Scotsman Fringe Awards: Second week of Fringe First winners announced

ARTS editor Andrew Eaton-Lewis announces our second week of Scotsman Fringe First winners.

Today we are delighted to announce six more winners of the Scotsman’s Fringe First awards. The prizes are given out every week of the festival in recognition of outstanding new writing premiered on the Fringe.

The Fringe First awards are now almost 40 years old (the anniversary is next year), and were originally set up to encourage companies to try out new work in Edinburgh in August. The Fringe, of course, is now a hothouse of new shows, and this year more than 500 shows claimed eligibility for the awards. Our team of judges are still working their way around a long list of nominated shows, while new nominations are coming in every day from our critics. We’ll announce our final list of 2012 Fringe First winners in the paper next Thursday.

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The six winners listed here will be presented with their awards this morning by Claire Sweeney, who is currently appearing in Educating Rita at Assembly George Square. And, next week, please join us for our big, public prize ceremony – the Scotsman Fringe Awards – see below for details.

OUR critic Sally Stott fell in love with Richard Marsh and Katie Bonna’s simple but sophisticated story (at the Pleasance Dome) about a couple who have a drunken one-night stand, then fall out, make up, get together with other people, and find each other again. Our judges


JOE Douglas’s autobiographical monologue, at Assembly, is about a Ugandan boy who asks his British friend to give him money for school, and the complications that ensue. Joyce McMillan was won over by its “beautiful, quiet eloquence”.

WITH its South Africa season, Assembly is staging the kind of comprehensive showcase of international work that is usually the preserve of the EIF. Yael Farber’s complete reinvention of August Strindberg’s play is its crowning achievement – and a major highlight of this year’s Fringe that won a five-star review from Tim Cornwell this week.

IN JENNIFER Tremblay’s play, staged by Stellar Quines at Summerhall, a mother of three, isolated from her friends in the city, uses lists as a way of exerting control over her life. Our critic Susan Mansfield praised the way the show “illuminates the small details of domesticity and motherhood”.

INSPIRED by last year’s protests against public spending cuts, Hannah Price and Emma Callendar have compiled a series of ten-minute dramas at the Traverse, reflecting on the state of the economy, with what Joyce McMillan called “explosive early morning energy”.

DANIEL Kitson is no strange to the Fringe Firsts, and his “jokey, intimate, passionate, and minutely perceptive” new solo performance at the Traverse Theatre won over our critics again.

Scotsman Fringe Awards Show

Put Friday, 24 August in your diary – the return of the Scotsman Fringe Awards

Oonce again, The Scotsman will be hosting its free, end-of-festival awards show in the Spiegeltent at Assembly George Square (not to be confused with the Spiegeltent on George Street, outside the Assembly Rooms).

Come join us at 10:45am next Friday, 24 August, for a morning of live music, performances from award-winning shows, and tearful speeches, as a whole host of prestigious theatre awards announce their 2012 winners.

The guest presenter at this year’s Scotsman Fringe Awards will be Miriam Margolyes, right, currently starring in Dickens’ Women at the Pleasance Courtyard – other guests at the show will be confirmed shortly; watch this space.

The audience at The Scotsman Fringe Awards will be the first people to discover the names of the winners of this year’s Carol Tambor Award (which takes a show to New York), the Holden Street Theatres Award (which takes a show to the Adelaide Fringe), the Brighton Fringe Award, and the Arches Brick Award (created by the cutting-edge Glasgow venue). We’ll also be giving out our final week’s Fringe First awards.

Since they were established in 2004, The Scotsman Fringe Awards have become the biggest awards ceremony at the festival. We have always wanted them to be an inclusive, welcoming event, so tickets are given away for free.

So, please join us this time next week. To claim your free tickets, just cut out the form on this page and bring it to the box office at Assembly George Square or Assembly Hall, at the top of the Mound.

Our thanks to Assembly for once again hosting the Fringe Awards ceremonies this year, as well as our weekly Fringe First presentations.