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#tfhq’s edinburgh fringe picks

In just two weeks, the mixed brain team will touch down in Edinburgh for our Fringe debut. Celebrating its 70th birthday, the Ed Fringe is where it’s at for new work from across the world. Eager to hit those cobbled streets, we’ve been having a scroll through the programme. You know we’ve got big love for artists of African Heritage and we were thrilled to see so many in the line-up to choose from, but there are only so many show-seeing hours in the day, so these are the ones you’ll see us at.


  1. Bone Woman is an original new play adapted from Irish, Gullah, Mexican-American and Inuit folklore written, choreographed and performed by American storyteller Imani G Alexander
  2. Dane Baptiste the first black British act to be nominated for an Edinburgh Comedy award – is back at the Fringe to talk about our worldwide pursuit of wealth, power and pleasure in G.O.D.
  3. Based on a true story, Yvette is a one-woman show about stolen childhood and growing up with a secret. The show revolves around Evie, who is thirteen and lives in Neasden with her Mum.
  4. Take a break from the shows to meet-up with other artists of colour at Fringe Central.
  5. Part of the Made in Scotland Showcase, Woke is a story about the 20th-century African-American experience told through the eyes of two women of different generations.
  6. Freedom – based on a true story – depicts the themes of sex slavery, domestic violence and misogyny set against the backdrop of life in 1980’s Uganda.
  7. Yolanda Mercy returns to the Fringe to ask ‘What does it mean to be an adult, and when do you become one?’ in Quarter Life Crisis.
  8. Four monologues delve deep into aspects of different Jamaican identities to explore Blackness, gender, sexuality, religion and Jamaican nationalism in The Black That I Am.
  9. The 2016 Edinburgh Festival Fringe Sell-Out Laurel holder I Am Rhythm takes you on a dance and music journey, telling the story of the evolution of rhythm and dance in South Africa.
  10. Funny Women Award-winning comedian London Hughes mixes her love of dance, television and comedy as she explores the crazy world of entertainment and examines the hot topic of diversity in the industry in Superstar.
  11. When the statue of Cecil John Rhodes was dismantled at the University of Cape Town, seven postgraduates wrote The Fallabout race, class, gender, sexism, colonialism and ideologies of patriarchy.
  12. Where Is Home? examines themes of migration, identity and belonging through improvisation, delivering a rare insight into the creative process alongside a heady mix of soul, jazz, African and western forms.
  13. Comedian Twayna Mayne guides the audience through a lifetime of labels and contradiction in Black Girl.
  14. Tayo Aluko brings two historical plays to this year’s Fringe. Just an Ordinary Lawyerabout Britain’s first black judge, Tunji Sowande and Call Mr Robeson, which premiered at the Fringe ten years ago.
  15. The story of James Sims – the self-ascribed father of modern gynecology who operated on slaves without anaesthetic – weaves through Pauline Mayers’ own in What If I Told You.
  16. The award-winning East London hip-hop company Boy Blue Entertainment bring Black Whyte Gray – their dance theatre show combining tightly drilled choreography with a ground-shaking electronic score – to the Edinburgh International Festival.
  17. Our Sustained Theatre Fund partners Talawa bring Half Breed to the Fringe, a dark comedy about finding your voice.
  18. Alongside The Fall, Baxter Theatre bring Mies Julie, Karoo Moose – No Fathers and three other plays to the Assembly venues this year.
  19. Playwright Dionna Michelle Daniel weaves together generations of stories through poetry and song in Gunshot Medley, a new play that addresses black lives in the US.
  20. Award-winning playwright Inua Ellams will be at the festival with his touring show An Evening with an Immigrant.
  21. Comedian Archie Maddocks talks about how he wishes someone would take control of his life so he didn’t have to, an accidentally racist girlfriend, a killer doughnut and an altercation with a monkey in IlluminArchie.


If you’re there for longer than we are or if you have room for more shows, check out Black Theatre Live’s list of shows by artists of colour and this one from The List.

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