America’s largest circus makes its European premiere at Underbelly’s Circus Hub this Fringe

  • Largest American circus in the world makes European debut at Edinburgh Festival Fringe
  • UniverSoul captures the energy of urban communities through an unparalleled interactive mix of hip hop, theatrics and outstanding circus arts
  • Colossal cast includes the finest and freshest circus artists from across the world including the US, Africa and Cuba

“The Coolest Show on Earth” Newsweek Magazine

“Show Stopping Spectacle” People Magazine

“Cirque du Soul” The Atlanta Journal Constitution

Having electrified US audiences for 25 years, America’s largest circus makes it’s European premiere at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. UniverSoul: Hip-Hop Under the Big Top, combines edge-of-your-seat performances, stunning spectacle, hilarious audience participation and a soundtrack that will blow the roof off the big top tent!

UniverSoul Circus will open at The Underbelly Circus Hub this August boasting some of the most phenomenal acts ever to grace center ring! Leading the charge will be Ringmaster Lucky Malatsi of South Africa, a multitalented entertainer who brings his unbridled energy to every performance. Joining Lucky will be US internet hip hop dance sensation Fresh the Clowns, fiery limbo spectacular from Trinidad and Tobago Caribbean Dynasty and The Willie Family, a six member troupe from Colombia to astound audiences with a never-before seen hire-wire act, to name but a few from a huge cast from the world’s finest circus acts.

UniverSoul Circus is more than a circus… it’s a one of a kind, unparalleled interactive mix of music, theatrics, and circus arts that takes you on a journey of unlimited possibilities. Unmatched on the world stage, UniverSoul Circus will push you into a world of urban prisms with its non-stop, high-octane Big Top production and unique style of entertainment for all the family.

The show was created by top US concert promoter Cedric Walker, who 25 years ago had a dream to produce a live entertainment family show that celebrated urban African American communities. Walker sought to recreate the wild energy he witnessed when working with the likes of The Commodors, Jackson Five and Run DMC in a new show which authentically captured urban culture, broke down the traditional barriers between audiences and performers and was suitable for families to enjoy together. Fast-forward 25 years and Walker’s vision, UniverSoul Circus, has entertained over 20 million people and is now firmly established as beloved and highly anticipated tradition in cities across the United States, featuring performers from across the world. Cedric Walker was recently inducted into the Circus Ring of Fame and continues to innovate and push the boundaries of circus performance, traveling the world to search out the freshest new talent to join the UniverSoul family.

UniverSoul Circus: Hip Hop under the Big Top is circus for a new generation and will set the stage a blaze this August at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe!


Underbelly and UniverSoul Circus present

Universoul Circus: Hip Hop Under the Big Top

Venue: The Lafayette, The Underbelly Circus Hub, Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2018

Dates: Sat 4th August – Sat 25th August, 5pm


Aug 4, 5, 6, 7, 10, 11, 12, 7, 18, 19, 24, 25 £22.30 (£21.30)

Aug 8, 9, 13, 14, 15, 16, 20, 21, 22, 23


First review date: 7th August

Running time: 60 mins

Tickets available at



More acts will be announced in due course.

Ringmaster, Lucky Malatsi

South Africa

The UniverSoul Circus Ringmaster Lucky Malatsi, was born in Pretoria and raised in Johannesburg, South Africa. Lucky has been performing in front of an audience since the age of four when he was trained by his Uncle Prince, an accomplished performer and acrobat. At the tender age of six, Lucky made his first international trip to perform as an acrobat for festivals in Germany. In 1999, while performing in South Africa, Lucky caught the attention of UniverSoul Circus Founder and President Cedric Walker who regularly travels the world looking for new talent. By 2000, at the age of 10, he was performing a duo contortionist act with fellow South African, Lunga. After 14 years with UniverSoul, Lucky brings new meaning to the term, multi-talented. He has been an acrobatic hip hop dancer, gymnast, trapeze artist, teeterboard, trampoline and acro-dunking with basketballs. But he admits his toughest act, with the greatest rewards, has been as Ringmaster. “It’s very exciting and challenging to be the Ringmaster,” he admits. “But it’s also hard work. I love everything I do for UniverSoul Circus. My family and I are truly blessed.”


Caribbean Dynasty

Caribbean Dance, Limbo and Stilts

Trinidad and Tobago

The exotic paradise of the Caribbean comes to life as dancers in vibrant and colorful costumes swing to the rhythms of the islands. Marvel at the agility of the dancers as they proudly perform the national dance of the Caribbean.  When the limbo bar goes to six inches from the floor – in a blaze of fire, it’s a spectacle to behold. Join in and clap your hands and dance as the energy, the beat and the pageantry of the Caribbean engulf the big top. The Caribbean dance team, in all its glory, is a perennial favorite at UniverSoul.


The Willie Family

Hire Wire


This six-person troupe is from Colombia, South America skillfully maintains balance while walking along a thin wire. And they perform these unbelievable acrobatic tricks an amazing 18 feet high. Training for this type of act requires much discipline and dedication. This incredible group spent more than a year perfecting their new act for its UniverSoul Circus debut. When asked what makes the UniverSoul Circus experience different from others, group member Dixie Meza responded emphatically: “Everything. The music, dancing, singing, just everything. The audience members are just as exciting as the performers. They are the performers!”


Duo Amour

Perch Pole Act


Making UniverSoul Circus their circus debut in 2018, Duo Amour is a truly unique aerial performance on the Perch Pole that is simply breathtaking. Getting their start only three years ago, the couple has trained extremely hard to perfect a beautiful love story told through fluid twists, bends, and turns. When asked what advice they would give to young performers, they stated: “You have to be willing to sacrifice a lot and be dedicated to your craft. The life of a performer is very challenging but super rewarding.”


