One Stop Body Shop

One Stop Body Shop

Please! Come in and browse. You can choose from researcher Gill Haddow’s range of options for the repair and replacement of organs. Currently, she has several options in stock: human organs from deceased or living donors are all the rage nowadays but, yes, supplies are limited... 

The Antibiotic Apocalypse Threatens Us All!

The Antibiotic Apocalypse Threatens Us All!

A lack of antibiotics to treat infection could soon bring us to a post-apocalyptic era where people die from minor injuries, or following routine operations. More and more bacteria are becoming resistant, yet no new antibiotics have been developed since the 1980s... 

Hug a Thug

Hug a Thug

Do you think the criminal justice system is a soft touch? Do you think that prisons make life too easy for criminals? Would you like to bring back hanging? Then this show is for you! Leading youth criminal justice researchers Lesley McAra and Susan McVie will bring you the stories of prisoners, many of whom committed crimes from a young age... 

If I Googled You, What Would I Find?

If I Googled You, What Would I Find?

It’s a troubling question and most of us probably don’t know the answer. Most of us probably don’t know just how much of information about us can be found online, so what can we do to manage our digital footprint and what are the implications of having our data available online? The Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas are here to find out with the help of Nicola Osborne from the University of Edinburgh... 

Dolly the Sheep: Major Discovery or Minor Distraction?

Dolly the Sheep: Major Discovery or Minor Distraction?

Twenty years after her birth, Dolly the Sheep is a scientific and Scottish icon. However, she was only ever a small part of a much bigger research programme and the cloning technique used to produce her has now been overtaken by newer, better technologies... 

Is the Cyber Armageddon Coming?

Is the Cyber Armageddon Coming?

Past wars have started for the most trivial of reasons. In the 21st century, will one country’s cyberattack on another trigger the end of days? Maybe we’re being paranoid; experts now suspect North Korea had nothing to do with the recent Sony data breach... 

IndyRef2: The Rebellion Continues?

IndyRef2: The Rebellion Continues?

Tory victory at the General Election, the crushing of Labour in Scotland, chaos on the Opposition front benches. England voted Leave, Scotland voted Remain. Britain’s on the edge of Brexit, so is the stage set for Indyref 2? Was the referendum a once in a lifetime opportunity? Which referendum? Join us to hear what Tommy Sheppard (MP and Scottish National Party politician) and Nicola McEwen (Professor of Territorial Politics at the University of Edinburgh and Associate Director of the ESRC Centre on Constitutional Change) have to say – but more importantly, get your voice heard. 

More Plastics = A Better World

More Plastics = A Better World

Plastics harm our world, right? Costing us energy, using up resources and polluting? Wrong. Research chemist Michael Shaver says we would be foolish to use less plastic; we need to be using more! The problem isn’t plastic: it’s the people who use and market it... 

Lost Voice Guy: Disability for Dunces Volume Two

Lost Voice Guy: Disability for Dunces Volume Two

Award-winning comedian Lost Voice Guy started off in a disabled Steps tribute band. They were called Ramps. That didn't work out though, so he's answering more of your stupid questions instead... 

Let Extremists Speak?

Let Extremists Speak?

In the name of safeguarding and security, British counter-terrorism legislation is becoming increasingly restrictive of expression that is deemed to support non-violent extremism. This restriction of expression seems counter-intuitive to some of our most cherished British liberal values... 

Should We Have Zoos?

Should We Have Zoos?

Do zoos still have a place in society? If so, what is it? asks esteemed biologist Mary Bownes. When zoos first appeared they were zoological gardens, meant to show exotic animals to a public that would never otherwise have a chance to see them... 

How Cybercrime Benefits Society

How Cybercrime Benefits Society

When we’re online, most of us choose to give up our privacy for the sake of convenience. With all our personal data potentially flying around on the internet, how do most of us stay as safe as we do? Sociologist Angus Bancroft reckons that we owe it to the criminal underbelly of the internet – the darknet... 

Is This Your Life?

Is This Your Life?

We all leave a trace. (Some have a seemingly complete documentary of their lives on Facebook.) Archivist Rachel Hosker asks: If you were to leave an archive of your life, what would be in it? Would (and could) it reflect you, your life, thoughts, personality, work, interests, and relationships? What would be destroyed and forgotten? Would others put the same things in an archive about you? Is it possible to leave behind an authentic memory of yourself? Would you be okay with the memory left behind, and what researchers do with it?  

