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Losing yourself in the Fringe launch
I’m writing this at my desk while eating cold curry, surrounded by coffee cups and press cuttings. I’ve spent the last five days reeling between launches, the office and the Fringe performers centre and I can’t remember the last time I had a full night’s sleep or ate something on an actual kitchen table, off a plate, with all the correct items of cutlery.
I should have been expecting it. While this is my first year as Fringe press officer, I have lived in Brighton and Hove a long time and am aware of the tidal wave of events that breaks over the city every May.
Nevertheless, the Fringe kick-off still took me by surprise. It started harmlessly enough on Thursday with some civilised champagne and sushi at the Madonna Nudes exhibition launch, followed by the Spiegeltent launch (excellent goody-bags – nipple tassles and cake, the perfect burlesque starter kit).
On Friday we started off at the Show Below launch in the Brighton Media centre, an exhibition with some stunning work by artists like Lee Baker and Anna Kyriacou. I left feeling extremely cultured, a sensation that was not damaged by the consumption of a superb lamb kebab on the way to the Fletch@St Andrews launch.
It was after about 11 o’clock on Friday that I began to lose all sense of time. I know I went to the Aviator Club at the Spiegeltent (Anna the Pocket Rocket’s hula-hoop skills were a particular highlight) and spent some time in the Fringe Performers Centre chatting to Lynn Ruth Miller aka Queenie the Senile Stripper (performing at The Quadrant all this week), who is both lovely and hilarious. I know I was at the Spiegeltent again for Guilty Pleasures, marvelling at the be-spangled behinds of the Dancing Bears dance troupe.
But I don’t really know when it all happened, or how I managed to fit in proofing a supplement, organising ticket requests, laminating press passes (the laminating machine is a thing of fear and wonder – you turn it on and it smells like all the fires of hell, then you feed some plastic into it and it comes out in a neat little pocket) and all the other things I’m supposed to be doing besides going to gigs. I decided to give the EDO riot a miss on Monday, jolly though it looked, and spent much of the day in my pyjamas reading the Bettaware catalogue, fortifying myself for the next 3 weeks. Hopefully I’ll be able to give some backstage insight into how the whole Fringe thing works – watch this space….