Fresh the Clownsss


What started as a favor for a friend’s birthday party, turned into something larger than life. Hailing from Detroit, MI, Fresh the Clownsss bring a whole new meaning to the word clown! Forget the big red nose, big red shoes, and crazy ties . . . Fresh the Clownsss are always “swagged out” in the latest fashions and colorful hairstyles. The four members consider themselves unlike any clown brigade on the circuit today. The trio scouts the crowd daily for the best young dancers under the UniverSoul big top. Becoming an internet sensation in 2017 with their “Juju on the Beat” dance, our Clowns are taking it all in with a fresh perspective. Ira Smith, the group’s leader, was excited about their growing success: “We never thought that we would have so many fans. Traveling to different cities and touching kids all over the thru dance is the greatest feeling in the world.” When asked about his advice for young people he stated “Get an education and always believe in yourself no matter what.”


Bone Breakers


The bone breakers consist of four young men from Conakry, Guinea in West Africa. These guys are gifted with the ability to bend, twist, and distort their bodies in extreme ways. To maintain their flexibility, they often practice yoga. You can catch them doing the downward dog or a simple handstand in preparation for a show.


Teeterboard Act

Gabon, Guinea, Ethiopia & South Africa

They’re our African Dream Team – one of the most thrilling troupes one will ever witness from the entire African continent. UniverSoul Circus has brought these acrobats from Gabon, Guinea, Ethiopia, and South Africa together in a single ring. This high-powered group performs a rousing collection of daredevil stunts utilizing a teeterboard and the human body as a prop. Without teamwork, this Dream Team couldn’t possibly work. Its perfection in motion.


‘Big in Belgium’ returns to the Edinburgh Fringe

European Citizen Popsong - Bart Grietens
European Citizen Popsong - Bart Grietens

European Citizen Popsong – Bart Grietens

Following the huge success of the five previous seasons at Summerhall including productions such as the award-winning Us/ThemOne Hundred Homes and The Great Downhill Journey of Little Tommy which have since toured internationally and £¥€$ (LIES) which opens at the Almeida Theatre, London on 1 August, Big in Belgium, Richard Jordan Productions, Theatre Royal Plymouth and Summerhall in association with RBC/Upper Church, return to present a sixth BIG IN BELGIUM season at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.  Featuring some of the most significant theatre companies from the Flemish part of Belgium, each has previously been celebrated on the European mainland and are now presented for the first time to Edinburgh audiences, some translated and adapted, ready for breaking new grounds in English-speaking territories.

Vooruit, Arenbergschouwburg, Big in Belgium, Richard Jordan Productions and Theatre Royal Plymouth in association with Summerhall present

ANOTHER ONE –  Lobke Leirens and Maxim Storms

‘If you break my heart, I’ll break yours too.’

Two fictional mortals explore the sufferings of silence. Peacefully. Together they survive time. They defend their threatening depths, slowly squeezing into their world. This is how Another One becomes a sequence of tolerating and being tolerated. A nearly wordless creation by an inventive theatre couple which has previously toured in Belgium and the Netherlands

Lobke Leirens and Maxim Storms are both graduated from the School of Arts / KASK Ghent. In 2014, during TAZ (Theater Aan Zee), they presented their first collaboration; Krocht – a bizarre visual journey in which the spectator, while sitting on a chair, was wheeled through a macabre maze full of mealworms and half-people.

 ‘An intriguing well-performed chronicle about wanting to survive love when love hurts more than it brings comfort. ****’ (FocusKnack)

made and performed by: Lobke Leirens & Maxim Storms

Pidgeon by Diede Roosens & Carine De Swerts

Tipi by Wiebe Moerman

support/advice: Drift

 Big in Belgium, Richard Jordan Productions, Theatre Royal Plymouth in association with RBC present

DE FUUT – Bastiaan Vandendriessche

Winner of the Best International Performance Award at the Fringe Festival, Amsterdam.

Bastiaan Vandendriessche’s new play invites the audience to celebrate his sexuality towards two young girls of whom he was a leader in the Sea Scouts in Ghent, 6 years ago. ‘The thing I love about Lolita is that you’re just completely consumed and engrossed by the ardent passion of a man, who is forever doomed to crave something sinister, something twisted.’  Using theatre as an excuse to be truly honest about his feelings in these times of moral ambiguity, and as a good test if you believe that admiration is endless.

After his master International Political Sciences at the University of Ghent, Bastiaan decided that the world was too beautiful and cruel to stay stuck in reality so he went to study drama at the Conservatory of Antwerp. As an actor/performer, he has performed/performs with many companies including Ontroerend GoedOrkater and Jotka Bauwens. One of Belgium’s most exciting new young writers his next currently play, A white man’s burden, supported by Theatre Rotterdam and Theatre Zuidpool,will première in October 2018.

Recommended for those aged 16+

Vandendriessche shows himself as a gifted playwright and performer’ (Theaterkrant)

This play, with a strong text and a manipulative performer, deceives the audience to perfection’ (Focus Knack)

Marieke Dermul, DeBrakkeGrond, Big in Belgium, Richard Jordan and Theatre Royal Plymouth in association with Summerhall present


 In European Citizen Popsong, the audience takes a musical trip through Europe. Last year, theatre maker Marieke Dermul researched if such a thing as a European identity or a common European sense exists. The power of music has erased boundaries before, but can it make us feel connected as citizens, even after the Brexit? With this question in mind, she started a journey through Europe.

By collecting opinions and musical input by citizens from all over Europe, the pop song for unity arose. With lyrics as a collection of fears and doubts. With music as a symbol of hope.

Marieke Dermul studied at the Amsterdam University of the Arts, where she developed herself as a theatre maker and a multidisciplinary performer. She has worked in various theatre houses in Belgium and Holland (MAAS Theater and Dance, the Noord Nederlands Toneel theatre company, fABULEUS, HetPaleis). In Rite of Spring, she was internationally seen at the Assitej Festival in Cape Town, Schöne Aussicht in Stuttgart, Blickfelder festival in Zürich, and Schäxpir Theatre Festival in Linz.

