Edinburgh Fringe

Adele Cliff: Top tips to make the most of the fringe

Adele Cliff

The Edinburgh Fringe is here and I'm excited to perform my new show, and to see all the shows people have been cooking up for the last 3 years.

If you're currently planning your trip, let me help: 2022 will be the 8th time I've been up to the fringe to perform and I feel like I've gained a little bit of wisdom on how to get the most out of the festival over the years. Here's my tips on making the most of your first festival:

Be prepared

Bring it all: water bottle, portable charger, hand sanitiser, mask, emergency rations. The weather can be all over the place within the same day so have both a raincoat and some suncream; you'll use them both, sometimes within the same hour. A friend of mine who was a fringe veteran used to treat himself to a new pair of socks for each day of the festival - what a treat.

Tip within a tip: Some raincoats aren't actually waterproof and you'll take them off to reveal an interesting pattern of wet patches on your outfit. Why not stress test yours before you arrive by taking a shower in it?

Adele Cliff

Assume you'll get lost a bit

Edinburgh is hilly and quite confusing, imagine an escape room designed a city. Give yourself enough time to walk between venues and don't be surprised if you end up three stories above where you thought you were on a map. If you're worried about this, bring abseiling equipment!

Tip within a tip: Don't be afraid to ask for directions, but do remember that the confidence with which people give you them might be based on a good drama degree and not actual navigational knowledge.

Feast

The food is another first class performer you should make time for. There's a brilliant range of cuisines that Edinburgh has totally nailed. A baked potato tastes even better when it's raining (the weather not the potato, raining potatoes are best avoided).

See some of Edinburgh

The city is really beautiful under the many posters plastered everywhere. Go up Arthur's seat, pop into the castle or have a break in Princes Street Gardens.

Tip within a tip: There are several ways up Arthur's Seat and some of them will leave you stuck halfway up unless you're a climbing enthusiast.

Mix it up

Everyone has favourites but try to see a range of shows, at a range of venues, from a range of voices and styles and mix in newbies with TV names; it's a big festival don't let your show choices make it seem smaller.

Adele Cliff

Schedule in some spontaneity

Don't book everything before you arrive, have some gaps, let yourself be flyered and chat to the people flyering (they will probably have seen the show or it might be their show); or just wander into something on the door there's loads of great shows that allow you to pay what you want on the way out. What have you got to lose?

Tip within a tip: Throw away flyers you don't want in a bin, seeing your face staring up from a gutter can be bad for the fragile ego of a comedian.

Don't try and see everything in a single day

I know it seems like a counterintuitive thing for a comedian who's performing to say, but don't overstuff your schedule. You can have a better time and be a better audience member if you're not too tired to focus and laugh.

Tip within a tip: For the shows you are scheduling in advance, try Katie Pritchard (for hilarious musical brilliance), Alasdair Beckett-King (for unique multimedia brilliance), Sikisa (for authentic and engaging brilliance), Glenn Moore (for more jokes than you should be able to fit in an hour), Jordan Gray (for a personality that would make the O2 feel small) and me (for a show about houmous, spoilers and boobs). And free entry spontaneous choices: Heidi Regan (on AI and IVF), Rachel Creeger (on bees and kindness) and Raul Kohli (on recent news and politics).


Adele Cliff: In the Dark is at Just The Tonic at The Tron at 3:40pm from 4 to 28 August (not 15). EdFringe.com

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