Edinburgh Festival Fringe: Traverse reveals 2022 programme

Peep Show star Emily Bruni, the songs of The Staves, a one-woman “gig musical” and a drama focusing on a fictional UK Home Secretary will be part of the Traverse Theatre’s line-up for this year's Fringe.

The Traverse Theatre in Edinburgh. Picture: Sally Jubb
The Traverse Theatre in Edinburgh. Picture: Sally Jubb

A new parody of Fleabag, a drama set in Belfast against the backdrop of the Good Friday Agreement and a queer rom-com will be staged when the venue returns with a full-scale festival programme for the first time in three years.

The Traverse will also be reviving last autumn’s road trip comedy-comedy Wilf and Eavesdropping, a solo audio experience which unfolds on the streets of Edinburgh, and was premiered last August.

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Bruni will be starring in revenge thriller Psychodrama, which follows an actress under investigation for the murder of a theatre director while rehearsing a stage adaptation of Alfred Hitchcock’s Pscyho.

Michael Dylan will be starring in Wilf at the Traverse in August. Picture: Laurence Winram

The music of The Staves will provide the soundtrack for Blood Harmony, which follow a fractured trio of sisters “drawn back together by news that turns their worlds upside down.”

Uma Nada-Rajah’s “politicalliy urgent new play” Exodus will chart the events which unfold when a Home Secretary and her calculating advisor plan a publicity stunt by the White Cliffs of Dover. Aryana Ramkhalawon, Sophie Steer, Anna Russell-Martin and Habiba Saleh have all been cast in the National Theatre of Scotland production.

Queer rom-com Happy Meal, which is being made by a trans creative team, will premiere at the Traverse ahead of a UK tour in the autumn.

Bloody Elle is written and performed by Lauryn Redding, who uses loops and layers of sound to replicate a 10-piece band on stage.

Peep Show star Emily Bruni will be appearing in the revenge thriller Psychodrama as part of the Traverse programme in August.

Michael Dylan will be returning to lead the cast of Wilf, writer James Ley’s queer comedy, which is billed as “a wild and bumpy ride of dodgy Airbnbs, greasy takeaways, anonymous graveyard sex and banging 80s power ballads.”

Also revived is Belfast-set This Is Paradise, by Michael John O’Neill, which explores what happens when a woman receives a phone call which forces her to confront her past.

Linda Crooks, executive producer at the Traverse, said: “TravFest22 marks a bold and brave new beginning for the Traverse, ahead of our 60th anniversary in 2023.

"The last two years have undoubtedly been challenging, but we have continued to bring artists and audiences together online, outdoors and when possible, within our spaces to generate new ideas and keep telling new stories.

"Now we are delighted to again be able to present a full-scale, in-person festival programme and welcome our partners, friends and audiences back to a space where they can connect, imagine, plan and get back to those post show debates we’ve all missed so much.

"We are pleased to welcome friends old and new across the programme and cannot wait to share these vital and vibrant pieces of work with the audiences that’s needed to make them complete.“

Artistic director Gareth Nicholls added: “We couldn’t be more thrilled to be working with so many amazing artists this August – some we know well and others who we are incredibly excited to get to know better.

"The variety and imagination of work on offer this year is a testament to everyone who has been determined to keep creating throughout these difficult times, and have been unwavering in producing work which confronts, comforts and entertains.”

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