Her theatre work is about ‘the politics of the personal’ – whether big political themes can be made personal in an interactive way. She dares to ‘not know’, always looking for an intimate and open conversation.

Music always plays a crucial role in her work, mixing pop music with documentary material to tell her story. She is inspired by the concept of ART-IVISM – whether art can be meaningful in society, by asking the questions which aren’t often asked. In her practice, humour and vulnerability go hand in hand.

 Compagnie Cornelius, Big in Belgium, Richard Jordan Productions and Theatre Royal Plymouth in association with RBC present


Nele Needs A Holiday is the stage name of Nele Van den Broeck, Belgian musician and theatre practitioner living in London.  Nele studied Drama at The Royal Conservatory of Ghent and Music Production at The London Centre Of Contemporary Music and has performed with renowned Belgian companies including the Royal Flemish Theatre, Kaaitheater and Kopergietery.  Nele has worked a television host for VRT, the Belgian public-service broadcaster, and had her own Radio Show, Nele in Radioland, on Belgian Radio 1. She writes a biweekly column for Belgian national newspaper De Standaard, in which she reports about her life in London. Last year, she wrote and directed How to Fail At Being Perfect: The Musical at Lyric Hammersmith, which will shortly begin its second run.

Nele writes songs about the tragedies of daily life: career paths without future, bands who threw her out, impossible love stories: She scratches where it itches. She turns her desires, problems and neuroses into up-tempo melodies with cheerful backing vocals. She aims at your heart, but hits you in the kidneys.

At Nele’s side stands her all female band, who deliver a whole lot of shalala and an instant-holiday feeling. Their music could be described as mean folk, friendly lo-fi, acoustic punk or new objectivity. Nele is inspired by anti-folk heroes like Jeffrey Lewis, Daniel Johnston and The Moldy Peaches, but also by sixties girl bands like The Ronettes, The Chrystals and The Shangri-Las. Further inspirations are a desire for revenge, the occasional hangover, a wide variety of personal issues, a complete lack of self-confidence and that feeling you don’t want to wake up.

Under the stage name Nele Needs A Holiday, she has been writing music and playing live concerts for over ten years. She won the prestigious Theater Aan Zee Award for music and has brought out two critically-acclaimed full albums, It’s My Party and Love Yeah.

In 2014, Nele had an existential crisis, decided to leave her home country, and moved to London following a dream of becoming an international popstar. That might not have worked out exactly as planned – yet – but it sure left Nele with a lot of material for a very amusing musical.

 A Belgian popstar moves to London to steal the job of British popstars. Luckily, austerity is there to stop her.

A witty pop-opera about a girl called Nele who turns her life into a big international mess because she wants to be famous on the other side of the English Channel. It’s a rags-to-more rags story showing the magnificent relief of grandiose failures in love, life, and a so-called career.

Expect theatrical show-tunes and profound torch-songs with an overriding eyebrow raised at the absurdity of life, brought by an all-female band meticulously trained to sing with their tongues in their cheeks.

‘The wittiest songs in years ****’ (De Standaard)

The Belgian Lena Dunham ****’ (Het Nieuwsblad)

 SKaGeN/KVS, Big in Belgium, Richard Jordan Productions and Theatre Royal Plymouth in association with Summerhall present

UNSUNG – Valentijn Dhaenens 

Valentijn Dhaenens returns to Edinburgh following sell-out performances of BigMouth and SMallWaR at the Edinburgh Fringe and throughout the world.

The creators of BigMouth return with a thrilling and timely new show. Delving deeply into the politician’s life, exposing those juicy backstage scenes we all look for and asking why anyone seeks recognition in a job that is known to be the most unpopular ever. Valentijn Dhaenens’ performance unravels the DNA of the politician – including attendant nastiness – creating a personage that mesmerises and repulses. While the world’s asleep, follow this political animal as he pulls into yet another hotel, peels off yet another white shirt, peps himself up for yet another speech. Today, we give you the all-time politician: the power junkie, rogue, strategist, but also the husband, father, and in the end, the very lonely human.


Venue:                                                 Summerhall, Summerhall Place, EH9 1PL

Another One                                                      4 – 26 August, (previews 1 – 3 August)

10:00-10:55 Main Hall (not 6, 11, 12, 13, 20 August)

Ticket prices – £10 (£8 concessions)

De Fuut                                                                8 – 26 August

8 – 12 August at 15.00

14 -19, 21-26 August at 19.45

Upper Church (not 6, 11, 12, 13, 20 August)

Ticket prices – £10 (£8 concessions)

European Citizen Pop Song                           4 – 26 August, (previews 1 & 3 August)

18:00 – 19:00 Red Lecture (not 2, 6, 13, 20 August)

Ticket prices – £10 (£8 concessions)

Nele Needs a Holiday : The Musical          4 – 26 August, (previews 1 & 3 August)

22:15 – 23:10 Upper Church (not 2, 6, 13, 20 August)

Ticket prices – £10 (£8 concessions)

Unsung                                                                4 – 26 August, (previews 1, 2, 3 August)

12:00-13:15 Main Hall (not 6, 13, 20 August)

Ticket prices – £12 (£10 concessions)

Box Office:                                                         0845 874 3001


The story of Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours comes to Edinburgh with a touch of magic

Creating Rumours:
 Creating Rumours:

Creating Rumours:

Creating Rumours by Emma Summerton charts the members of Fleetwood Mac at their most turbulent and most brilliant. As the band compose ‘the perfect album’, the imperfections of their own relationships start seeping through, and music history is made.

‘Engaging, intimate and thoughtful’. 8/10  – Impact Nottingham

Strangers: Pairs by multi-award winning magician Joe Strickland combines theatre and magic like you’ve never seen before. Three stories – a pair of lone survivors on a desert island, a brother and sister sifting through memories, two magicians preparing an act – appear to have no connection, but, of course, everything is not as it seems… This anthology piece is a play with an undercurrent of magic and mystery. Strickland Productions is dedicated to the reinvention of magic shows, incorporating tricks into dramatic narratives.