Funny for a Grrrl

Funny for a Grrrl

Witty, fresh and clever, Funny for a Grrrl serves a refreshing line-up of stand-up in this year’s Fringe. With the show lasting just under an hour and including three acts, it would have been easy for the sets to appear rushed or for the audience to not really get into it... 

Tax Powers? Careful What You Wish For!

Tax Powers? Careful What You Wish For!

From 2016/17, the Scottish Government can set income tax rates and thresholds for Scottish taxpayers. This has major implications for everyone in Scotland, not just the rich. Will UK taxpayers take advantage of the ‘close connection’ rule to relocate to the more favourable tax jurisdiction? Will this affect money available for public expenditure? What will happen if devolution goes further, and the Scottish Government gets corporation tax powers? Will companies restructure to avoid paying tax in both jurisdictions? Is this another instance where we’re better together? Or is it a price worth paying?  

Can Anyone Write a Romance Novel?

Can Anyone Write a Romance Novel?

Anyone can write a romance novel. Or can they? Amy Burge did a whole PhD on romance novels (yes, you can do that) and reckons there’s more to them than you think. Come along to this sixty-minute collaborative writing session and decide for yourself if romance novels deserve more esteem... 

The Science of Laughter

The Science of Laughter

We all love a good laugh, but why do we do it? What is it exactly that makes our mouths curl up, eyes water and noses snort like a pig? Join Professor Ian Mclaughlin and special guest Doctor Daniel Watkins from the Institute of Comedy Research as they take us on a belly laugh ride through the current scientific theories about guffaws and giggles... 

Ursula Burns: The Dangerous Harpist

Ursula Burns: The Dangerous Harpist

The most dangerous harpist in the world accidentally made an album when she got lost looking for Lidl. ‘Oh no, not again,’ she exclaimed, in botheration, ‘this always happens!’ She had never intended to become a harpist... 

Let Big Brother Watch!

Let Big Brother Watch!

Satellite images now cover every inch of the world. Is this the invasion of privacy and major challenge to human rights that it is often argued to be, or is Big Brother really still quite tame? Putting aside legitimate concerns about some aspects of classified military use, is it fair to say that the majority of satellite images benefit our daily lives more than they intrude? Matjaz Vidmar, an up-and-coming researcher, votes for letting Big Brother watch... 

Cervical Cancer – You’re History!

Cervical Cancer – You’re History!

We now have great weapons against cervical cancer, but it still kills women every year. Cervical screening can detect the early effects of the virus which causes cervical cancer (HPV) before things develop further, and we can now vaccinate teenage girls against HPV infection so that they never even get the virus to begin with... 

The Myth of Universal Sign Language

The Myth of Universal Sign Language

Moving from the UK to an English-speaking country or another part of the UK? Think you’ll be able to communicate in sign language? Think again! There is no such thing as a universal sign language, and the sign language world is divided up along very different linguistic lines to that of spoken languages... 

Hands Off My Clubcard… Just Take My DNA!

Hands Off My Clubcard… Just Take My DNA!

Your Clubcard may say more about you than your DNA, so should it be considered more private? When it comes to understanding patterns in health and illness, examining our data may be even more powerful than examining our bodies... 

Language Lessons on the NHS?

Language Lessons on the NHS?

Research shows that learning languages helps us age healthily, even if we start learning them in later life. Being able to speak two languages can delay the onset of dementia symptoms by four to five years (more than any available drug!) and improve how well a patient recovers their mental abilities after a stroke... 

Sage Francis and B Dolan Present: Strange Speech, Famous Development

Sage Francis and B Dolan Present: Strange Speech, Famous Development

You can tell a lot about a show from its audience. At Saturday’s performance of Strange Speech, Famous Development, you could tell a lot from a single audience member: Scroobius Pip, nodding along and stroking his beard in the sixth row... 

Keep the Kids Out!

Keep the Kids Out!

When they go out at all, they terrorise our streets and are a nuisance in our neighbourhoods. Are children an environmental threat? Or should we be adapting our environments to suit them? How about closing our city streets so children can play out like they used to? PhD researcher Jenny Wood and community engagement charity PAS will encourage you to look again at our urban landscapes and what they say about children... 

