29 August 2016

The Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society has announced that by Monday afternoon, with hundreds of performances still to take place, an estimated 2,475,143 tickets had been issued for shows across Scotland’s capital. The number of tickets issued reflects a 7.7% increase in comparison to tickets issued by the same point last year. 

This year marked Shona McCarthy’s first Fringe as Chief Executive of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society.

Shona McCarthy said:

“In 2016, the Edinburgh Festival Fringe has once again been a spectacular success, welcoming performers and audiences from across the globe, and issuing an estimated 2,475,143 tickets. We hope that all those who attended ticketed shows, as well as the thousands of people who attended the 643 free shows in the programme, truly enjoyed their Fringe experience.

“The Fringe plays an essential role in the global arts community, providing a platform for artists from around the UK and the rest of the world to showcase their work and make new connections. With 48 countries represented in this year’s programme, the breadth and diversity of talent on offer has been astounding.

“We are now looking forward to our 70

th anniversary celebrations in 2017 and hope that as many people as possible will join us to mark this fantastic milestone in the history of Edinburgh’s festivals.”

Sir Tim O’Shea, Fringe Society Chair added:

“On behalf of the audiences from home and abroad who enjoyed this year’s Fringe, I would like to thank the thousands of participants that have worked so hard to entertain and inspire us. The Fringe would not be possible without the courage, creativity and sheer hard work of the festival’s participants, and for that we are very grateful.”

Fiona Hyslop, Cabinet Secretary for Culture, Tourism and External Affairs said:

“This has been another excellent year for the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Every year the Fringe evolves, providing new opportunities for Scottish, UK and international artists to take the next step in their careers. The Fringe, which benefitted from £590,000 of Scottish Government Expo funding, demonstrates the very best of what Scotland has to offer, giving visitors from around the world truly unique experiences, against the spectacular backdrop that Edinburgh provides.” 

In 2016 new initiatives from the Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society included the launch of a new mobile app, developed in partnership with Glasgow based, BAFTA-award winning digital design and development company, Screenmedia. The Fringe App, available on Android and iOS devices, helped thousands of festival-goers to navigate their way through the Fringe this August. Fringe App users were able to browse shows, plot their routes and share their festival diaries with friends. The app also enabled users to find a bargain, displaying shows with tickets on offer at the Virgin Money Half Price Hut.

The Fringe Society also unveiled a new strategic partnership with Skyscanner, helping audiences and artists attending the Fringe to plan their travel to and from Edinburgh.

Fringe Central, the Society’s centre for performing companies, venues, media and arts industry professionals attending the Fringe, delivered its largest ever programme of professional development events for Fringe participants. 106 free events covered a variety of topics including international touring, fundraising, and skills development. The Fringe Central Welcome Address was delivered by award-winning comedian Sam Wills, creator and star of The Boy With Tape On His Face. Based at the Edinburgh Centre for Carbon Innovation for the first time this year, Fringe Central was also the winner of the Spirit of Inclusion award, part of the Accessible Edinburgh Festival Awards, set up by disabled access review website, Euan’s Guide.

Access has been a key topic of discussion at this year’s Fringe. Fringe Central hosted a series of events entitled Breaking Down Barriers,exploring accessibility, equalities and diversity at the Fringe, and in the wider performing arts sector. The Fringe Society is currently working towards becoming an accredited Attitude Champion with deaf and disability charity Attitude is Everything, and recently launched a free online access training resource, designed to enable anyone working for the Fringe Society and the wider Fringe to improve the experiences of disabled audience sand participants.

Notes to Editors

For more information, please contact the Fringe Media Office
[email protected] / +44 (0)131 240 1919

The 2016 Edinburgh Festival Fringe dates were 05 - 29 August.

2016 Fringe Award Winners

Allen Wright Award
Winner: Rebecca Monks
Special Commendation: Ben Williams
Special Commendation: Alice Saville

Amnesty Freedom of Expression Award
Winner: Glasgow Girls –  Pachamama Productions, National Theatre of Scotland and Regular Music (Assembly)

Amused Moose Comedy Award
Winner: Larry Dean: Farcissist – Chambers Touring Ltd (Pleasance)

The Asian Arts Awards
Best Production: 
Snap – Gruejarm Production – Korean Season presented by AtoBiz Ltd (Assembly)

Best Director:
4D Cinema – Mamoru Iriguchi (Summerhall)

Best Comedy:
Chef: Come Dine With Us! – Persona Inc – Korean Season presented by AtoBiz Ltd (Assembly)

Brighton Fringe Award for Excellence in association with Komedia Brighton
Winner: We are Ian – In Bed With My Brother/the Pleasance (Pleasance)

The Broadway Baby Bobby Award
Ten Storey Love Song – Middle Child (Pleasance)
The Interference – Pepperdine University (USA) (C venues)

Carol Tambor Best of Edinburgh Award
Winner: Life According to Saki – Atticist (C venues)

Dave’s Funniest Joke of the Fringe
Winner: Masai Graham – Aaaaah! It's 101 Clean Jokes in 30 Minutes – Free Show – Masai Graham (Laughing Horse)

Edinburgh Comedy Poster Awards
Panel Prize: Lou Sanders: What's That Lady Doing? – Berk's Nest and the Pleasance (Pleasance)
Audience Award: Desiree Burch: This is Evolution – Desiree Burch / Heroes (PWYW) (Heroes)

Euan’s Guide Accessible Edinburgh Festival Awards
Spirit of Inclusion Winner: Fringe Central@Infirmary Street
Small Venue Winner: Grassmarket Community Project
Highly Commended: Dance Base

