Hastings Fringe Festival is the brainchild of Artistic Director, Heather Alexander. Francis Saunders recently had the chance to catch up with her.

The festival normally runs for a month in thirteen different venues through Hastings and is a great platform for new playwrights, singers, musicians and a wide array of performers to bring their talents to audiences in Hastings. This year, it has had to scale back slightly due to the pandemic and will take place in just one venue: The Stables Theatre. 

Heather explained how the fringe came to pass. She had written a two-hander play, Kiss Off, that she wanted to try out and contacted the Stables who agreed to let her put it on. She found other writers who, like her, wanted to show their work, and the first Fringe Festival was born.  That festival, in 2015, lasted a week. It was such a success that the rest is history – each year the festival has grown and gone from strength to strength. 

Now in its sixth year, the Fringe will run from 12th to 17th July with a schedule that includes award-winning plays. Heather says: “It’s fantastic to be welcoming innovative and top-quality live performance back to the Hastings community. This is a great line-up with something for everyone.”

The programme includes:

• Flanders & Swann and Tom Lehrer 
12th July, 7.30pm
An evening of song, silliness, and glorious mud! Performed by Steve Scott with John Bruzon at the piano. 

• Commando: The Radio Play
13th July, 7.30pm

By Abby Falvo. Experience the 1985 Schwarzenegger blockbuster as you’ve never heard it before!

• Chemistry
14th July, 7.00pm

By Sam Chittenden. Set in a future world in which people are no longer allowed to touch. “What if we’ve lost something really fundamental?”

• Quintessence
14th July, 9.00pm

An original sci-fi storytelling inspired by Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. Written and performed by Emily Carding.

• Wating for Hamlet
15th July, 7.30pm

A fool who knows he’s a fool, and a fool who doesn’t. A new comedy starring Nicholas Collett and Tim Marriott.

• The Tragedy of Dorian Gray
16th July, 7.30pm

A darkly humorous reimagining of Oscar Wilde’s classic tale by Blue Devil Productions.

• An Enchanted Evening of Song
17th July, 7.30pm
Join Will Allenby, star of BBC Radio’s Friday Night is Music Night for an evening of his favourite music with some very special guests. 

Tickets are available from the Stables Box Office by calling 01424 423221.
Box Office open 10.30am to 1.00pm, Monday to Saturday. 

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