Dublin Fringe Festival has announced a major festival programme for 2022 full of unmissable art experiences over 16 days and nights this September:
Dublin Fringe Festival is back and it’s big! The festival reveals a large scale festival programme today for the first time since it’s 2019 edition. Celebrating the glorious, the curious and the improbable from the top of the sky-line’s tallest buildings, to the peace of your bathtub at home, in streetside confession boxes and on off-road bus tours, the 2022 programme is packed with performances that will shift your perspective and offer you release.
Presenting big nights out, one of a kind group experiences and amplifying artists who create space for communal reflection and shared laughter. This, the 28th edition of Dublin Fringe, will shine a spotlight on the weird, the hyper-local and those who forge their own path. Introducing the brightest new talent – more than half of this year’s artists will be presenting work at the festival for the very first time. This is a festival full of feeling harnessing rest, rage, revelry and everything in between. Dublin Fringe Festival is looking to the future with 586 performances in 27 venues, hosting 50 world premieres and 15 Dublin premieres, where over 430 artists are set to overrun the city. These artists are the pied pipers and master poets, deep thinkers and agents of change, joy foragers and maestros of mess who make the city worth living in. Let’s go!
Dublin Fringe will find a way to reach you this September with unique outdoor and at home experiences and lots to see in beloved local venues near you – the 2022 festival has a variety of ways to connect with audiences, making sure that the Fringe magic is accessible to everyone. Staying devoted to artistic risk, active spectatorship and shared moments in time, the festival is working with joy and experimentation as a core value. With a resolute commitment to new voices and new ideas, this edition will offer an introduction to the radical makers and urgent voices whose work demands to be seen and heard. The Festival calls for audiences to stay intrepid and get involved – you will reap the rewards with discovery, beauty and laughter that lingers long after the curtain falls.
Ruth McGowan, Dublin Fringe Festival, Artistic Director & CEO, says: “We’re so excited to reveal what this years festival has in store for audiences – there are so many incredible projects that it’s been very hard to keep it a secret for this long! This programme prizes joy and play, togetherness and truth, beauty and defiance, with experiences made by some of the most courageous and compelling artists in the country. We’re inviting audiences to round up their friends and follow an artist somewhere new. There are after dark adventures for the night-owls, sunrise performances that reimagine the city centre, and plenty of the unusual, one-of-a-kind Fringe experiences that you’ll be talking about for weeks afterwards.”
Liz Meaney, Arts Director Performing and Local Arts, at the Arts Council of Ireland says: “Over the past few years, the Dublin Fringe Festival has strengthened its commitment to developing innovative and accessible ways for audiences to access the arts and to support artists to develop and strengthen their practice.
As we return to in-person events, the festival presents an eclectic and challenging array of new works that supports audiences to explore their city with fresh perspectives. Of note this year is the considerable work undertaken to develop the WEFT programme, which aims to provide pathways for individuals and communities who have been excluded from the arts, to lead in the making of the arts. With the support of an Open Call award in 2021, Dublin Fringe Festival, in collaboration with a cohort of national and International professional artists, has developed an 18 month programme which facilitates new voices to emerge in the performing arts. The Festival’s commitment to talent develop remains one of the key legacies of the organisation’s work as well as its ongoing work in Equality, Diversity and Inclusion.’