Bringing Death Back to Life

Bringing Death Back to Life

Dying is a universal human activity, and it shows no sign of abating. Despite the impact of non-smoking campaigns and the value of various screening and early diagnosis initiatives, death will still be 100% fatal for every single one of us... 

Is Cancer Screening Harmful?

Is Cancer Screening Harmful?

We’re so used to hearing about the importance of regular cancer screening – catch it in its early stages while it can still be treated. But the reality is more complex and screening has real side effects... 

Bad Teeth = Bad Health

Bad Teeth = Bad Health

It’s no secret that a lackadaisical approach to dental care leads to fillings and gum disease. However, the latest research evidence suggests it could also cause serious illnesses like heart disease, cancer and diabetes... 

Choose Your Own Science Adventure

Choose Your Own Science Adventure

You’re an up-and-coming scientist. Your mission is to search for the truth about human psychology… and make the truth interesting enough that people want to read about it. Your answer needs to be right, but more importantly needs to be published... 

Exercise is Bad for You

Exercise is Bad for You

Often described as a 'Polypill' against a variety of illnesses and diseases, is exercise really the elixir for health? Can exercise prematurely wear out your joints? Does excessive training increase the risk of coughs and colds? Does prolonged exercise impair your heart’s function? Can exercise lead to addictive behaviour? It’s suggested that, in a lifetime, we have a fixed number of heartbeats; does increasing our heart rate through exercise shorten our lifespan? Participate in a discussion with life scientist Derek Ball about whether exercise is as good for you as we are led to believe. 

Vive La Variété

Vive La Variété

Vaudeville, comedy and cabaret are all on the menu in a five-star feast of first-rate fun. Vive La Variété gathers performers from all around the world to create a dazzling spectacle that is guaranteed to entertain and never fails to please... 

Gary Dunn’s Family Feast

Gary Dunn’s Family Feast

Gary Dunn comes to the Fringe with his one-man (one chicken) magic show! Sixty minutes of family fun and some great magic from Scotland’s No 1 comedy magician and his trusty sidekick, Colin the Mind Reading Chicken... 

Mental Health is... Mental!

Mental Health is... Mental!

Leading psychiatrist Stephen Lawrie has heard enough talk about mental health stigma. Campaigns to make it okay to speak out are great, but they will struggle to get anywhere unless they recognise that mental health really is mental! And physical, at the same time! No other area of medicine is so controversial, because no other area of medicine is so complicated... 

Bruce Fummey's Alba: Scotland the Origins

Bruce Fummey's Alba: Scotland the Origins

Laughter with a kilt on. Award-winning stand-up Bruce Fummey follows last year’s top selling show A History of Scotland with another historical romp. If you like a laugh and you want to know how Scotland came to be then this is the show for you... 

Michelle McManus: Pop Goes the Idol

Michelle McManus: Pop Goes the Idol

Back by popular demand, presenter and singer Michelle’s brand new show, co-written with Bruce Devlin, tells the next instalment in the Glasgow based life of a glittering global megastar... 

The Fantastical Return of Greyfriar’s Bobby

The Fantastical Return of Greyfriar’s Bobby

When Bex is told she has to visit her uncle Angus in Edinburgh, she is not best pleased. Little does she know of the mystery waiting for her there, the very unique friends she will make and the very special little dog who will take her on an adventure that she will never forget... 

LOLympics Live!

LOLympics Live!

Back at the Fringe for its fifth year, LOLympics is an international comedy showcase. Based loosely on the Olympic games, comedians from all over the world compete for gold medals, and LOLympic glory... 

Gavin Webster's 11 O'Clock Bill

Gavin Webster's 11 O'Clock Bill

It's past 11 o'clock so it's time for the high-octane crash, bang, wallop Fringe comedians to take us to midnight with anarchic jokes, anecdotes, spoonerisms and songs. There's no touching feel-good true stories or uplifting tales... 

Edinburgh Should Ban Students

Edinburgh Should Ban Students

What have students ever done for us? Surely Edinburgh would be a better city without them? Swathes of the city would be habitable again for families, noise complaints would slump, and traffic cones could rest easy... 

Computers Are Only For Geeks

Computers Are Only For Geeks

What do you imagine when someone mentions they work with computers or in IT? Do you immediately think of a slightly nerdy man hunched over a keyboard in a darkened basement room, impervious to the rest of the world? Many people would think this... 

What If Lance Armstrong Had The Right Idea?

What If Lance Armstrong Had The Right Idea?

