Emma O’Donoghue reports from the launch of the ABSOLUT Fringe Festival 2012, Ireland’s largest multi-disciplinary arts festival.
It was a full house at the Button Factory on Wednesday at the launch of the ABSOLUT Fringe Festival 2012. Now in its 18th year, the festival has reached adulthood and is planning to celebrate with its most eclectic selection of music, artistry and performance to date.
Providing guests with a glimpse of what they can expect from Ireland’s largest multidisciplinary arts festival, the night included speeches of warm appreciation by festival organisers and an unsurprisingly rollicking performance by the Rubberbandits. The plastic-bagged duo will returning during the festival to perform, supported by trad/rock band Pop Céilí, at Meeting House Square on 22nd September.
Stack-loads of impressively designed brochures were circulated among the crowd, sporting the tagline and this year’s theme ‘Occupy Your Imagination’. These luminescent booklets detail all of the acts that are on offer over the course of the festival and give a brief synopsis of each piece. The list is extensive, showcasing both emerging home-grown as well as international acts.
The Fringe Festival proposes to turn Dublin into a sixteen-day ‘dream factory’, with acts sprouting up all over the city in venues including the Project Arts Centre, Smock Alley Theatre, the Workman’s Club and the Samuel Beckett Theatre. There will also be events that move through the city, bringing the audience with them; one act will even bring you up the river Liffey. All signs point to a rambunctious medley of performances comprising theatre, discussion, games, music, dance and circus, all hoping to enliven the jaded mind, channelling both the sublime and the ridiculous.
The ABSOLUT Fringe Festival runs from 8–23 September. Further details, this year’s programme and tickets are available at www.fringefest.com