This year’s festival programme is divided into 8 CHAPTERS – BIG NIGHTS OUT / ESCAPADES / TRAILBLAZERS + MAVERICKS / PUNCHLINES / YOUNG RADICALS / THIS CITY / PLAYS PLAYS PLAYS / and LEGACIES + FUTURES for audiences to explore – all grouped by theme or experience – here they are in more detail:
BIG NIGHTS OUT:
Championing the art that’s made after dark with glittering, unforgettable cabaret, clubbing and comedy:
Lisa Fa’alafi and Busty Beatz of Hot Brown Honey are BACK at Dublin Fringe Festival – armed with a mobilised troop of Irish Femmes of Colour who are locked, loaded and ready to take to the stage with HIVE CITY LEGACY: DUBLIN CHAPTER in this genre-bending, heart-thumping, mind-expanding performance. It’s time to shift the paradigm, reclaim the narrative and explore what it means to be a Woman of Colour in Ireland through episodes of dance, song, poetry, performance and more; THISISPOPBABY return to Dublin Fringe with the world premiere of WAKE – a rabble-rousing night of gut-punching theatre, soaring spoken word, stomping beats and outrageous circus; Former child actress, turned teen model, turned drag queen Candy Warhol has been one of Ireland’s leading drag acts for over a decade. This is her first time at Dublin Fringe where she stages a new show, THE WIND THAT SHAKES THE WIG – a story about a Queen who ventures through the Emerald Isle on a queer crusade to champion the nation’s treasures, icons and ultimately save the masses from heteronormativity. Platform Collective are Dublin’s sharpest drag artists and trans comedians putting the alt-right through the ringer in a biting satire called PLATFORMS, where skewering a media landscape that not only enables hate speech, but cheers it on; Team DREAMGUN return with the most iconic films you’ve never seen because they made them up in DREAMGUM VIDEO. The team behind FILM READS let go of the wheel with a triple feature of original laugh-a-minute genre-parodies: Brumpy Goes Vroom (a coming of age talking-car movie), Kiss the Jury (an erotic courtroom drama) and Amazon Wild Adventure (a cash grab based on a fictional theme-park ride); cabaret superstar Xnthony presents his newest show, OLIVER CROMWELL IS REALLY VERY SORRY. Expect a night of pure carnage, legendary pop anthems and bloody historical re-enactments centred around Oliver Cromwell, the Daddy of Democracy and total Taurus; Nick Nikolaou presents ANATOMY OF A NIGHT, a love letter to the queers, the weirdos, the trailblazers, the night-walkers. Part show, part club night its an exploration of identity through memories from queer and club spaces.
Adventurous live art, audio and interdisciplinary experiences, where the setting tells part of the story:
Ray Young in a presentation by Dublin Fringe Festival brings THIRST TRAP – Part-narrative and part-meditation, this is a 30-minute sound piece for audiences to listen to in the bath along with an experience pack of resources to change their physical environment, connecting closely with their personal atmosphere and relationship with their bodies; Jony Easterby’s REMNANT ECOLOGIES is an exclusive night-time adventure in the National Botanic Gardens, Glasnevin. This meditative and immersive night-walk will guide you through a series of light and sound installations, exploring iconic Dublin gardens as you have never seen them before; Limerick’s Light Moves Festival trailblazes the vibrant and expanding field of dance film and screendance in Ireland and internationally. SPIRAL AT THE CASTLE is a performance concept of improvised electronic music in public spaces, inspired by the outdoor live music movement taking place in Seattle, LA and Berlin known as ‘Modular on the Spot’; All aboard for Léann Herlihy’s BEYOND SURVIVAL SCHOOL BUS. Departing from Bull Alley this 90-minute coach trip will lead you through a journey of queer, ecological and abolitionist coalitions which have paved pathways for thriving rather than just surviving; Sunday’s Child in association with SJ Woods presents CONVICTION – an artist-led audio experience tackles questions like ‘what it’s like be an artist who no longer makes art?’ as you have a coffee and walk around one of Dublin’s hidden gem parks; In a co-commission by the Abbey Theatre and Dublin Fringe Festival, Shanna May Breen presents an outdoor project dedicated to Dublin’s (sea)gulls in her new work GULL. This experience on and around the Rosie Hackett Bridge crafts a bird’s-eye view of Dublin city at sunset; Created by an award-winning international team of designers and theatre makers, Unqualified Design Studio present WITHOUT SIN – a contemporary confessional for the modern sinner, this one-to-one encounter cultivates intimate conversations among friends and strangers in the grounds of Dublin Castle.
TRAILBLAZERS + MAVERICKS
Genre-bending, innovative performances and one-of-a-kind artists forging their own path:
Síomha McQuinn brews a freshly ground one-woman comedy romp in COFFEE KID. This will awaken your spirit as it examines universal themes: the journey towards self- worth, the meaning of love and the impact of being the unwanted child of a megastar; Actor and theatre maker Conor Cupples also makes his Dublin Fringe debut with “HE’S PERFECT”, a one man, one mannequin show that explores what it means to be a queer man in an increasingly polarized world; FILMORE! is an installation piece told across platforms exploring the complexities of youth, school, and nostalgia. This Dublin Fringe Festival Commission evokes memories and invites you to become an active participant in an immersive installation followed by a gig at The Workman’s Club; Irish National Opera present OUT OF THE ORDINARY / AS AN NGNÁCH – the world’s first virtual reality community opera in its Dublin premiere. Ecology, nature and flight from danger fire up this new work developed with communities in Inis Meáin, Tallaght and rural Ireland; Supported by the Pan Pan Platform, Colm Higgins presents a live art, sci-fi film, THE BIRDWATCHER’S TRIP TO ALPHA CENTAURI – with live experimental space music from strange instruments and costumes of the future; A brand new show from the award-winning Belfast comedian, Paul Currie – THE CHORUS OF GHOSTS LIVING IN MY SKULL KEEP TELLING ME TO TAKE A SHIT IN THE FRUIT SALAD – Hold on to your reproductive bits all you random chromosomes, you’re in for an hour-long existential genre-defying rollercoaster ride of rule-breaking stand-up comedy; Snatch Circus present SNATCH & GRAB, a D.I.Y spectacle of absurd acrobatics, contorted comedy and household appliances, this show is ‘completely enviro-mental’; Jane Deasy’s new composition OPENING NIGHT is a work of composed theatre; staged and devised in collaboration with theatre artist Wayne Jordan. Expect fantastical collage of sound and theatre starring an off-kilter cabaret duo.