‘Fresh, imaginative, and thought provoking’ – The Scotsman

‘First and foremost, Strangers stands out as a well-delivered piece of conventional theatre… but it’s still triumphant proof of the creative potential of magic and theatre combined’ **** – FringeGuru

Strangers: Mindreader by Joe Strickland presents a magic show disguised as a monologue. Let us introduce you to a man who can do the impossible. Are his bizarre abilities genuine? Or is the truth stranger than fiction? After two successful previous years, Strangers returns to the Edinburgh Festival with a character who can read minds and tell the future; uniquely blending magic and theatre.

‘This theatrical magic show is ‘super [and] subversive’ – The Scotsman

‘Executed to perfection… Strickland is an excellent actor’ **** – FringeGuru

Listings Information

Ticketing website:

Box office: 0131 557 2124


Creating Rumours:

Greenside @ Nicolson Square (Venue 209)

3rd, 6th-11th August


Tickets: £10, £8 (conc)


Strangers: Pairs

Greenside @ Nicolson Square (Venue 209)

4th, 13th, 15th, 17th, 20th, 22nd, 24th August


Tickets: £10, £8 (conc)


Strangers: Mindreader

Greenside @ Nicolson Square (Venue 209)

5th, 14th, 16th, 18th, 21st, 23rd, 25th August


Tickets: £10, £8 (conc)



“Chemo Barbie” Edinburgh Fringe 2018!

Chemo Barbie
Chemo Barbie

Chemo Barbie

Heather Keller shares the remarkable, heartbreaking and even comical story of her journey through breast cancer in an award-winning solo show with new material! 
LOS ANGELES  In 2016, Heather Kellers world was rocked by a breast cancer diagnosis. Overnight, she went from being a healthy, vegan runner to a cancer patient and since then her life has been and continues to be an inspiring journey of growth filled with love, friendships, disappointments, betrayals and yes, even some humor. 
Keller shares this experience in her solo show Chemo Barbie: My Lady Bits Journey Through Breast Cancer, which made its world premiere last June as part of the Hollywood Fringe Festival. 
Chemo Barbie is an inspiring story told with painful honesty, comedic charm and tear-jerking dignity that takes you into the mind of a cancer patient from diagnosis to treatment. Keller shows what a patient goes through from doctor meetings, testing, treatments and peoples reactions around them. It shows the strength and support that develops with some friends and family while others shy away or leave altogether. Crafted from Heathers hand written journals, videos, texts, emails, storytelling and an online chronicling of her experience, Chemo Barbie is a show spoken and performed from the heart that tells the gritty, funny, heartbreaking and uplifting journey of a young woman conquering cancer while living life as normal as possible. 
When I was diagnosed, I had insane decisions to make, difficult things to choose, Keller said. I survived and I’m trying to do something positive from a negative. 
Since its debut, which earned a Fringe Encore Award, Keller has added some new material, including a section on her most recent scare with possible metastatic breast cancer and serving as foster parents with her husband. Offering perspective and inspiring others is ultimately Kellers goal with the show. The idea for a solo show came from the journals she kept during her treatment and a private online journal she shared with family and friends. Keller also recorded video of certain key moments in the process and posted it on the YouTube channel Keep Abreast with Heather.”  
A sketch writer for Upright Citizens Brigade and the Groundlings as well as an accomplished actress, Keller later performed a couple monologues from her experience at WeSpark Cancer Support Centre, as well as other places. Soon, others were asking to hear more of her experience. Working with her director Jessica Lynn Johnson, Keller started to experience a catharsis in putting a show together based on her experience and a joy in the knowledge that it could help others. 
I’m so proud and excited to have been invited to Edinburgh and into the largest arts festival in the World. Keller said. It’s because of so much love and support from family and friends that Chemo Barbie has been so wonderfully successful! I love being around positive, supportive, productive, talented folks. 
Chemo Barbie 
Written and performed by Heather Keller 
Directed by: Jessica Lynn Johnson 
Chemo Barbie is an inspiring story told with painful honesty, comedic charm and tear-jerking dignity that takes you into the mind of a cancer patient from diagnosis to treatment. Artist Heather Keller shows what a patient goes through from doctor meetings, testing, treatments and peoples reactions around them. It shows the strength and support that develops with some friends and family while others shy away or leave altogether. Crafted from Heathers hand written journals, videos, texts, emails, storytelling and an online chronicling of her experience, Chemo Barbie is a show spoken and performed from the heart that tells the gritty, funny, heartbreaking and uplifting journey of a young woman conquering cancer while living life as normal as possible. 
Teviot Square
1-27 ( not 19) August 2018 at 1.30pm
Twitter  @ChemoBarbieShow

Don’t Panic! It’s Challenge Anneka by Sophie Winter to run as part of the Scottish Mental Health Arts and Film Festival

Don’t Panic! It’s Challenge Anneka
Don’t Panic! It’s Challenge Anneka

Don’t Panic! It’s Challenge Anneka

Devised and performed by Sophie Winter

‘**** The Scotsman Top Rated Show Edinburgh Fringe 2016

**** ‘It’s truthful, it’s moving and, like Anneka, it never loses its resilient, funny and upbeat perspective….A delight’  Broadway Baby

**** ‘I implore you to go and see it. It will open your eyes.’ Arts Award Voice

**** ‘a real joy to experience.’ Edinburgh 49

The show runs as part of the Scottish Mental Health Arts and Film Festival; it will also be performed at The Bunker, London from 29th May – 9th June 19:00 (excl. Mondays; Matinee on Saturday and Sundays at 15:00)

Inspired by real-life stories, deviser and performer Sophie Winter dons a luminescent shell suit, bum bag and sparkly positive attitude to channel the spirit of the woman for whom no challenge is too big in a continuing effort to overcome her own challenge: the anxiety she has lived with for fifteen years. This one-woman show, made with input from Anneka Rice, the creator and star of the hit 90s TV series Challenge Anneka, presents a frank, funny and open exploration of a topic that often remains taboo. Theatre company on the button have been working with Anxiety UK and #itaffectsme to raise awareness about the mental health disorder that affects 1 in 6 people every year.