Every four years we marvel at the feats of human endeavour at the Olympic Games, but imagine a world where doping was allowed. How fast, higher and stronger could human performance attain? This talk explores what the limits of human performance could be with the aid of a range of doping agents, whether we would want to see what a human could achieve, and the ethical implications that such an approach could raise. 

The Great British Brain Off

The Great British Brain Off

Do you feel like your brain is half-baked? Or that your mental faculties are going off the boil? Join 'head' chef Dr Alan Gow in the Great British Brain Off to consider the recipe for the perfect brain, and what you can do if you feel your own grey matter needs some extra spice... 

Abnormally Funny People

Abnormally Funny People

Abnormally Funny People showcases some of the best and brightest comedians living with disabilities on the circuit, oh and a token “normal”. It’s a nice idea and it works well, it could fall into mawkishness but never does, it’s a series of solid acts tied together by a theme... 

Back To The Statistical Future!

Back To The Statistical Future!

How different is Scotland in 2015, to Scotland in 1835? As good education is increasingly costly and inaccessible to the poor, are we seeing our modern 'lords and gentlemen' believing we will be 'more obedient and dutiful, were [we] more ignorant, and had no education'? Might our poor potentially be 'corrupted, by being taught to read and write'? Might we be returning to a time when libraries are only sustained by subscriptions? Join us for a whistle stop hover-board ride through the bizarre parallels between modern Scotland and the 'New' Statistical Accounts of Scotland (1834-1845). 

Hug A Thug

Hug A Thug

Do you think the criminal justice system is a soft touch? Do you think that prisons make life too easy for criminals? Would you like to bring back hanging? Then this show is for you! During the show you will hear the stories of prisoners and victims, many of whom committed crimes from a young age... 

Jamie Kilstein: Sober Song Rants and a Cat Story

Jamie Kilstein: Sober Song Rants and a Cat Story

Musical comedian Jamie Kilstein has an utterly charming stage presence. Approaching the mic, his eyes flit distractedly about the upper reaches of the Spiegeltent in St Andrew Square... 

The War On Drugs Is Harmful

The War On Drugs Is Harmful

President Nixon declared war on public enemy number one in 1971. By 1994, drug laws resulted in the incarceration of one million Americans each year. The US now spends $50 billion annually on the war on drugs, mainly focussed on reducing supply – often through military aid... 

Alas, Poor Darwin...?

Alas, Poor Darwin...?

Alas, Poor Darwin…? may be officially listed as a ‘spoken word’ event, but don’t let that make you think it’s a poetry show. No, this is a biology and psychology lecture delivered by two academics, Lewis Dean and Kate Cross, on the subject of evolutionary theory... 

The Cocaine Conspiracy

The Cocaine Conspiracy

The cocaine trade has enormous social and ecological consequences on both global and local scales. The production of cocaine involves large scale deforestation and pollution as a result of the discarding of the reagents used to process from leaf to final product... 

Swords Into Ploughshares

Swords Into Ploughshares

Transforming arms into art. How far can dangerous memories, toxic religion, intractable conflicts and gender violence be transformed? Professor Jolyon Mitchell (the University of Edinburgh and former BBC World Service Journalist and Producer) and Dr Lesley Orr (the University of Edinburgh and the Iona Community) investigate how different media and arts can be used to build peace... 

Skating On Thin Ice

Skating On Thin Ice

Why don't we just let the Arctic melt? What will the Arctic look like in 50 years’ time? Will your children be the last generation to learn that the Arctic seas are covered by ice all year round? Why are governments across the world so interested in what is happening up North? The Arctic climate is warming more quickly than anywhere else on the planet... 

Wild, Scottish And Free

Wild, Scottish And Free

A culinary conundrum. Six-thousand years of farming and improving crops and livestock and we still pay a premium for wild food. Our neighbours in Scandinavia are developing a new Nordic cuisine based on local, seasonal and native ingredients... 

The Hidden World Of Functional Disorders

The Hidden World Of Functional Disorders

How would you feel if you were paralysed or had blackouts, only to be told you were imagining it, hysterical, or making it up? This is still the experience of some patients with Functional Neurological Disorder (FND), a very real but misunderstood condition that affects 15% of UK neurology outpatients... 

Whose Face Is It Anyway?

Whose Face Is It Anyway?