2016 Fringe Sustainable Practice Award
Winner: Are We Stronger Than Winston? –VOU Fiji Dance (Greenside)

Holden Street Theatres Award
Scorch – Prime Cut Productions (Summerhall)
Angel by Henry Naylor – Pipeline Productions (Gilded Balloon)

The lastminute.com Edinburgh Comedy Awards
Best Comedy Show: Richard Gadd: Monkey See Monkey Do – Berk's Nest/Soho Theatre/PBH's Free Fringe/United Agents (Banshee Labyrinth)
Best Newcomer: Scott Gibson: Life After Death – Dead Sheep Comedy/Gilded Balloon – (Gilded Balloon)
Panel Prize: Iraq Out & Loud: Reading the Chilcot Report in Full – Omid Djalili, Bob Slayer, Performers, Writers and You! (Heroes)

The Malcom Hardee Awards
Prize for Comic Originality: Twonkey’s Mumbo Jumbo Hotel – Paul Vickers (Sweet Venues)
Cunning Stunt Award: Molotov Cocktail Party – Becky Fury / PBH’s Free Fringe (Sabor)
Most Likely To Make A Million Quid: Come Look at the Baby – Thorium Theatre (Just The Tonic)

The Scottish Arts Club Award for Best Scottish Play
Winner: Expensive Shit – Adura Onashile, Scottish Theatre Producers in association with Traverse Theatre (Traverse Theatre)

The Scotsman Fringe First Awards
Winners – week one
Angel by Henry Naylor – Pipeline Productions (Gilded Balloon)
Counting Sheep – Lemon Bucket Orkestra in association with Aurora Nova (Summerhall)
Expensive Shit – Adura Onashile, Scottish Theatre Producers in association with Traverse Theatre (Traverse Theatre)
Heads Up – Kieran Hurley with Show And Tell (Summerhall)
The Interference – Pepperdine University (USA) (C venues)
World Without Us – Ontroerend Goed, Theatre Royal Plymouth, Vooruit, Richard Jordan Productions, Summerhall (Summerhall)

Winners – week two
Daffodils (A Play With Songs) – Bullet Heart Club (Traverse Theatre)
Fabric – Robin Rayner, TREMers & The Marlowe Theatre (Underbelly)
Faslane – Jenna Watt in association with Showroom and Contact (Summerhall)
Mark Thomas: The Red Shed – Lakin McCarthy in association with West Yorkshire Playhouse (Traverse Theatre)
Tank – Breach (Pleasance)
Two Man Show – RashDash (Summerhall)
Us / Them – BRONKS, Big in Belgium, Richard Jordan, Theatre Royal Plymouth (Summerhall)

Winners – week three
One Hundred Homes –Yinka Kuitenbrouwer, Big in Belgium, Richard Jordan, Theatre Royal Plymouth (Summerhall)
Letters to Windsor House – Sh!t Theatre with Show and Tell (Summerhall)
JOAN –Milk Presents, in association with Derby Theatre and Underbelly Untapped – (Underbelly)
Growth – Paines Plough (Summerhall)
The Duke –Hoipolloi, PBJ Management, Theatre Royal Plymouth with Save The Children –(Pleasance)
Scorch – Prime Cut Productions - Roundabout @ Summerhall

Primary Times Children’s Choice Award
Winner: Children are Stinky – Circus Trick Tease (Assembly) 

So You Think You’re Funny?
Winner: Heidi Regan
2nd place: Ruth Hunter
3rd place: Danielle Walker

The Stage Awards for Acting Excellence 
Winners –week one
Kill the Beast – Kill the Beast: Don't Wake the Damp – Kill the Beast (Pleasance)
Liam Brennan – Diary of a Madman – Gate Theatre, Notting Hill (Traverse Theatre)

Winners – week two
Charlotte Josephine – Blush – Snuff Box Theatre in association with Underbelly Untapped (Underbelly)
Penelope McDonald and Emma Romy-Jones – Care Takers – Truant Company (C venues)

Winners –week three
Lucy Jane Parkinson – JOAN – Milk Presents, in association with Derby Theatre and Underbelly Untapped (Underbelly)
Nancy Sullivan – Fabric – Robin Rayner, TREMers & The Marlowe Theatre (Underbelly)
One Year Lease – Please Excuse My Dear Aunt Sally – One Year Lease Theater Company (Pleasance)

The Stage Special Award
Winner: Mark Thomas – Mark Thomas: The Red Shed – Lakin McCarthy in association with West Yorkshire Playhouse (Traverse Theatre)

Total Theatre Awards
Emerging Company/Artist Winners:
(I Could Go On Singing) Over The Rainbow – FK Alexander with Okishima Island Tourist Association (Summerhall)
One Hundred Homes – Yinka Kuitenbrouwer, Big in Belgium, Richard Jordan, Theatre Royal Plymouth (Summerhall)

Physical/Visual Theatre Winners:
Bildraum – Atelier Bildraum, Big in Belgium, Richard Jordan, Theatre Royal Plymouth (Summerhall)
Cock and Bull – Nic Green with Laura Bradshaw and Rosana Cade – Forest Fringe

Innovation/Experimentation & Playing with Form Winner:
Hot Brown Honey – Briefs Factory (Assembly)

Total Theatre & The Place Award for Dance
Winner: Happy Hour – Mauro Paccagnella and Alessandro Bernardeschi (Summerhall)

Total Theatre & Jacksons Lane Award for Circus
Winner: Ockham's Razor: Tipping Point – Turtle Key Arts (C venues)