As well as using her own experiences, Sophie has drawn inspiration from interviews with other people with anxiety.

Challenge Anneka was a BBC series aired between 1989 and 1995 that saw presenter Anneka Rice travelling around the country in a signature blue truck completing charitable tasks, such as building a children’s play area, within a set number of days, persuading people to donate time and resources for free to succeed.

After a full run at Summerhall during the Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2016, on the button toured the show to secondary schools, running workshops exploring mental health for students in Year 8 and above.

Sophie said, “Anxiety affects me in different ways, but in particular taking public transport can be a nightmare; it can lead to epic, exhausting treks that then add to my anxiety. I’ve had anxiety for the past 15 years, which still seems like quite a big thing to say. It’s amazing how many people I’ve spoken to have said ‘Wow! I had no idea!’ And I guess that’s the point about making the show: partly to encourage people to talk more about their anxiety and partly to help people understand it better. I wanted to make sure that the show was fun and accessible for everyone, and I suddenly thought of Challenge Anneka; I absolutely loved the programme when I was a kid, and I thought that Anneka was incredible at staying calm in situations that were super stressful. So as well as making the show more fun, channelling Anneka makes it easier to talk about my anxiety.”

on the button make theatre that moves. They are drawn to stories that go unheard: people who are ignored, voices of dissent, perspectives which are new to them. Their show No Place Like appeared at ZOO at the Fringe and won Best Ensemble at The Mimetic Festival 2013, and The Overcoat was nominated for best new play at the Buxton Fringe in 2012.

Performer-deviser Sophie Winter is a London based theatre maker and musician who graduated from the Ecole Jacques Lecoq in 2011. Her credits include working with Red Handed Theatre Company, Upstart Theatre, Ice and Fire Theatre Company and Forest Forge Theatre. As a director she has worked with Longborough Festival Opera and Yellow Earth Theatre. Sophie also works closely with Some Voices, an 800 strong choir, who she conducts and sings with professionally.

Director-deviser Ben Hadley is a theatre-maker – director, performer, writer – and co-artistic director of on the button with Sophie. He trained at the Lecoq School. He recently worked as a performer for Potential Difference and Concert Theatre. His recent work includes movement direction and dramaturgy for experimental choir Musarc, and as well as solo projects Camberwell Palace and iou1.

on the button have been working with #itaffectsme, an initiative to raise awareness and reduce the stigma of mental health which has reached 3.5 million people worldwide. As well as using her own experiences, deviser and performer Sophie Winter has drawn inspiration from interviews with other people with anxiety.

For more information on #itaffectsme, visit

‎@on_thebutton |

Running Time: 60 minutes | Suitable for ages 12+

Company Information

Devised and performed by Sophie Winter

Directed and co-devised by Ben Hadley

Lighting design by Jamie Platt

Sound design by Jon McLeod

Film- maker Matt Stacey

Developed with researchers from University College London


The Unknown Soldier returns for 5 performances only at the Assembly Rooms

The Unknown Soldier - Ross Ericson
The Unknown Soldier - Ross Ericson

The Unknown Soldier – Ross Ericson

A thought provoking, moving, and even humorous solo piece that brings to life this little known period at the end of World War One – looking at the conflict through the eyes of a man who has stayed on after the guns fell silent to help clear the battlefields and build the great cemeteries.

In the Centenary year of the end of the First World War the hit 2016 Edfringe sell-out show The Unknown Soldier returns for 5 performances only at the Assembly Rooms.

‘Do I need to see another World War One play?’ one critic asked writer and performer Ross Ericson. ‘I know what he meant,’ Ericson said, ‘I very nearly shelved the idea.  If it wasn’t for that idiot Gove going on about how we should celebrate the First World War as a great victory the play might not have seen the light of day.  But I am glad it did for I believe this is a fresh approach from a very different perspective, which tells a story you might not have heard before.’ And what did the doubtful critic think of it in the end?  Well we think he liked it – he gave it five stars.

The Unknown Soldier has received much acclaim, from critics and audiences alike, and after its success at Edinburgh Festival Fringe it has gone on to tour nationally and internationally, and has been published by Bloomsbury.

If you don’t ever want to see another WW1 play, then you want to see *this* WW1 play. Superb! 

★★★★★ Fringe Guru

Unmissable… [this play] has so much relevance in today’s society

★★★★★ Edinburgh Festival Magazine

 Powered by a magnificent solo performance from Ross Ericson

★★★★★ ThreeWeeks

 An exemplary piece of solo theatre. It can certainly hold its head up among the best of war stories★★★★★ TVBomb

 An original perspective… poignant and thought-provoking

 ★★★★The Independent

 “It’s not about glory or futility, it’s about the loyalty forged between friends.”

 ★★★★The Scotsman

 “You won’t be disappointed”


Provocative, funny, confronting – Soho Theatre’s Edinburgh Festival Fringe programme 2018

Underground Railroad Game. Photo by Ben Arons
Natalie Palamides: NATE. Photo by Nick Rasmussen

Natalie Palamides: NATE. Photo by Nick Rasmussen

‘Soho Theatre is back at the world’s biggest arts festival with unheard voices from across the globe. Class, gender and identity pulses through the heart of the work with these entertaining and truly live artists from around the world. From Cork to New York, we have it covered from the newest of angles.’ Steve Marmion, Artistic Director

Underground Railroad Game. Photo by Ben Arons

Underground Railroad Game. Photo by Ben Arons

From the most provocative new theatre to cabaret that confronts and comedy that takes home the Festival’s biggest prize, Soho Theatre’s Edinburgh Fringe has always been an exceptional offering of some of the most talked about talent from within and beyond UK’s borders. This year will be no different as we present a programme of 15 new shows by award winners and nominees alongside exciting festival debutantes from around the world.

