'We should make it free and move it to Norfolk' | The Big Ask: How would you improve the Fringe?

'We should make it free and move it to Norfolk'

The Big Ask: How would you improve the Fringe?

Air con. Lee Apsey, CSI: Crime Scene Improvisation, Underbelly, Bristo Square, 15:35

Have a kite mark system for the flats. Sick if these cheeky bastards Justin Moorhouse, Northern Joker, Gilded Balloon, 19:00

Make it smaller! I started performing here in 1992 and it was (comparatively) tiny. Graham Fellows, Completely out of Character, Maggie's Chamber @ The Free Sisters, 16:30

One shared space for all artists to hang and party. It may have to be an entire castle... Ell Sachs, The Travelling Sisters: Toupé, Gilded Balloon Teviot, 18:15

The cost and the location. I vote we should make it free and move it to Norfolk. Scott Bennett, Leap Year, Just The Tonic At The Mash House, 17:55

The costs upfront. It is insane that hoping to break even or 'only lose two grand' is a thing. I really worry about how much debt people get into and how many great artists are unable to do it in the first place. That's not a funny answer, sorry, but it is true. Richard Soames, Let's Make a Movie, Underbelly - Buttercup, 15:55

Make it so I could bottle the feeling of elation and connection to keep all year long. Without the exhaustion and breakdown. Juliette Burton, Butterfly Effect, Gilded Balloon , 16:15

Stopping the feuding between the free Fringe organisations John Pendal, We Are Family, Gilded Balloon Teviot, 17:30

Change the month, it ruins my summer as most of it is spent worrying and working on my show. Darren Harriott, Darren Harriott: Visceral, Pleasance: Beneath, 21:30

Nothing. It's PERFECT. Lol. No, in all seriousness we'd change a great deal in terms of the infrastructure of the roads, the venue layouts and the way the festival is pitched as a cultural event. Lots of shortcomings, and frankly nobody is talking about serious solutions. Really really sad to see, but there you have it. Disgraces are abound in the present day. Shame on everyone involved. The Pin, The Pin: Backstage, Pleasance Two, 20:00

Show lengths. One hour is too long. They should be 40-45 mins. Perfect length to get everything done without getting boring. Plus at 45 you could probably cut the sad bit. Brett Goldstein, What Is Love Baby Don't Hurt Me, Pleasance: Beneath, 19:00

I'd put it in November. It rains for most of it anyway so what difference would it make. It wouldn't bugger up the summer and at least you'd have Christmas at the end of it to look forward to. Garrett Millerick , Garrett Millerick: Sunflower, Tron, 17:00

Low ABV pale ales and IPAs in the Pleasance Dome bar instead of Carling. David McIver, David McIver Is A Nice Little Man, Opium, 14:30

Ban all sixth form drama troupes from flyering in character. Rob Oldham, Worm's Lament, Pleasance Courtyard, 21:30

Performers should only do 5 day weeks. We're peer pressuring ourselves into torture by doing more. Arnab Chanda, Stories From Arnab, Banshee Labyrinth Cinema Room, 17:00

I'd renovate some warehouses into quality, subsidised performer and tech accommodation with great internet and each would have its own branch of Moratti Pizza and a bar that only served boilersmakers. Chris Betts, Chris Betts Vs The Audience, Bob's Blundabus, 17:20

Get rid of the reviews. They're like antibiotics for audiences. Benumbing and bad for the long term health of humanity. Helen Duff, How Deep is Your Duff, The Hive, 21:00

I wish there weren't so many steps to go up and down. My calves are killing me. Jeremy Nicholas, Jeremy Nicholas - After Dinner Stories From My Disastrous Broadcasting Career, Gilded Balloon Teviot, 13:30

Flyers. I've noticed that they've doubled in size over the last few years and I'm not having it. I'll stick with my a6 thank you very much. It's a disgrace. Lee Kyle, Kicking Potatoes Into The Sea, City Cafe, 10:20

All the industry hangers-on. Christian Talbot, Desperately Seeking Approval , Finnegan’s Wake, 12:00

Once I'd have said I wish the press would cover a wider range of venues to review their comedy at. Now I'm just grateful there's any press left at all. (But if the Comedy Award and the Guardian spend all their time at The Pleasance again, I will continue to moan about it). Scottish Falsetto Sock Puppet Theatre, Superheroes, Gilded Balloon, 22:30

