Road to the Fringe - Through the eyes of a producer

See as many other shows as you can and help spread the word. Make sure to get to Fringe City, either to do a showcase performance of your piece or just flyer

For this year’s Brighton Fringe, Broadway Baby Editor Beth Troakes has been on the hunt to for the insider information as our performers, venue mangers, programmers, press teams and technicians prepare for the start of what’s looking to be our best ever yet Brighton Fringe.

We’ve asked a series of quick fire questions to give you a bite sized chunk of just what it means to be a part of this fantastic, fast-paced May Festival.

First up we have our quick fire questions to those working behind the scenes….

Hello! Who are you and what will you be doing this Fringe?

Hi! I'm Rosie Blackwell-Sutton. This year the Fringe will be a bit different for me - I’m producing my own show, King of the Fringe (12 May at The Marlborough) and have also been doing some freelance marketing and communications work for HIP (9-11 May at The Marlborough), STAMP (6-9, 21 May, 3, 5 June at The Warren) and Operation Love Story (6-8 May at The Warren).

How many Brighton Fringe Festivals do you have under your belt?

I'm a Brightonian, so I've been going since I was a baby - so realistically it'll be my 25th Brighton Fringe. However this will be my 6th Fringe where I've either been working for the festival or putting something on in it.

Which shows should we be looking out for this year?

Of course all of the shows I've mentioned above (King of the Fringe, HIP, Operation Love Story and STAMP). I'm also really looking forward to seeing Break Yourself and Joan at The Marlborough - two shows that feature drag kings.

Do you have any advice for first time Fringe performers?

Take advantage of what Brighton Fringe offers - they have loads of free workshops going on before and throughout the festival (check website for details). See as many other shows as you can and help spread the word. Make sure to get to Fringe City, either to do a showcase performance of your piece (if it'll work outside) or just to flyer.

Do you have any advice for first time Fringe audiences?

Take risks - you might uncover the next big thing, or see the worst show of your life - but you'll be talking about it for ages either way! Also get as involved as you can - visit Fringe City on New Road & Pavilion Gardens on the weekends, see lots of free shows across town in venues you've never been to before and hang out in The Warren or Spiegeltent Gardens to soak up the real festival vibes.

What is you most memorable moment from past Fringe Festivals? Good or bad, you decide!

There are so many to choose from! Julian Caddy, if you're reading this - I won't mention the relay... (d’oh)... But as a producer my most memorable moment was putting on my first ever King of the Fringe show in 2014. We had to turn an empty shop on St James Street in to a venue with lighting, a stage, a bar and a sound desk cobbled together - we managed to sell out the event and it was a real coming together of a now blossoming drag king community in Brighton.

If you had to describe Brighton Fringe in one word, what would it be?


Since you’re here…

… we have a small favour to ask. We don't want your money to support a hack's bar bill at Abattoir, but if you have a pound or two spare, we really encourage you to support a good cause. If this article has either helped you discover a gem or avoid a turkey, consider doing some good that will really make a difference.

You can donate to the charity of your choice, but if you're looking for inspiration, there are three charities we really like.

Mama Biashara
Kate Copstick’s charity, Mama Biashara, works with the poorest and most marginalised people in Kenya. They give grants to set up small, sustainable businesses that bring financial independence and security. That five quid you spend on a large glass of House White? They can save someone’s life with that. And the money for a pair of Air Jordans? Will take four women and their fifteen children away from a man who is raping them and into a new life with a moneymaking business for Mum and happiness for the kids.
Donate to Mama Biashara now

Theatre MAD
The Make A Difference Trust fights HIV & AIDS one stage at a time. Their UK and International grant-making strategy is based on five criteria that raise awareness, educate, and provide care and support for the most vulnerable in society. A host of fundraising events, including Bucket Collections, Late Night Cabarets, West End Eurovision, West End Bares and A West End Christmas continue to raise funds for projects both in the UK and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Donate to Theatre MAD now

Acting For Others
Acting for Others provides financial and emotional support to all theatre workers in times of need through the 14 member charities. During the COVID-19 crisis Acting for Others have raised over £1.7m to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
Donate to Acting For Others now