OBIE Award Winner for Best New American Theatre Work, Underground Railroad Game, is a no holds barred look at race, sex and power politics in America. A poignant yet explosive exploration of one of the most toxic of American legacies; a playful teaching exercise which throws off its disguise to become a theatrical firecracker.First produced in New York by the award-winning theatre Ars Nova, the play will have its UK premiere at the Traverse immediately followed by a run at Soho Theatre’s Dean Street home.

Le Gateau Chocolat: ICONS. Photo by Eli Schmidt

Le Gateau Chocolat: ICONS. Photo by Eli Schmidt

Shortlisted for Soho Theatre’s biennial Verity Bargate Award, award-winning writer and performer Karen Cogan’s Drip Feed is a fast new, infectiously dark comedy about the messiness of being young, female and queer in Ireland. Though set in the 90s this is a story marked by issues demanding consideration in Ireland 2018: sexuality, intimacy, addiction and mental health.

An arresting first production from writer Ed Edwards, inspired by his own experience, The Political History of Smack and Crack is an angry, funny love-song to a lost generation annihilated by the heroin epidemic of Thatcher’s years, leaping from the 1981 riots to present day survival on the streets of Manchester.

Edinburgh Comedy Awards Best Newcomer and MICF Barry Award nominee Natalie Palamides wants to know what it means to be a man. Natalie doesn’t have a clue, but NATE does. Natalie is NATE. Co-devised and directed by Edinburgh Comedy Award winner Doctor Brown, join NATE on his struggle to find self-expression and true love, all while still upholding society’s pressures ‘to be a man’.  

 International debuts include award-winning Ivan Aristeguieta (Winner Best Newcomer 2016 Sydney Comedy Festival, Best Comedy Adelaide Fringe 2017) who emigrated to Australia from Venezuela only to become one of the hottest comics Down Under; Journalist, Bollywood Film Writer and India’s Most Intelligent Comedian (New York Times) Anuvab Pal who has a colonial hangover in ‘New India’ in his show Empire, and; New York’s cosmic comedian Myq  Kaplan, who wants to take audiences (and himself, and the universe) on a journey of kindness in All Killing Aside, a comedy show about truth, love, and not murdering.

From the UK, last year’s Edinburgh Comedy Award Best Show nominee Ahir Shah returns to Cabaret Voltaire with Duffer, another high-intensity stand-up show full of political vigour, philosophical inquiry and sweet gags. Best Newcomer nominee Lauren Pattison is looking forward to delivering some new home truths with her wicked, warm and authentic brand of humour, following her whirlwind year of awards, nominations and sold-out shows. And Jessie Cave brings her acute blend of confessional comedy and DIY Performance Art in Sunrise, over-sharing as she does best about heartbreak, motherhood and keeping up the Instagram Illuminati.

After three years away, opera and lycra loving cabaret sensation, Le Gateau Chocolat returns to the Fringe to debut his captivating international smash-hit, Icons. Seamlessly weaving through pop, opera and rock, from Whitney to Pavarotti, Gateau investigates his own objects of worship through the songs and music of his personal icons.

Following their sell-out global-stadium-Pop-tour that came to an earth-shattering finale in Edinburgh last year –DENIM broke up. Humanity has been in mourning. The five queens will reunite for one night only. All month.And, as if that’s not enough, for the first two weeks of the festival Denim are doubling up to present the perfect place for young’uns to scream, dream and become a queen in The Denim Juniors, their first drag pop concert for kids.

Edinburgh Best Newcomer Nominee 2016 Jayde Adams is going full diva this Fringe with glorious gowns, acerbic charm and show-stopping music by Olivier Award winning composer Richard Thomas. And Drag Superstar Jonny Woo and Richard Thomas bring Jonny Woo’s All Star Brexit Cabaret, a sequin-spangled musical ripped straight from the headlines.


Soho Theatre presents the Ars Nova Production of


Created and performed by Jennifer Kidwell & Scott R. Sheppard

With Lightning Rod Special

Directed by Taibi Magar

Edinburgh Fringe. Traverse 1. UK Premiere. 18+. Duration 75 mins.

Sun 5 – Sun 26 August (not 3, 6, 13, 20, 25). Previews Thu 2 Aug, 7pm & Sat 4 Aug, 5.30pm.

Press night Sun 5 Aug, 9.15pm

Times and dates: 9, 16, 22 Aug, 10am / 23, 26 Aug, 1pm / 10, 17, 24 Aug, 4pm / 4 Aug, 5.30pm / 2, 11, 14, 18 Aug, 7pm /

5 Aug (press), 9.15pm / 7, 8, 12, 15, 19, 21 Aug, 10pm. Tickets £21.50 (£16.50 / £15.00). (£15 / £9 previews).


Soho Theatre. Tue 4 – Sat 29 Sep, 7.15pm. Captioned performance Tue 18 Sep, 7.15pm. Tickets from £8 @sohotheatre @arsnova #URGTour

Soho Theatre presents


By Karen Cogan

Directed by Oona Murphy. Performed by Karen Cogan.

Assembly George Square, The Bubble.

Wed 1 Aug to Sun 26 Aug, 2.30pm (not 14). 60mins. From £12 (£8 previews). @sohotheatre @KarenMCogan

Most Wanted, Offstage Theatre, Soho Theatre, W14 Productions and Alastair Michael present


Directed by Cressida Brown

Paines Plough’s Roundabout, Summerhall.

Fri 3 – Sun 26 Aug, 5.30pm (not 7, 14 & 21). 60 mins. From £10 (£9 previews). @sohotheatre @Summerhallery #RoundaboutPP

Soho Theatre in association with Avalon presents


Directed by Adam Brace

Free Fringe. Laughing Horse @ Cabaret Voltaire.

