Brighton Fringe will return to the city on Friday with circus silliness, insightful comedy, theatre, all-female troupes, a flying bubble show and much more.

Taking place from May 3 to June 2 this year’s programme is jam packed with more than 750 events taking place in over 120 venues including theatres, pubs and some unusual spaces across the city.

Every year, Brighton Fringe sees performers from around the world, including homegrown talent from Sussex, arriving in the city, bringing events as diverse as improvised musicals, Greek mythology-themed circus, life-drawing sessions with drag queens as models and a cardboard play city constructed by children.

New venue Fool’s Paradise will take over the gardens of St Peter’s Church at The Level throughout May and into June. 

The Argus: Fool's Paradise in BrightonFool's Paradise in Brighton (Image: The Argus)

The site will be free to enter, with performances, street food stalls and activities for children. Fool’s Paradise will host two theatre venues, one with 350 seats and one with 170, showcasing music, theatre, circus and cabaret.

This year the Fringe will also bring music, arts and performances to new locations in Sussex, outside its city base.

These include Lewes Curious, a new programme of events in venues around the town, taking place across the opening weekend of Brighton Fringe, from May 3 to 5.

Featuring a host of local artists and performers, Lewes Curious will present female comedians in Women Being Funny, a night of punchy, bold verse from poets in Outspoken Word, and a feast of Latin, folk, acoustic, acapella and more in Music Bites.

Flying bubble show

The Argus: The Flying Bubble Show The Flying Bubble Show (Image: The Flying Bubble Show)

A new concept combining bubble creation with aerial acrobatics makes its world premiere at this year’s Brighton Fringe.

The Flying Bubble Show at the Fool’s Paradise venue at the festival from Saturday, May 4, is a pioneering spectacle crafted by the world’s leading bubble artist Maxwell and skilled aerial artist Rufus M’ali Corvino.

“The performance will merge the ethereal art of bubbleology with the breathtaking wonder of aerial acrobatics,” said Maxwell.

Renowned for his decade-long expertise in bubble artistry, Maxwell dreamed of flight and travelled to India's Bliss Circus to learn aerial arts. There, he met Rufus and together they envisioned a unique fusion of their crafts.

"The Flying Bubble Show is an innovative culmination of our skills,” he said. “It offers a high-impact visual feast that blends humour, beauty and the surreal into one unforgettable experience.

“This unique, first-of-its-kind production sees imagination take flight amidst a dance of air and iridescent bubbles.”

The Flying Bubble Show blends aerial acrobatics with stunning bubble artistry in seven hour-long performances, during the Brighton Fringe Festival. It bubbles up at 1pm on May 4, 5, 6, 11, 12, 18, 19.

Circus silliness

The Argus: Absurd CircusAbsurd Circus (Image: Absurd Circus)

Following their successful debut at the Australian Adelaide Fringe Festival earlier this year, the “ragtag” acrobat troupe Absurd Circus will showcase their latest production, Absurd Tea Circus, in The Vault at Fool’s Paradise during the Brighton Fringe Festival from May 25 to June 2.

“From aerial sandwich making competitions to juggling fashion extravaganzas, the show combines incredible acrobatics, genuine emotion and expert silliness,” says Rindi, who stars in the spectacular.

Absurd Circus promises to whisk Brighton audiences away on an unforgettable and absurd adventure at teatime, 6.30pm, each day.

Doctor turned comedian

The Argus: Stefania LicariStefania Licari (Image: Simon Webbe)

Stand-up comedian Stefania Licari will bring her new show, Trust Me, I’m A Comedian, to the Fringe on May 15-17 and 25. Audiences can expect an evening of inspirational comedy and autobiographical material centred around Stefania’s challenging 160-mile non-stop ultra-marathon across the Sahara.

It not only charts her running journey, but that as a female comic and the changing attitudes of British audiences.

Speaking about the latest show, the Italian comic and intensive care doctor said: "The ultra-marathon is a metaphor for the various stages in my life. The moral of the story is not to give up, as you never know how close you are to the finish line.

“The message is even more important for women and I hope it provides the inspiration to move away from conventions and expectations.”

The one-hour show will see the comedian contemplate the endurance needed to be a woman in 2024 facing issues such as immigration, religion and life in the UK.

“Ultimately, things haven't changed a lot for women,” she said.

“I ran away from the script of what was supposed to be my life as a ‘conventional’ woman.

 “I’ve overcome many challenges but it’s a fantastic time to be a female comedian and a migrant. The UK audiences are smart, contemporary and receptive to hearing new voices. The greatest privilege is to have a voice and that audiences will listen to your stories, this matters to me a lot, especially as a woman and a migrant.”

Stefania Licari performs at Laughing Horse at the Caroline of Brunswick in Hove on May 15 to 17 and Laughing Horse at The Walrus in Brighton on May 25.

Sassy cabaret

The Argus: Lash OutLash Out (Image: Lash Out)

Lash Out, an all-Australian, all-female cast of acclaimed cabaret artistes, opens at the Brighton Fringe Festival’s main base Fool’s Paradise on Friday, May 3, for a month-long run of performances.

The production promises “an electrifying night of entertainment”, according to the evening’s promoters Head First Acrobats.

The evening is hosted by Memphis Mae, an Australian Burlesque Hall of Famer.

Step inside the Dragon Wagon

The Argus: Jellyfish Theatre will bring the Dragon Wagon to BrightonJellyfish Theatre will bring the Dragon Wagon to Brighton (Image: Brighton Fringe)

Jellyfish Theatre will roll up with their new outdoor show The Dragon Wagon.

People can head to Circus Street, Brighton, on May 29 and Farm Green Park, Bevendean on June 2, to meet the dragon whisperer and fantastical dragons who live there.

The playful, inventive family show about friendship, food and dragons is packed with puppetry, music and laughter. No booking is required and people are advised to bring a blanket to sit on.

Best suited for ages four to eight.

Music from a bus

French musicians For The Hackers will perform for the first time in Brighton on May 25 and 26 at Fool’s Paradise. Hailing from Dieppe, the indie-rockers will perform from on top of their vintage solar-powered bus. Sets promise a blend of pop, rock and electro with French lyrics.

A personal account of ADHD

The Argus: Philippa DawsonPhilippa Dawson (Image: Brighton Fringe)

Philippa Dawson will bring her account of her experience with ADHD and queerness in her new show Character Flaw.

A plethora of eye-opening topics and anecdotes will be covered in a short space of time during performances at The Actors, Brighton, from May 9 to May 12.

Pip uses voiceovers, sketch and music to navigate the challenges and celebrate the joys of life with ADHD. She explores her coming out journey, how medication has affected her identity and asks whether we can all learn to be more understanding.

Philippa is winner of the Brighton Fringe Award for Excellence 2023 and was shortlisted for the ADHD Comedy Award 2023.

The Argus: Fringe City, Brighton Fringe 2022 Fringe City, Brighton Fringe 2022 (Image: Danny Fitzpatrick)

Visit Brighton Fringe’s website,, to find out more about all this year’s events and venues.

Managing director Amy Keogh said: “We are so excited about this year’s Fringe. It’s a special chance to see so many funny, unique and spectacular shows which are coming to the city for just a short time. Tickets are selling fast – some of our events are already selling out, including Character Flaw, the winner of the Brighton Fringe Award for excellence at last year’s Edinburgh Fringe. There are also some brand new venues which we’re looking forward to welcoming for 2024.”