26 July 2016

The Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society is delighted to announce the 2016 Fringe Central Welcome Address will be delivered by award-winning comedian Sam Wills, creator and star of The Boy With Tape On His Face, on Friday 05 August at 1pm at Fringe Central @ Infirmary Street.

The Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society is delighted to announce the 2016 Fringe Central Welcome Address will be delivered by award-winning comedian Sam Wills, creator and star of The Boy With Tape On His Face, on Friday 05 August at 1pm at Fringe Central @ Infirmary Street.

The Fringe Central Opening Address is the official welcome to Fringe participants, introducing them to Fringe Central’s services and the extensive range of professional development events on offer to them throughout August. The event was created to inspire participants to make the best use of the Fringe by getting them to think about the wider perspective and how their experience at the Fringe will impact on them and their work in the future.

Sam began his comedy career as a street performer in New Zealand. He developed the character of The Boy With Tape On His Face following a chance encounter with a piece of duct tape at an Auckland comedy club in 2005. Five years later The Boy With Tape On His Face made his Fringe debut at the 2010 Edinburgh Festival Fringe, and was an instant hit, delighting audiences with his charming blend of mime, quirky props and audience participation. Since his first appearance at the Fringe, Sam has continued performing around the world appearing on The Royal Variety Performance (2011) and most recently on US talent show America’s Got Talent (2016).

Shona McCarthy, Chief Executive of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society, said:
“I am really looking forward to hearing Sam Wills deliver this year’s Fringe Central Welcome Address. The Boy With Tape On His Face has become an international success story and Sam has delighted audiences around the world, and of course here in Edinburgh, with his shows. I am sure that he will be an inspiration to participants, sharing experiences from throughout his career and his previous visits to the Fringe.”

“The Fringe Central Welcome Address has been created to encourage all Fringe participants to feel at home at Fringe Central and to introduce them to the Fringe Central Events Programme which takes place throughout the festival and is absolutely free to all Fringe participants. It really is their home-away-from-home and this year we have 106 free events taking place which will develop their performance skills, tackle topical issues, expand their networks and advance their careers. We really want participants to take advantage of all Fringe Central has to offer and make the very most of their time at the Fringe.”

Sam Wills said:
“I was honoured to receive the invitation to deliver the Fringe Central Welcome Address this year. I have been a participant of the Fringe for many years and in many guises and it is a festival that is close to my heart. The Fringe gives participants a unique opportunity to hone their craft and try new things, to meet other performers from all over the world and to share their experiences. I am looking forward to sharing some of my own stories with performers participating in this year’s Fringe.”

Fringe Central is operated by the Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society and is exclusively for participants, media and arts industry professionals taking part in the Fringe. Centrally located at the Edinburgh Centre for Carbon Innovation on Infirmary Street, the centre provides internet access, a cafe, meeting rooms, and rehearsal spaces. Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society staff will also be based at Fringe Central to give support and advice on participants marketing and media campaigns and to assist participants in making the best use of the development opportunities on offer. All Fringe Central events are free for registered Fringe participants.


Notes to Editors

For further information, or if you would like a copy of the Fringe Central Events Programme, please contact the Fringe Media Office by email: media@edfringe.com or tel: +44 (0)131 240 1919.

The Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society, the charity that underpins the Edinburgh Festival Fringe was established in 1958, eleven years after the birth of the Fringe when the first performers turned up uninvited to perform at the Edinburgh International Festival. The Fringe is an open access festival – any artist or company can take part regardless of their experience or success and the festival is not programmed or run by an artistic director or any selection body. As a registered charity, the Fringe Society exists to support all participants, industry professionals, media and audience members who attend the Fringe from all around the world, and to produce accurate and up-to-date information and ticketing for audiences, and to raise the profile of the festival as a whole.

Fringe Central@Infirmary Street, Edinburgh Centre for Carbon Innovation, High School Yards, Edinburgh EH1 1LZ
Fringe Central will be open from 10:00 – 20:00, 01 – 29 August 2016.
The 2016 Edinburgh Festival Fringe will run from 05 – 29 August.
For more information on the Edinburgh Festival Fringe please visit www.edfringe.com