Brighton Fringe is the largest arts festival in England; it sets out to entertain, stimulate and educate a wide audience by providing a showcase for diverse art forms across four weeks. Performers pay a one-off registration fee to be included in the programme, which is neither curated nor artistically directed by the central Brighton Fringe team. Brighton Fringe Ltd is a registered charity and an organisation that supports artists, venues, producers and audiences. The central organisation works with a network of performers, artists, venue managers & producers to encourage artistic diversity, quality and innovation within the programme.
Brighton Fringe Ltd is a service organisation and registered charity that looks to support and educate artists and producers to promote the arts to a wider audience.
Brighton & Hove has held fringe activity since Brighton Festivals’ creation in 1967. Over the years this has grown significantly and been presented in a number of different ways: ‘Fringe’, ‘Umbrella’, ‘The Open’ and ‘Brighton Festival Fringe’ in 2002. It became a company in its own right in 2006, appointed an independent board of directors and the name changed to 'Brighton Fringe' in 2012. This made the difference between the two festivals very clear: Brighton Festival is a series of curated and programmed events; Brighton Fringe, however, provides open access to everyone who wants to take part.
When did it start and why?
Brighton Fringe started as an extension to the Brighton Festival’s curated programme in 1967 and worked as a showcase for local artists, performers and promoters. Brighton Fringe grew so considerably that it became a company and festival in its own right in 2006.
What does Brighton Fringe do?
The Brighton Fringe team work to develop audiences and ensure that participation remains accessible to all. The team work throughout the year on a number of services that include:
BROCHURE PRODUCTION: 100,000 circulated and distributed from March through May in Brighton & Hove, Sussex and London.
BOX OFFICE: Responsible for selling over 249,400 tickets in 2018, online, in person, over the telephone and through the Brighton Fringe app.
WEBSITE: The Brighton Fringe website is maintained and updated by the Brighton Fringe team and contains not just the full searchable programme but a large amount of extra information.
PARTICIPANT SERVICES: Produces guides and organises take part events for Brighton Fringe participants as well as giving advice and information to venues, performers, industry professionals and members of the public.
FRINGE ACADEMY:Brighton Fringe runs a series of workshops throughout the year to help participants and venue managers make the most of their time at Brighton Fringe and beyond. They cover a wide range of topics including Budgeting, Marketing, Touring and Insurance. Workshops are FREE for all participants.
ARTS INDUSTRY SERVICES: We work with hundreds of Arts Industry Professionals from across the globe who are looking for work to take elsewhere. These include Programmers from other festivals and venues, Agents, Directors, Producers and Rural Touring Schemes. We offer complementary tickets (with permission from the participant) as well as offering advice on which shows to see, and scheduling services. In 2017 our visiting Arts Industry Professionals requested over 300 tickets to over 200 shows. This led to many events being offered further touring opportunities, including international dates.
WINDOW: We run an Arts Industry Showcase in the first week of Brighton Fringe. 10 events from the Brighton Fringe programme are selected by an external panel of experts following a separate application process. Eligible events must be new work (created since the end of Brighton Fringe the previous year), have performance dates within the first week of Brighton Fringe, and be ready to tour. WINDOW events are then highlighted in our Arts Industry marketing campaign. On average 75% of WINDOW companies gained further touring dates as a direct result of the showcase. We are currently reviewing the scheme and hope to run it again in 2020. For Brighton Fringe 2019 we will continue to offer our Arts Industry Service, which helps participants and visiting Arts Industry Professionals connect. More details on the Arts Industry Service can be found here. .
PRESS & MARKETING: Brighton Fringe is responsible for the press and marketing of Brighton Fringe as a whole. Based on the open access principle, we do not market individual events and shows.
FUNDING & BURSARIES: We work with a number of partner organisations to offer bursaries to help participants take part in Brighton Fringe.
BRIGHTON FRINGE AWARDS: Brighton Fringe work with partner organisations to present a wide range of awards to participants. These are presented at a ceremony on the last night of Brighton Fringe.
FRINGE CITY: Brighton Fringe works to produce this popular outdoor event every weekend during May, to grow Brighton Fringe audiences and showcase your event. You can apply to perform at Fringe City through the registration form.