Surgery to change facial appearance is increasingly common, for both reconstructive and cosmetic reasons. Surgical advances allow us to perform previously impossible operations, including face transplants... 

Not So Native Now

Not So Native Now

Not So Native Now is a talk about multilingualism as part of the Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas, engaging and inviting the audience to consider our preconceptions about bilingualism and language learning alongside new findings from leading researchers... 

Elvis McGonagall: Countrybile

Elvis McGonagall: Countrybile

Countrybile – armed with a blunderbuss, a bottle of Scotch and his rabid wit, stand-up poet Elvis McGonagall emerges from his godforsaken rural idyll at the Graceland Caravan Park to take aim at this septic isle... 

Fashion And The Selfie Culture

Fashion And The Selfie Culture

Mal Burkinshaw, Programme Director of Fashion at Edinburgh College of Art and Director of the Diversity Network discusses and debates the role that fashion plays in stereotyping ideals of beauty – when are we ever good enough? With the rise of the me, me, me selfie culture – why do we succumb to pressure to present an image of ourselves to the world that is not the image we see in the mirror, or the image beneath the skin? This show asks whether empathy can ever change the strict doctrines of current beauty codes. 

Gunge! A Show With Gunge in It

Gunge! A Show With Gunge in It

Afternoons are dead boring now, everyone knows that, even proper stupid idiots. So, why not come to this game show what Lee Kyle is hosting? It is for children but also for adults if they are stupid... 

Let’s Turn On the Smart Light

Let’s Turn On the Smart Light

How can light bulbs be smart? Could LED light bulbs really be used for wireless data communication? Here at the Li-Fi Centre at the University of Edinburgh, we are developing the electronics to make this happen... 

Women! Science is Still Not for You!

Women! Science is Still Not for You!

The UK desperately needs more scientists and engineers, yet highly qualified, talented and ambitious women are still deserting science. Reasons such as unconscious bias and lack of confidence are only the tip of the iceberg... 

Stop Brushing Your Teeth!

Stop Brushing Your Teeth!

The common phrase 'an apple a day, keeps the doctor away' sounds quite sensible in promoting healthy living, doesn’t it? However, a quick internet search suggests that eating an apple a day will: keep the doctor away if you’re a woman, over 50; not keep the doctor away; send you running to the dentist... 

Scotland In Six Swallies

Scotland In Six Swallies

A river of drink runs through Scotland’s history – plague, murder, temperance and social reform are drenched in six iconic drinks (swallies, as the locals say). Alcohol is involved... 

Cervical Cancer – You’re History!

Cervical Cancer – You’re History!

Cervical cancer only affects women but is caused by a virus (HPV) very common in both sexes. HPV causes cervical cancer if not cleared by the immune system. We now have great weapons against cervical cancer but it still kills women every year... 

GM Bacteria Could Save Your Life!

GM Bacteria Could Save Your Life!

GM Bacteria? Noooo! But what if I told you that GM Salmonella might save your life one day? Most people remember Salmonella because of the controversy with eggs, and many know that Salmonella can cause food poisoning... 

Hearing Loss Or Deaf Gain?

Hearing Loss Or Deaf Gain?

Imagine we are creating an encyclopaedia for extraterrestrials. An argument breaks out over how we describe deaf people: some say hearing loss and others say it's deaf gain. Help us to decide! In this engaging debate presenters will describe arguments from each side, drawing from research in the field of deaf studies... 

Butterfly Rammy

Butterfly Rammy

A cabaret of the art and ideas of Scotland's political awakening. In the last two years a rag-tag band of activists, artists, thinkers and citizens took the stage and changed how Scotland thought about itself... 

Vive La Variété

Vive La Variété

A must-see cocktail of the best in sensational cabaret, comedy, burlesque and musical entertainment. Vive La Variété takes the best of the Fringe and adds a pinch of secret magic to create a stunning new show every night... 

Soak Up The Sun And To Hell With Skin Cancer!

Soak Up The Sun And To Hell With Skin Cancer!

We are all advised to take care in the sun, because it causes skin cancer, but is it really bad for us? Following on from his TED talk and appearance on Trust Me, I’m a Doctor, Edinburgh dermatologist Richard Weller sheds some light on how the health benefits of sunlight may well outweigh its risks... 

Mark Thompson’s Space Cadets Training Academy

Mark Thompson’s Space Cadets Training Academy

Mark Thompson, well known as a TV astronomer and author, has joined the ranks of Space Command to help recruit some new space cadets. This show is ideal for kids aged between five and eight, and is based on aspects of the science curriculum for key stages one and two... 