Thu 2 – Sat 26 August, 2.15pm. 60 mins @sohotheatre @ahirshah

Jessie Cave with Soho Theatre c/o Curtis Brown Ltd


Directed by Adam Brace

The Stand 3 & 4.

Wed 1 – Sat 26 Aug, 2.25pm (not 13). 60 mins. From £10. @sohotheatre @jessiecave

Soho Theatre and United Agents present


Directed by Steve Marmion

Assembly George Square, Piccolo

Fri 3 to Sat 19 Aug, 4.30pm (not 13). 60mins. From £9 (£5 previews). @sohotheatre @Denim_uk

Soho Theatre presents


Directed by Doctor Brown

Pleasance Courtyard, Beside

Wed 1 – Sat 26 Aug, 6pm (not 13). 60 mins. From £10 (£7 previews). @sohotheatre @natdogkatdog #NATE

David Johnson, Jon Mackay and Reuben Cook in association with Soho Theatre present


Assembly George Square Gardens

Thu 2 – Mon 27 Aug, 6pm (not 13 & 20). 60mins. From £13 (£8 previews). @sohotheatre @JonnyWooUK

Soho Theatre in association with Mick Perrin Worldwide Management present


Pleasance Courtyard, That

Wed 1 – Sat 26 Aug, 7pm (not 13). 60 mins. From £10 (£7 previews). @sohotheatre @AnuvabPal

Soho Theatre in association with United Agents present


Pleasance Courtyard, Attic

Wed 1 – Sun 26 Aug, 7pm (not 13). 60mins. From £11 (£6.50 previews). @sohotheatre @laurenpattison

Soho Theatre in association with Laughing Stock Productions present


Edinburgh Fringe

Pleasance Courtyard, Bunker One

Wed 1 to Sat 26 Aug (not 13). 7.15pm. 60 mins. From £10 (£7 previews). @sohotheatre @IvanComedy

Soho Theatre Downstairs

Tue 28 Aug – Sat 1 Sept, 7.30pm. 60 mins. From £11 @sohotheatre @IvanComedy

Soho Theatre presents


Assembly George Square, Piccolo

Thu 2 to Sat 26 Aug, 7.30pm (not 13 & 20). 70mins. From £13 (£8 previews). @sohotheatre @LeGateauChoc

Soho Theatre presents


Underbelly Bristo Square, Fresian

Wed 1 – Sat 26 Aug (not 13), 9.15pm. 60mins. From £11 (£7 previews). @sohotheatre @MyqKaplan

Johnson, Mackay, Soho Theatre and United Agents present


Pleasance Courtyard, Pleasance Two.

Wed 1 – Mon 27 Aug, 9.30pm. 60mins. From £12 (£7.50 previews). @sohotheatre @jaydeadams

Soho Theatre and United Agents present


Directed by Steve Marmion

Assembly George Square Gardens, Piccolo

Thu 2 to Sat 26 Aug (not 13), 10.30pm. 60mins. From £12 (£7 previews). @sohotheatre @Denim_uk


Planet Caramel: Rotations in Flavour Space – Edinburgh Fringe 2018

Planet Caramel: Rotations in Flavour Space - Edinburgh Fringe 2018
Planet Caramel: Rotations in Flavour Space - Edinburgh Fringe 2018

Planet Caramel: Rotations in Flavour Space – Edinburgh Fringe 2018

Planet Caramel are a high concept, high octane sketch trio from Edinburgh, whose brand of comedy – like the caramel wafer you’ll get for free just for coming to see them – is short and sweet.

Planet Caramel are Alex HarwoodDavid Blair and Richard Duffy, three left-field offshoots from The Edinburgh Revue. Having been involved in the writing, performing and directing of every single one of the Revue’s Fringe shows since 2011, they formed Planet Caramel in 2014.

This is their fourth year at the Edinburgh Fringe following on from the success of Wafer Biscuit in 2015, A Taste of Planet Caramel in 2016 and Hot, Sexy, Kind and Desperate in 2017. Rotations in Flavour Space promises to be a light-speed sketch comedy experience like no other, showcasing the very best this group has to offer.

This year the trio have found success having some of their work showcased as part of BBC Alba’s new sketch show FUNC as well as providing material for Measuring Humanity, an international research project in conjunction with The University of Edinburgh.

Planet Caramel are currently Scotland’s only regularly gigging sketch group, becoming regulars at The Stand andMonkey Barrel comedy clubs as well as taking on Glasgow Comedy Festival and Brighton Fringe each year.

In previous years they hosted Edinburgh’s only sketch and character comedy night, Planet Caramel’s Hot Bedperforming alongside the likes of Norris and Parker and Twins.

Founded on the maxim ‘no sketches over a minute’, their style has since grown to encompass bigger characters, musical numbers and dance routines. While sketches and characters flow into each other, brief bursts of daftness, surprise and fun are still the bread and butter of this trio.

Come and see one of the best new up and coming sketch acts on the Fringe.

What the press has said about Planet Caramel:

Bright and witty… fast-paced, energetic and wonderfully silly.” ★★★★★ Ed Fringe Review

One of the most memorable comedy routines I’ve seen.” The Skinny

Glimmers of comedy genius… genuinely new and presciently funny.” ThreeWeeks

Truly impressive.” TV Bomb

At times terrifying… predominantly brilliant.” The Student


Latest gig list and videos at

Facebook: /planetcaramel

Twitter: @Planet_Caramel

40 sketches on YouTube and counting…


Listings information:

Date: 2nd – 26th August 2018 (not 13th)

Show: Planet Caramel: Rotations in Flavour Space

Venue: Just the Tonic at The Grassmarket Centre, The Little Kirk (venue 27)

Address: 86 Candlemaker Row, Edinburgh, EH1 2QA

Time: 11.20pm (1 hour)

Price: Reserve a ticket for £5 or Pay What You Want at the venue

Box Office: /

Free Tunnock’s Caramel Wafer for every audience member.