Uproarious stand-up and alternative comedy experiences – so funny they’ll floor you:
Avoid environmental despair and instead join Colm O’Regan in an hour of stand-up comedy, memoir and even hope as he tries to grapple with Everything Being Broken and where he might start to help in CLIMATE WORRIER; Hosted by Sharon Mannion and Anne Gill, featuring academics, comedians and high-waisted jeans, Bright Club presents THE MOTHERSHIP – for anyone who knows a mother, is a mother or even has one.; Julie Jay’s OOPS, THIS IS TOXIC is a dark comedy love letter to Britney Spears. In this nostalgia-fest that is a celebration not just of Britney, but of everyone who survived an era where Justin Timberlake flew high while Janet Jackson got grounded; Join young stand-up comic Emily Ashmore in her show ASHES TO ASHMORE about renewal, regeneration,recovery and watching the world go by; Hosted by Cillian Vermillion and Colin Spress from the podcast Look What’s After Happening, LOOK WHAT YOU’RE AFTER DOING is a raucous spoof, This is Your Life-style chat show. Each night a different comedian is brought down memory lane through photographs, film clips and special guests. The problem is that they’ve never seen any of them before and have to come up with explanations for them on the spot; Award-winning comedian Aidan Greene has stammered since he was four years old. He’s managed to make that funny. But what if he had never stammered at all? I KNOW WHAT YOU DID LAST STAMMER is a stand-up comedy show about how having a disability can shape a life by looking at a life without it; Experience a unique night of laughter from Ireland’s favourite internet comedians in AN EVENING WITH MICHAEL FRY & KILLIAN SUNDERMANN, who are bringing their jokes, sketches and tunes live on stage with their new show; Anna Clifford bounces on to the Dublin Fringe stage with fantastic wit in her new show I SEE DEAD(LY) PEOPLE- a hilarious show about positivity versus the world, Anna will have you in stitches with real stories that are truly unbelievable; Roll up and take your seat for this hilarious parody of the beloved gameshow Blankety Blank as Sissy That Pod x Phoning It In bring us KLANKETY KLANK. Watch as a dazzling cast of Irish comedians, improvisers and drag queens impersonate global and local celebrities in this unique comedy quiz spectacular, with different cast, characters and questions each night.
Playful and thoughtful visual art, theatre Playful and thoughtful visual art, theatre and interactive events made for audiences aged 0 -18:
A TRACKS co-commission from Baboró International Arts Festival for Children, Cork Midsummer Festival and Dublin Fringe Festival is OF BLUEBELLS & BUTTERFLIES by Graffiti Theatre Company. This interactive dance theatre performance for babies (0-12 months) and their adults set in a fantastical garden full of wondrous creatures blossoms to liven our imaginations, inviting the audience to playfully engage through song; Cracking Light Productions gives us RISING TIDE, a FREE interactive exhibition showcasing the voices of young environmental activists living in high floodrisk counties including Dublin, Cork and Clare. They have conjured up alternate futures, ripe with possibility, change and the ultimate hope that a rising tide will lift all boats; Super Paua make their Dublin Fringe debut with WHODUNNIT? THE GREAT ART ROBBERY! This at-home murder-mystery style experience for youngsters charts a stolen pigeon with 12 suspects in the audience. All you have to do is play a character, protect your secrets, and use your detective skills to catch the thief in this online multilingual mystery game for young people aged 8-12 years.
