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Unique Dance and Circus Shows to Illuminate Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2024

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From shows about ancestry to surrealism, reclaiming your voice, and pricing the body, the festival is set to see these unique dance, physical theatre, and circus shows come to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe this August – including creatives still hungry and Bryony Kimmings, Na Djinang Circus, and Charlotte Mclean and Collaborators.

You Heard Me – Luca Rutherford, Here & Now Showcase (20 – 25 August)

A loud show about quiet power, Newcastle-based theatre maker, performer, and writer Luca Rutherford brings You Heard Me to the EdFringe this year (20 – 25 August @ Zoo Southside). Luca creates work that is ‘softly fierce and fiercely soft’; their creative processes are rooted in spaces of listening where collaborators, participants, and audiences are willing to be changed by what they hear. Focused on the single moment of noise that enabled them to escape a sexually violent attack whilst out on a run, You Heard Me is a poignant and necessary meditation on trauma, community and resilience, communicated through a beautiful blend of playful dancing, recorded narrative, movement, and direct address. Outside of theatre and performance, Luca also makes work across public art, film, and audio.

Show Pony – Chamäleon Berlin, still hungry collective and Bryony Kimmings (August 13 – 26)

What happens when you still want the stage, but it no longer wants you? Part circus show, part training session, and part open-heart surgery, Berlin-based still hungry’s brand new work Show Pony examines the dualities and challenges of life on stage for three female acrobats (August 13 – 26 @ Summerhall).

Co-created with groundbreaking performance artist Bryony Kimmings, Show Pony pulls apart the lessons and meanings hidden in each woman’s personal stories about childhood, career choices, motherhood, health, and friendship – our performers are getting older and asking, WHY DID I BECOME WHAT I AM?

still hungry brought their first show, RAVEN to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in 2019 to high acclaim. Show Pony is the collective’s second performance.

Anatomy for Accountants – Sacha Copland of Java Dance Theatre (August 1-11, 13-18, 20-26)

Natural growth doesn’t make sense in a world tightly commanded by economics – and prolific choreographer Sacha Copland of Java Dance Theatre (Back of the Bus, 2014) has something to say about it.

A show for lovers of the body – and accountants – Anatomy for Accountants is a passionate new dance-theatre show about giving bodies back their full range. Copland prices every aspect of her own life to deconstruct how we define and understand our own worth whilst celebrating the body – joined by live musician and performer Tristan Carter in the role of number-crunching Chief Financial Officer. Anatomy for Accountants examines how our value changes and shifts across our lived experiences; how every forced or pressured YES or each resolute or exhausted NO impacts how we are received by others, and if we depreciate or increase in value in their eyes.

Of The Land On Which We Meet – Na Djinang Circus, part of House of Oz (31 July – 27 August)

Created by the groundbreaking Melbourne-based circus company behind Common Dissonance (2019) and Arterial (2021), acclaimed Na Djinang Circus presents Of The Land On Which We Meet for this year’s Edinburgh Fringe Festival – a visually stunning three-hander circus show that explores contemporary Australia’s lack of connection to its histories, land, and spirit (31 July – 27 August @ Assembly Checkpoint).

Probing themes of connection in modern Australia, the unseen bonds between First Nations People, and connection to Country, Of The Land On Which We Meet asks us how we can celebrate the land’s incredible 60,000+ year past and re-discover its future via performance from Johnny Brown, Bridie Hooper, and Manuela Kaydo-Nitis.

Futuristic Folktales – Charlotte Mclean and Collaborators (13 – 18 August)

Returning after a fantastic International Spring Tour – including performances in Scotland – Charlotte Mclean and Collaborator’s meditative dance show Futuristic Folktales will come to Dance Base @ Assembly (13 – 18 August). Directed by acclaimed choreographer Charlotte Mclean of 2022 Edinburgh Festival Fringe smash-hit And, Futuristic Folktales is a much anticipated dance-theatre show about the momentous story of the first womb. Co-created with a groundbreaking creative team, Futuristic Folktales experiments with contemporary and Scottish Highland dance to explore a unique environment where life and death intimately coexist.

NEGARE – presented by Z Art Dance Company, part of the of the Luxembourg selection supported by KulturLX (12 – 25 August)

Part of acclaimed three-part series LE TRIPTYQUE, country Luxembourg-based Z Art Dance Company will bring their bold and absurdist solo dance theatre show NEGARE, by acclaimed multidisciplinary choreographer and dancer Giovanni Zazzera, to Scottish audiences this summer (12 – 25 August @ C Venues – C Aquila, venue 21).

A poignant foray into the intricacies of the self, NEGARE brings to the fore a curiously atypical and ever-shifting character to question the universal themes of identity and observation. Clothes disappear, a body changes; and a new face is built through the manipulation of mask and tissue.

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