Selke Award Winner FALKLAND makes UK Premiere Performances at Brighton Fringe



36 years ago, on April 2, 1982, Argentine forces invaded and occupied the Falkland Islands in an attempt to establish the sovereignty it claimed over them. On April 5th, three days later, Britain responded and the ensuing 74-day conflict claimed 904 lives, including 3 civilians, as well as wounded thousands more. Now, 36 years later, Tasty Monster Productions and acclaimed playwright Heather Bagnall present the award-winning production FALKLAND as part of the Brighton Fringe Festival, the East to Edinburgh Festival NYC, and Edinburgh Fringe 2018 to commemorate the memory of the people whose lives were irreversibly changed by those fateful ten and a half weeks. This production shines a much needed light on the idea that history can and does repeat itself and in the current political climate how power can corrupt the lives of everyone it touches.

From the team who brought you the quirky antics of SINGLEMARRIEDGIRL, the poignant yet uplifting family drama Ferdinand, and the darkly comic Everybody’s Crazy…or Maybe It’s Just Me (which will also have three performances at the Brighton Fringe), as well as the out-of-this-world family musical The Space Pirate Puppy Musical!, comes a fifth original show – a hard-hitting new drama with the Falklands War as it’s backdrop – FALKLAND.

Written by Heather Bagnall and featuring Luke TudballFALKLAND saw its world-premiere performances in Florida in May 2017 at Tampa International Fringe and Orlando International Fringe Festival where the production was selected as ‘Best of Fest’ by the Orlando Sentinel. This year FALKLAND also won the Selke Award for Best Show of the Fringe at Pittsburgh International Fringe Festival and recently has been added to the long list for the Brighton Fringe Newcomer Award by Voice Magazine UK. 

Tasty Monster Productions will present six performances at the Rialto Theatre, Brighton opening on Tuesday, May 29, 2018 and running until Sunday, June 3, 2018 with performances in July in New York City before returning to Edinburgh in August.

Under the starry blanket of night two unlikely friends, an idealistic young soldier and a reluctant farmer turned Captain, find a new camaraderie as the big show plays out in the theatre of war surrounding them. Bitter conflict, questionable politics, and moral debate engage us in a traumatic, but necessary, journey through the lives of the two men, their families, and the many twists and turns they encounter on the road to redemption.

LUKE TUDBALL is an actor, producer, mentor and director who has worked all over Europe and the United States. He trained at the Royal Central School of Speech & Drama, London, the University of East Anglia, Norwich, the Russian School of Acting, The Actors Centre, London, The Actors Center, Washington DC, and TVI Actors Studio, New York. With his partner in life and art, Heather Bagnall, he is Co-Founding Artistic Director of the award-winning Tasty Monster Productions. His many other credits include work in theatre, voiceover, radio, film and television. As a performer he has worked with, amongst others, the Shakespeare Theatre Company (Washington DC), the Studio Theatre (DC), Theatre East (NY), Mind The Gap (NY), Vital Theatre Company (NY), The Colonial Players (MD), and 1st Stage Theatre (VA). His recent directing credits, amongst others, include ‘The Playboy of the Western World’ (Stratford-Upon-Duncan), ‘Mrs. Jansen Isn’t Here Now’ (Ego Actus), ‘SINGLEMARRIEDGIRL’ (Tasty Monster Productions), ‘Fish Tacos’ (Strangebird Productions), ‘Swing’ (Strangebird Productions), ‘Miss Frances and the Bamboo Garden’ (Tasty Monster Productions), ‘Just Deserts’ (Tasty Monster Productions), ‘Personals’ (Talking Horse Productions), and ‘A Man of No Importance’ (Talking Horse Productions) -which is about to be re-staged by popular demand. Luke is a member of British Actors Equity, the American Actors Equity Association, SAG-AFTRA, The Off-Broadway Alliance, the MAC, and The Spotlight. Please visit:

HEATHER BAGNALL is an actress, dancer, model, choreographer, director, playwright, arts educator and Co-Founding Artistic Director of Tasty Monster Productions which has produced original and additional works since 2011. She studied with the Everyman Theatre, Baltimore Theatre Alliance, The Actor’s Center, Washington, DC, In-Flight Aerial Theatre, The Trapeze School of New York in DC and The Second City in Chicago. Heather has performed extensively across the United States and throughout Europe and has been touring her original work SINGLEMARRIEDGIRL, voted a top ten solo show at Edinburgh Fringe Festival in 2014, since 2011. Additionally, Heather is an educator and arts consultant working with non-profit arts organizations in Maryland, DC, Virginia, and New York. Heather performs regularly with the 29th Street Playwrights Collective in New York and is a Founding Member and Associate Director of Stratford-Upon-Duncan. She is also a member of the Dramatists Guild.

Tasty Monster Productions, founded in 2011 by Heather Bagnall and Luke Tudball, is a vibrant and exciting enterprise which brings together some of the best new talent in the United States and the United Kingdom. Through innovative theatre, cabarets, small ensemble shows and lesser known musicals, Tasty Monster brings engaging new and re-envisioned works to a broad audience while expanding the use of technology and multi-media as a tool for storytelling.

 VENUE: Rialto Theatre – 11 Dyke Road, Brighton, UK BN1 3FE

 PERFORMANCES (60 min): Tuesday, May 29, 2018 – 5:15 pm; Wednesday, May 30, 2018 – 5:15 pm; Thursday, May 31, 2018 – 5:15 pm; Friday, June 1, 2018 – 5:15 pm; Saturday, June 2, 2018 – 5:15 pm; Sunday, June 3, 2018 – 5:15 pm

TICKETS: £10 (£8 Concessions, £6 Students). Group tickets available upon request –