Performances, podcasts and parties in conversation with Dublin, as it is and as it could be:
Growler is an 82-year-old, drum banging, shamanic vulva, from the Liberties in Dublin. Her show “WHERE YE FROM?” will take you on an alchemical theatrical journey using storytelling, song, spoken word and filthy jokes. Her mission is to give voice to the voiceless and to transmute the shite out of the female collective trauma; bluehouse theatre present 24/7 BLISS written by Iseult Deane. This play is set in a 24hour dry cleaners and is about film stars, banshees and build-to-rent apartments. It’s simply a demi-opera dedicated to clean clothes.; A terrific trio in Emmet Kirwan, Eoin French and Claire O’Reilly come together to concoct a powerful, poetic and musical journey through a gentrified city in their spoken-word and music play ACCENTS. Commissioned by Dublin Fringe Festival, this transformative new show is about the arrival of a new life, the families we try to create, the families we may never have, and the post-crash boom generation living a life delayed; Chaos Factory presents a new play in HOTEL HAPPINESS which is a dedicated escape from reality. A retreat from yourself. A place to be whoever you want to be for 24 hours only. A time to switch off, let go, fantasize, forget. With one rule only, you must come completely alone; Dublin Fringe Festival and The Ark present Andy Field and Beckie Darlington’s LOOKOUT, at the top of one of Ireland’s tallest buildings. Created with members of The Ark’s Children’s Council, this is a site-specific one-to-one encounter between one adult audience member and one child performer: Spend your weekend getting stuck into great conversations with some of your favourite Dublin residents. Dublin Fringe Festival present NOW WE’RE TALKING! LIVE PODCASTS with James Kavanagh and Louise McSharry. In front of live audience, James and guests will be exploring the spectrum of food and the stories that blossom from culinary experiences, from filthy-delicious takeaways to hangover food to triple Michelin-starred in What Did You Eat This Week? Louise takes her popular Catch Up podcast to a live setting for the first time covering all the topics you’re chatting about in your WhatsApp groups. Expect to think and laugh in equal amounts; Zoe Ní Riordáin’s IT’s ALL THE SAME is a guided early morning audio piece exploring Dublin 1. Featuring members of Dublin Youth Theatre, this live performance is a portrait of a woman on the edge, where the national mood is her mood, all the time.
PLAYS PLAYS PLAYS
Exciting new theatre from the playwrights you need to know:
This section does what is says and is purely about brand new plays. The Collective stage KITCHENSINKDRAMA, written by Brian Bennett, this experimental new play with a talking fox has a lot of mystery and no plumbing; A Dublin Fringe Festival commission THE PERFECT IMMIGRANT by Samuel Yakura is a story woven through prose and poetry, that will make you shift in your seat as you are teased with the discomfort of this Nigerian immigrant settling in to Ireland; Ciara Elizabeth Smyth brings us adarkly funny new play that offers a theatrical exploration into the human brain via the genitals in LIE LOW; A new voice from the urban Gaeltacht of west Belfast, MINIMAL HUMAN CONTACT, delves deep into the world of compulsive gambling, to produce this first play written by Naoise Cairealláin, better known as award-winning rapper Moglaí Bap from KNEECAP: The new play BLISTER by Síofra O’Meara is fast, witty, insightful and will make you really value your own relationship – because nobody’s love story is as doomed as this one; Dylan Coburn Gray & Once Off Productions create a state of the nation play in ABSENT THE WRONG. With a large cast of exciting performers on the Peacock Stage at the Abbey Theatre. This blistering production is about adoptees in Ireland; Bump&Grind Theatre Company present FRIGID, a coming of age comedy about frenemies, first times and figuring it out. Lash on some SunShimmer, pop your collar and pucker up for a nerve wrecking trip down memory lane as a teenager; A Dublin Fringe Festival Commission, SPEAR by CN Smith that reminisces over past athletic accolades of three old friends while asking who have they become now; Corcadorca Theatre Company present Eimear Reilly’s THE SPIN – a new play is a meditation on the trauma of grief, its multi-generational repercussions, and the depths of love; Lianne O’Hara brings us real insight into an otherwise concealed aspect of Irish life, this play will challenge your beliefs around sex work. FLUFF follows two Dublin strippers through an evening’s work, this performance explores bodily autonomy, feminism, entitlement, power, and money in a setting which is usually kept behind closed doors.
