on the 25th January and 22nd February at St Mary's hall. Tickets as ever will be available through
We will also be bringing you a few theme nights this year so keep a eye on the website for info on those. The first will be a Cotton Club swing night in April so get practicing your Lindy Hops!
Our final announcement is the biggest of all! Clear you diaries for the last weekend of June (27th 28th and 29th) because our first Fringe festival will be taking place! We're going to be bringing you all sorts of great stuff including poetry, comedy, music and writing workshops, Fringe preview shows, showcase variety evenings and plenty for the kids too!
So keep those peepers peeled for more news but as ever please do get in touch if you'd like to get involved in any way!
Thanks again and Happy new year!
Wow! What a mad last few days! Please forgive the excessive use of exclamation points but in this case they are warranted methinks! There's been rehearsals aplenty, zombie photo-shoots, technical run-throughs, messing with entrails (fake ones, but who knows what the cast gets up to in their spare time) and generally a whole big bunch of plate spinning (don't get excited, there isn't any actual plate spinning. I was speaking metaphorically). So thanks to everyone involved for being super dedicated, keeping their cool and generally being all-round decent dudes and dudettes!
So this is it; This weekend The Whitstable Fringe is ever so proud to present "Bluebeard - A Musical Bloodbath". This will be the final production from us this year and is a massive achievement for us (fingers crossed, touch wood, etc, etc).
The show has been put together purely by local people and will really be a showcase of what The Whitstable Fringe is all about.
If you are looking for something fun to do with the family this weekend you really should come along!!!
You can get your tickets on the door but if you really don't want to risk missing this amazing and fun show, you can follow the below link to get yours now!
Thanks for reading,
Well I didn't think I'd be updating this again so soon but I thought it would be worth showing you know how our Zombie photo shoot went. It was a cold dark night in Whitstable...
Well I won't get into specifics, but great fun was had by all! If you'd like to see more of these scary (but charming) ladies you'll have to come to our show in December. In the meantime keep your eyes peeled if you're out and about in Whitstable of an evening, you never know what you might run into!
So there you go, that was "Adventures in Performance Mk. V. Not 6 as someone (me) shouted out to Bill very early in the evening.
A huge thanks to all the acts who took part in the show and also to our significantly sized audience who were fantastic! We'd be nowhere without any of you.
The show started with what's turning out to be a fun way to open the show with Bill doing a cover song on uke joined by various members of One Man Sparrow (our house band - this time namely Chris Guy on tenor sax and Cyril Manuel on Bass). A well received version of "Walk on the Wild Side" in tribute to the late great Lou Reed. Well done guys.
Aunt Allie (Lucy Fennell) was our compere for the night's festivities and did a fantastic job keeping the evening on track. Special mention must go to her button amnesty - collecting all those stray buttons that can be found in pockets across the land.
Next up we had Melzebra performing three of her own numbers, followed by Rosy the psychic and her incompetent compliment of spirit guides (and ghost dog). Great stuff!
I took the stage next to perform a couple of my new songs, which seemed to go well and was great fun to be able to take part. After which we had two brilliantly dark cautionary tales from Ros Palmer. Remind me never to poke a goat.
After the break (during which real ales and snacks were available) we had the great El Baldinho and his disappearing "bandanna". I must say I didn't see that one coming!
The Glowing Embers (or Yolo depending on your point of view in the audience) came on next to riotous applause from the crowd. A nice trio of lads with some good covers and nice harmonies. Their mash-up of Radiohead's "Creep" with The Hollies "Air that I Breathe". An interesting but fun combination I must admit!
Next up was our friend the poet Philip Moss with his interesting perspective on the world. He was followed by a bit more fun and games from Aunt Allie - in her swimming costume no less!
The SPLIT PERSONS then took the stage and played four of their dark psychadellic numbers. A bit of a surprise to the audience methinks!
Lastly Bill came back and treated us to an excellent rendition of our theme tune "Alabama Song" - joined by Aunt Allie on the tambourine. Great stuff!
Thanks again to everyone involved!
All that's left for me to do is plug our big Christmas (anti-)pantomime
"Bluebeard - a Musical Bloodbath".
It's based (loosely) on the fairy-tale by Charles Perrault and has been written by local musician and writer Chris Guy and directed by local director Nichola Rivers and staring burlesque zombies - or is that zombie burlesque?
It's going to be a hoot! You can get your tickets from We Got Tickets and there's a link over on our homepage.
Go get 'em tiger.
Well here we are boys, girls, ladies, gents, guys, dolls and everyone in between! Our very own Whitstable Fringe website. My name is Ren and alongside my fringe collective buddies Chris Guy and William Redfern we have been bringing regular fringe cabaret/variety evenings to the gourgeously unique town of Whitstable for nearly a year now.
Bit late coming to the website party you might say? Well many reasons for this but we basically wanted to get it right first time! The aim is to start small and let it grow according to what you (the fringe loving public) want from it. With that in mind if you have any helpful suggestions as to how we can do that they would be gratefully received.
We have big plans for the Whitstable Fringe's future - namely a full on festival - and if you'd like to know more and get involved feel free to get in contact via the usual suspects (twitter, Facebook, email, smoke signals etc.).
Our main focus at the moment is our big Christmas (anti-)panto "Bluebeard". This will be taking place on the 21st & 22nd December 2013 and will be our biggest production to-date!
Before that happens though we have the last of this year's variety evenings! This will be our 6th outing under the Adventure's in Performance banner and will take place on the 23rd November, we look forward to seeing you there!