Two syndicate Mates in the My Theatre Mates collective – Katharine Kavanagh and Laura Kressly – today announce the Network of Independent Critics for this year’s Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Read on for full details including how to apply. Well done, Katharine and Laura!
- Providing accommodation for established independent critics to visit Edinburgh Fringe without breaking the bank.
- Increasing media coverage of niche interest and emerging work, which struggles to find representation in the mainstream press.
- Participants will be selected based on passion, knowledge and a proven track record within their chosen area of the performing arts industry.
- Three places are reserved for participants who wish to develop their critical skills and experience within the field of circus arts, in partnership with The Circus Diaries.
Applications open today for participants to join the inaugural Network of Independent Critics event, which will take place during Edinburgh Festival Fringe, from 5-29 August 2016.
The NIC has been set up by Katharine Kavanagh and Laura Kressly, who specialise in critique of circus and Shakespeare respectively, to champion quality arts writing outside of the mainstream presses. The biggest obstacle to covering work at the Fringe is the cost of housing. This NIC scheme will offer subsidised accommodation to critics who host their own writing, podcast or vlog sites, allowing them to visit the Fringe and review a large number of productions in their specialism, all within a condensed geographical area and time period.
Critics will benefit from an affordable immersion into the largest arts festival in the world, where they can hone their skills, increase their portfolio and network with their peers. Last year, Edinburgh Fringe hosted over 50,000 performances of 3,314 shows in 313 venues across the city. Artists and performers at the festival will benefit from the presence of specialised, knowledgeable writers, who may otherwise find costs of attending prohibitive, that will seek and review work that falls outside of mainstream publications’ radar.
Three places are reserved for developing critical voices to specialise in the expanding field of circus arts. These participants will receive additional mentoring support from Katharine Kavanagh, founder of The Circus Diaries. Up to 21 further places are available to cover other special areas of interest across the performing arts, which could range from puppetry to solo performance, new musicals to street busking.
“At the very most, a stay in the city centre NIC house will cost £185 for 6 days,” explains critic Laura Kressly, founder of The Play’s the Thing UK. ‘To reduce costs further, we will launch a crowdfunding campaign once participants have been selected, with all money raised going to subsidise those costs. The goal is to offer all rooms for free and, if things go well, maybe even cover transport costs, too.’
Applicants should email NICritics@mail.com for further details before the closing date of 15th March. If you are interested in supporting this valuable addition to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe landscape, please follow @NICritics on Twitter for the launch of the crowdfunding campaign next month.