FUTURES + LEGACIES:
Dance, live art, talks and performances that challenge inheritances and envisage futures:
CORRUPTING CARE by David McGovern is a performance that will see alternative carers take to the stage to share their untamed practices. Inspired by queer, crip and cyberfeminist theory, the show will upend perceptions of care, moving away from infantilisation and towards self-determination; COOKING THE VEGAN SALMON OF KNOWLEDGE by Bradán asks you to join the artist as they cook a vegan version of smoked salmon, using the ingredients to have a conversation about the history of food and human impact on the environment in deep time. With live cooking and live music; FAILED BY DESIGN by Cian Jordan and Allie O’Rourke introduces comedians who have spent their lives being good little designers by day and doing what they’re told by their heartless corporate overlords. Now they’re going to redesign the whole damn system, one room at a time in this interactive comedy make-and-do show; ÓWE by Mufutau Yusuf is a new dance show inspired by meditations on Yoruba proverbs, proverbs that act as an archive of ancestral knowledge. This solo performance is an emotional resurrection of a past that is both personal and ancestral; Co-commissioned by the Abbey Theatre and Dublin Fringe Festival and presented in association with the National Concert Hall THE REST ROOMS by Áine O’Hara is a coming together of, by and for disabled, D/deaf, chronically ill, neurodiverse people and anyone who needs a rest. Join us for a series of events, performances and quiet spaces of communal gathering; OH, BROTHER. by Ragged Ruin is a tale about two brothers who didn’t know each other and eventually unite; A Dance Double Bill with two duos of rising dance stars, Ghaliah Conroy and Saoirse Lambkin O’Kane stage SAOIRSE NA MBAN, a dance performance that explores the treatment of Irish women throughout generations, understanding their diverse experiences and how it’s affected them and their identity and TEST 1 by Rosie Stebbing and Ornella Dufay-Miralles is a physically poetic exploration through dance of the complicated relationships we all have with our avatars, augmented reality and our Instagram lives and the metaverse; PIG BRAIN by Emma Finnegan, Sam Killian and Annachiara Vispi is a play about billionaires, animals and the online world. It’s about being too insignificant to make things change. It’s about pigs: smart, cute, and in dire need of our help; TOM MORAN IS A BIG FAT FILTHY DISGUSTING LIAR – Tom is a charismatic people-pleaser, an expert in empathy, but someone who struggles with the truth. Join him in the jungle of shame as he seeks to exorcise ghosts, stop sucking in his tummy and discover the joy in being honest; in WE ARE AN ARCHIPELAGO Erin Fornoff is performed to a live score from pianist Johnny Taylor, this show imagines the return of an old man to his home place and his unlikely friendship with young pregnant woman Deena.
Weft is an 18-month talent development and network building project for early career black artists and artists of colour more broadly in Ireland. Over the last year, this landmark body of work has resulted in new connections, new ideas and impactful dialogue.
The Weft Studio Group was an initiative for racialised artists who wanted to make their own work on their own terms. Together with facilitator Dylan Coburn Gray, these 13 artists – of different disciplines but equal talent, rigour, promise – shared skills with one another; presented work-in-progress to a peer audience; took in shows in London and Dublin that were provocative foils to the artists’ own work.
This year’s festival programme includes work by four Weft Studio Artists: FILMORE! / The Perfect Immigrant by Samuel Yakura / and Spear by CN Smith and Shiva R Joyce developing new work with the support of the Artist at Work Residency.
This is not the end of the Weft Studio – it’s a set of evolving partnerships. We look forward to more ideas born in this Weft Studio Group featuring in future editions of Dublin Fringe Festival.
Visionary artists and organisers Origins Eile moved into Fringe HQ as the organisation’s first ever FRINGE LAB Associate Company. They are working across the year to create meaningful opportunities for networking, collaboration and creative growth, facilitating free events and workshops while also developing their own organisation through a number of international mentorships.
Weft brought heroes Hot Brown Honey back to Ireland! This summer they are assembling an extraordinary crew of Femme Black artists and Artists of Colour to create Hive City Legacy: Dublin Chapter. That’s right – an Ireland based crew of amazing multidisciplinary performers are creating a brand-new show as part of this global movement.
The artists in this year’s programme are bringing us abundance in September: prepare to be overwhelmed by the sensorial, the strange, the now and the next. Breathe out and give in to the plethora of ideas at play. These artists are expunging hidden pasts, taking us to the not-so distant futures and vitally, viscerally, luxuriating in the now. Some powers have been hard won and these artists are holding space for remembrance – of the small, the slow, and the togetherness of it all.
This year’s artists are issuing a reminder to exist urgently, to dance uproariously and to embrace the full breadth of your inner oddities. They’re calling us to move forward, but to do so in community. Travel with them: overindulge, go wild, think too much, exhaust yourselves.
DUBLIN FRINGE FESTIVAL 2022 runs city-wide from September 10 – 25. The full 2022 programme is on sale now at fringefest.com [and 1800 374 643 from end of August].