Martin ‘Bigpig’ Mor’s Funny Stuff for Happy People

Martin ‘Bigpig’ Mor’s Funny Stuff for Happy People

Kids! Do you need somewhere to take your adults without them getting bored and going in a huff? Bring them to Funny Stuff for Happy People, where the adults can have just as good a time as the kids... 

Michelle McManus: Reloaded

Michelle McManus: Reloaded

Presenter, columnist and singer Michelle brings a new Reloaded one-woman show to the Festival. Co-written with comedian Bruce Devlin it is an upfront take on life since winning Pop Idol along with some of her all-time favourite songs... 

Funny for a Grrrl

Funny for a Grrrl

Four fantastic comediennes on one amazing show! We’ve selected the funniest women we could find at the Fringe, and brought them together for an afternoon of comedy you’ll never forget! 

Brendon Burns and Colt Cabana Sit in a F*cking Yurt at 11pm and Provide Comedy and Commentary to Bad Wrestling Matches

Brendon Burns and Colt Cabana Sit in a F*cking Yurt at 11pm and Provide Comedy and Commentary to Bad Wrestling Matches

Pretty self-explanatory, really. They're back... Only in Edinburgh baby! The world's number one indie wrestler meets the world's number eight cult comedian. Brendon Burns and Colt Cabana (BBC 1's Insane Fight Club) return... 

Bruce Fummey: A History of Scotland

Bruce Fummey: A History of Scotland

Award-winning comic Bruce Fummey, triumphantly returns telling the history of Scotland. Previously acclaimed Fringe shows are brought together in one hilarious Scottish history revue... 

The Super Serious Show

The Super Serious Show

Hailed by L.A. Weekly as ‘the future of live comedy’, The Super Serious Show is a Los Angeles based mash-up live comedy show. An immersive experience created by CleftClips, the show exposes audiences to emerging and experimental performers alongside well-known headliners... 

Set List: Stand-Up Without a Net

Set List: Stand-Up Without a Net

In Set List, spontaneity is the name of the game; a selection of comics perform completely improvised sets in front of your eyes, with nothing to guide them but key phrases which are projected onto screens at the side of the stage... 

Is Your Marmite Watching You?

Is Your Marmite Watching You?

The point of a thought-experiment is to provide a way of exploring the consequences of an idea, not through a metaphorical prism, but through a literal imagining of what might happen as a result of something... 

Hug a Thug

Hug a Thug

Do you think the criminal justice system is a soft touch? Do you think that prisons make life too easy for criminals? Would you like to bring back hanging? Then this is for you! Through poetry and song, you will hear the stories of prisoners and victims, many of whom committed crimes from a young age... 

We’d Eat GM Meat: Would You?

We’d Eat GM Meat: Would You?

Would you eat bacon from a lab designed pig? Is GM meat really a solution to future food shortages? Debates about genetically modifying our food raise many concerns. Some are about the methods used... 

Prescriptions for Sunbeds?

Prescriptions for Sunbeds?

Everyone knows that sunbathing is the fastest way to skin cancer ... but are we missing something? We have known for years about the skin cancer risk, but how much does this really matter? Should we risk cancer (and wrinkles and age spots) to have healthier hearts and minds? Might sunlight deprivation explain the notoriously poor health of Scotland, the sick nation of Europe? Join Dr Richard Weller, a dermatologist at the University of Edinburgh, to find out how close we are to getting prescriptions for sunbeds, and decide whether you’d want one. 

Sex-Selective Abortions: Behind the Headlines

Sex-Selective Abortions: Behind the Headlines

The selective abortion of female babies is a high-profile reason for why some countries have more men than women. But do we know the real reasons why it happens, or is all our knowledge from sensationalist newspaper headlines? The ratio of men to women actually varies greatly between countries... 

Keep the Kids Out!

Keep the Kids Out!

A rare treat of the Fringe is being able to speak your mind in a venue without having the talent shout you down. The Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas offers just such an opportunity every afternoon in St Andrews Square, with a series of discussions around diverse and wildly divergent topics... 

Are We Wasting Your Data?

Are We Wasting Your Data?

