It is a core part of the Buxton Fringe's philosophy that art is for all and we recognise the need to spread the word in our local community. By making more people aware of the Fringe, we hope to bring the arts to a wider audience. We would also like to encourage more people to perform and exhibit.
As part of this commitment, we take a Fringe float around the Buxton Carnival and put on a free open-air showcase of Fringe events called Fringe Sunday. You can see pictures of these on our gallery pages.
In the last few years we have also conducted community initiatives including working with elderly residents at the Pavilion Care Home to come up with a Fringe wall display and conducting workshops with schools and community groups to create a giant orange fringe to decorate the Pavilion Gardens' bandstand on Fringe Sunday. The fringe is made up of embroidered panels and we hope to continue this on-going project in 2012 thanks to the dedication of Fringe artist Gaye Chorlton.
The Fringe's relationship with schools is extensive. For our 30th anniversary in 2009 a team of artists led young people's workshops to create Vers@Tile, a mosaic triptych that went on to be displayed in Buxton Museum and the Pavilion Gardens' Art Café. For many years the Fringe has used volunteers from the Community School to help staff its Fringe Desk, in 2011, offering work experience to two younger students for the first time.
The Fringe also has a positive relationship with its main sponsor The University of Derby Buxton, in 2011 and 2012 appearing at its student open days and evenings and also helping marketing students with a project about the Fringe.
In the last three years we have trialled a link between Fringe entrants and schools in the Buxton area giving the opportunity for Fringe performers to bring their talents to school children. In 2011 we extended the participating groups to include not just schools but elderly people's care homes and youth organisations. Among those taking part in this initiative in 2011 were Planet Rabbit with their popular wartime comedy drama, Blitz Bride. Their performance at The Hawthorns care home was applauded by the manager, Major Elaine Holder, who explained: "The residents' attention was held throughout and that was down to the skill of the performers who made it so entertaining".
In 2011-12 we have forged a new relationship with the housing association Adullam and have managed to enable service users to see some Fringe shows for free. Around 17 people saw nine different shows ranging from a military tattoo to Shakespeare. One user, Adrian, wrote of his attendance at a show at Underground Venues: ‘Piff the Magic Dragon had me laughing all the way through. I didn’t know magic could be so funny. I even got to stroke Mr Piffles the Chihuahua’.
Adullam was also one organisation to benefit from Fringe performers coming to them. Comedians Seymour and Sykes held a comedy workshop about writing and performing comedy. This interactive experience helped raise confidence and self-esteem through group discussion and stand-up performance.
Service users also provided exquisite orange paper flowers for the Fringe carnival float and we are hoping to explore the idea of further artistic collaborations in the future.
We are constantly trying to think of new ways to broaden our reach and are open to fresh ideas and connections with community groups. If you would like to contact us about any of the above please Send message to Community Links.