I believe in the Pay What You Want model so much, I'd like to see it applied to bars and renting accommodation as well. August would end with landlords holding a bucket by the door as you squeeze out with all your bags, patting your pockets and looking apologetic. Luke Rollason, Luke Rollason's Planet Earth, Monkey Barrel Comedy Club, 14:30

I would move the whole thing to Margate, which would be great for the local economy. There are loads of hotels and guest houses here, plus sandy beaches and hot weather. Plus I could live in my house, still do some gardening and airbnb my spare room for extortionate rates.Charlie Partridge, I Can Make You Feel Good. By Comparison, Just The Tonic at The Caves, 16:50

Free emotional support puppies for all performers. Davey Reilly, Disposable Camera, Bar-Bados, 15:45

Anyone with an agent or promoter would have to be on the paid fringe. It might make it a more level playing field and stop people being so keen to sign with agents so early in their careers. Barry Ferns, Barry Loves You, The Tron, 21:00

Too many jokes. Everyone just chill out. Be happy to be you. Christy & Mark, Sisters: On Demand, Pleasance Courtyard, 10:58

Separate sections in the print brochure for stand up, sketch and improv Richard Wright, Virgin, Just The Tonic @ The Mash House, 12:50

Ban musical improv groups from being quite so obnoxious when they're flyering. This sounds awfully mean-spirited, but when you're trying to battle through a hangover (caused by an ill-advised but much-needed raft of pints (which themselves were necessitated by yet another useless 3 star review with no pullable quotes)) the last thing in the world you want to hear is a talented and attractive group of people beatboxing and screeching 'would you like a flyer' in an earsplitting falsetto, especially when the most enthusiastic flyering pitch you can manage for your own show, without being dishonest, is: 'It's pay what you want!' Will Dalrymple , Pity Laughs: A Tale Of Two Gays, Just Up The Stairs @ Just The Tonic, 16:05

Advertising and PR budgets should have limits like general elections. Alexander Bennett, Housewives' Favourite, Waverley Bar, 19:30

It would be the Fringe but there would be World Peace at the same time. Kieran Hodgson, Kieran Hodgson: '75, Pleasance Beneath, 20:15

Move it somewhere sunny like Ayia Napa. The weather would be nice and venues would have air conditioning. The cost of flying there would also help dissuade some of the shitcunts who clog up the festival, driving up prices for valid acts and deterring audiences from seeing any more comedy. Leo Kearse, Right Wing Comedian, Espionage - Pravda, 19:30

There needs to be some kind of 'flyer lane' system so that, if you're a tourist, you have to walk down a designated part of the street and run the gauntlet of a million performers desperately flyering for their show, but if you're a performer yourself and just want to quietly get to your venue without anyone doing monologuing/singing/jazz-handing in your face, you have your own exclusive route. Emmy Fyles, Live Your Best Life, Hanover Tap (Wee Tap), 13:15

Forced alignment of venue providers, making them work to offer places on specific deadlines to reduce the 'stick or twist' anxiety. Also, there are some absolutely blinding acts who don't get a look in when it comes to venues because they're not performing on the London scene. That's a bit of a travesty when you see people with 3 rooms or trotting out a work in progress. The Delightful Sausage (aka Chris Cantrill & Amy Gledhill), The Delightful Sausage: Regeneration Game, Monkey Barrel 2, 12:00

All the acts in Edinburgh solemnly agree to not spend on any promotion or PR. Glorious overthrow of the fatcat middlemen that suck up all artist profit. Audiences are forced to just take punts on things, and there is no resultant change in the numbers any of us would have got in our shows anyway. Moon, Moon, Pleasance Attic, 21:30

Abolish flyers and all posters. Punters randomly allocated to shows by ballot. Yianni Agisilaou, I, Human, Pleasance Dome, 21:40

I would curate the Free Fringe shows a bit more. Athena Kugblenu, Follow The Leader, Underbelly, Clover, 17:30

All comedians would have to play Venue Roulette to mix things up! Jake Howie, Read My Lips, Just the Tonic Caves, 21:30

Address the crippling cost of everything - especially accommodation. Just about everybody else in the whole Fringe programme

Published: 21 Aug 2018

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