Medical science has advanced thanks to what we’ve learnt from patients’ data. But are overprotective data laws hampering progress? Will doctors continue to make the same mistakes through ignorance, when better use of patients’ data could have prevented them? Most patients are surprised at the hurdles researchers have to negotiate to start research that would benefit patients - ironically, all in the name of protecting patients! Have we got the balance right? Come along and share ideas to stop the waste... 

I Know What You Ate Last Summer

I Know What You Ate Last Summer

Brandishing a Tesco clubcard, Dr Mhairi Aitken warns us that a loyalty card can say a lot about you. Your dietary preferences, alcohol consumption even fitness levels can be, and indeed are, tracked by supermarkets and other corporations to build personal profiles of consumers... 

What Skeletons Are in Your Closet?

What Skeletons Are in Your Closet?

The pioneering Statistical Accounts of Scotland systematically described 18th-century Scotland and its people, capturing glimpses of the daily lives of those forgotten by the history books in the process: Women of bad fame in Inverness; tenant farmers in Sandwick prohibited from reporting their rental agreements; pauper lunatics in Morningside… If we created a modern account how would we capture the details of daily life for our own outsiders? Who would record these lives, what would we ask and what might it reveal to historians of the future? With Nicola Osborne and Helen Aiton (EDINA). 

Brain Training on Trial

Brain Training on Trial

Spent your hard-earned cash on games that promise to protect your brain? Still forgetting why you went into that room? Then come and put brain training on trial. Be our prosecution, defence and jury as we examine the claims that brain training games protect your brain... 

Breed Bilingual!

Breed Bilingual!

We may not all read the Daily Mail, but many Brits still think that learning a second language is unnecessary. When it comes to young children, some of us even think it’s damaging... 

Brendon Burns and Colt Cabana Sit in a 150 Seater at 10pm and Provide the Commentary to Bad Wrestling Matches

Brendon Burns and Colt Cabana Sit in a 150 Seater at 10pm and Provide the Commentary to Bad Wrestling Matches

There’s no way to review this show without first admitting that the title does half the job.Well, the venue didn’t quite meet the 150 capacity but aside from that this show was exactly what it was billed to be... 

Women! Science Is Not for You!

Women! Science Is Not for You!

Why are women deserting sciences in droves? Is it unconscious bias, a lack of aspiration, lack of confidence - or just lack of ability? Are we failing our daughters, or is this just the way things are? With females making up half of the population, a lot of science, maths and engineering talent is going to waste... 

Bright Club: Scotland’s Fringe

Bright Club: Scotland’s Fringe

We’re straight from the research field to the Fringe! Bright Club is the freshest thing in stand-up - an academic comedy cocktail synthesised for your entertainment and enlightenment... 

Antidepressants Are Not Overprescribed!

Antidepressants Are Not Overprescribed!

Come gather in the yurt at the Stand in the Square for another in the series of The Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas. The university-sponsored events present a range of talks on various topics over the course of the month... 

The Hidden World of Functional Disorders

The Hidden World of Functional Disorders

How would you feel if you were paralysed or had blackouts, only to be told you were imagining it or, worse still, making it up? This is still the experience of some patients with Functional Neurological Disorder (FND), a very real but misunderstood condition that affects 15% of UK neurology outpatients... 

Michelle McManus’ Reality: The Musical

Michelle McManus’ Reality: The Musical

Michelle McManus returns to the Festival, after her sell-out show last year which received five-star reviews across the board. Since winning Pop Idol a decade ago Michelle has gone on to carve a career on screen, radio and the stage... 

Are Designer Babies a Slippery Slope?

Are Designer Babies a Slippery Slope?

Have you ever thought about what having children might mean in the future? What if you could design your own baby? Would you design your baby to have the intelligence of Stephen Hawking and the body (but not the temper) of Naomi Campbell? What features would you include in the design of your baby? Should we design babies free from genetic disorders? Perhaps you find the idea abhorrent? Join Dr Gary Kerr (University of Edinburgh) and tell us what you think the future of designer babies should look like. 

The Trial of Chimpanzee Jack

The Trial of Chimpanzee Jack

You are summoned for jury service. Jack and his gang killed a member of another gang. He is now on trial for murder. But this trial has a difference - Jack is a chimpanzee. As a chimp, does Jack understand that others are like him? Can he predict what will happen when he attacks another chimp? Does he have morals? As members of the jury, you will hear the arguments from both sides, quiz the expert witnesses and help decide: can a chimp do human wrongs? Created by Lewis Dean (University of St Andrews)... 

