Many of us will have walked the streets of Brighton a thousand times. We've stared at the wondrous and exotic creations in the windows of of Choccywoccydoodah, we've shopped at Infinity Foods and eaten brunch at Mange Tout. We've probably walked the circumference of the globe the amount of times we've been up and down the pier and we know that summer is the time for BBQs on the beach - or for avoiding the tourists. However, for many people bringing shows and exhibits to Brighton Fringe, they will be stepping foot in Brighton for the very first time.
I was told by a friend who has travelled all over Europe that out of all the places she has been, Brighton was by far her favourite.
Izzy McDonald is Co-Artistic Director of Rorschach Beast, a theatre company who have the simple ambition of wanting to perform good stories that are well told. They've brought their show Bus Boy (24th May-27th May, The Warren) with them all the way from Australia after exceedingly good reviews at Perth's Fringe World in 2017, where they won an incredible three awards. Bus Boy tells the story of a boy who rides a bicycle, but dreams of buses instead. When he meets Jerry, a young woman stuck in transition, they strike up an immediate friendship which results in them sharing secrets, achieving dreams and getting into and out of trouble.
We caught up with Izzy, who like many of the Fringe's international artists, is visiting Brighton for the very first time, to discover what surprised her most about the city we know and love so well:
1. Brighton's super supportive community
There are multiple Facebook groups offering advice and help, plus the Brighton Fringe organisational crew have been incredible. This has also been especially true of our venue, The Warren. They've just been so supportive, which is an incredible feat considering the size of the Fringe. It's quite daunting coming so far to a whole new country with new audiences, so that level of support was a really nice surprise.
2. How much Brighton feels like home
I live in a place called Fremantle in Western Australia, which is a small coastal city with a long maritime history. It has beautiful old buildings, fresh sea breezes and everyone goes to the beach. It has a great arts and music scene (maybe not as big as Brighton) and just has a lovely feel about it all.
3. Brighton's ride sharing bicycle scheme
I just think that's so cool because we have nothing like that at home! Or at least on that large of a scale.
4. How beloved Brighton is
I was told by a friend who has travelled all over Europe and has been to lots of renowned and beautiful cities, such as Prague, Barcelona and Paris, that out of all the places she has been, Brighton was by far her favourite.
5. That Brighton has a pebble beach
What's up with that! The beaches back home are mostly all sand, and in some places its so soft and fine it squeaks under your feet! At least the wind doesn't blow it in your eyes though, but I thought that was pretty surprising.