Robert Newman's New Theory of Evolution

Robert Newman's New Theory of Evolution

As a comedian, Robert Newman seems somewhat unqualified to espouse a new theory of evolution, especially a theory that is rejected by most scientists. His idea is that the evolutionary progress of a species demands co-operation within that species and that the survival of the fittest theory is plain wrong... 

Is Scottish Independence Bad for Your Health?

Is Scottish Independence Bad for Your Health?

Scotland is the ‘sick man of Europe’. Would independence change this? Polls show that access to quality healthcare is a key concern in the independence debate. Would we be better off with an independent health service, or should we put up with the limitations of the current devolved system? And what about health research? Scotland’s population is an excellent ‘living lab’... 

Speech Sucks: The Future Signs

Speech Sucks: The Future Signs

In all the noise and bustle of Edinburgh during August, this was a refreshing and quiet event. The Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas regularly puts on open debates headed by university professors... 

Alcohol Costs Too Much!

Alcohol Costs Too Much!

Is minimum alcohol pricing making our health worse? Dr Angus Bancroft (University of Edinburgh) reckons so. By treating us like idiots, policymakers turn us into them. Nannying us stops us taking responsibility for ourselves - we take bad risks and get into trouble... 

The Internet: A Human Right?

The Internet: A Human Right?

Professor Michael Fourman of the University of Edinburgh hosted this event as part of the Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas, a series of seminars and lectures taking place during the Fringe with the intention of giving audiences a chance to engage with topics normally confined to more academic settings... 

The Alternative Comedy Memorial Society

The Alternative Comedy Memorial Society

To say that Alternative Comedy Memorial Society is a cult phenomenon is an understatement… and to call it a showcase night would be wildly simplifying the interactive, experimental and anarchic event... 

In Pursuit of Beauty

In Pursuit of Beauty

Do you think fashion should be socially responsible? Do you believe the industry should do more to communicate healthier and diverse beauty ideals? The Edinburgh College of Art and All Walks Diversity Network believe the fashion industry can be beautiful without being beastly... 

Benefit Scrounger - or Unemployed Worker?

Benefit Scrounger - or Unemployed Worker?

Politicians tell us that cutting benefits will motivate the unemployed to find work. They’re wrong – few unemployed people lack motivation. For the majority, unemployment is unpleasant, regardless of how much money the state gives them... 

Should Capitalism be Criminal?

Should Capitalism be Criminal?

Should Capitalism Be Criminal? was the first discussion in a series entitled Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas, which is essentially a leftie version of Question Time, set in a yurt in St Andrew Square... 

Cocaine: Between White Lines

Cocaine: Between White Lines

Scotland has the highest per-head consumption of cocaine on the planet, and it damages more than just our health. The inhabitants of wealthy nations pay a high price for their drug consumption, but it‘s nowhere near high enough... 

Funny For A Grrrl

Funny For A Grrrl

Four fantastic comediennes on one amazing show! We’ve selected the funniest women we could find at the festival and brought them together for an afternoon of comedy you’ll never forget! ‘An amazing evening of the most hilarious women I've seen in a very long time... 

Funny Stuff For Happy People

Funny Stuff For Happy People

Kids! Do you need somewhere to take your adults without them getting bored and going in a huff? Bring them to Funny Stuff For Happy People, an hour of comedy, circus, storytelling, poetry and stupid science... 

All Back to Bowie’s

All Back to Bowie’s

David Bowie said ‘Scotland, stay with us’. At the Fringe, a group of Scottish artists take him up on his kind invitation. So pull up a futon, it’s all back to Bowie’s for an #indyref mix of politics, poetry, polemic and pop... 

Falafel, Houmous and Baba Ganoush

Falafel, Houmous and Baba Ganoush

The Fringe debut performance from Egyptian stand-up comedy troupe and platform Al Hezb El Comedy. Falafel, an Egyptian-American raised comedian will be joined by Houmous, the first white Sudanese stand-up comedian in the world and Baba Ganoush, an Egyptian-Iraqi Londoner who will be returning to the Fringe for his fifth year... 

Vive le Cabaret

Vive le Cabaret

Now in its fifth glorious year, Vive le Cabaret guarantees the biggest laughs, the hottest burlesque and the most sensational circus, speciality and musical performers of any variety show on the Fringe...