It’s arriving rather later than usual – but the Greater Manchester Fringe Festival is now upon us. Throughout October and November, there will be events at venues across the city and also online. There’s a wide variety of original and experimental shows to choose from, including plays, concerts and stand-up comedy. Below, in chronological order, are just five of the best…

#txtshow | Thursdays: 1 Oct - 26 Nov | 7pm | Free

A UK premiere, this immersive theatre piece will take place over Zoom. The script for the show is created in real-time by the viewing audience and it’s recited by a mysterious character named “txt”. A signature project by performance artist Brian Feldman, it has been adapted especially for the internet. As the content comes entirely from what people write anonymously, it may contain explicit content.

Mr Dusty Rose's Ghost Show | Wed 7 - Fri 16 Oct | 8pm & 10pm | £20

The host is a New York-based variety artist known for storytelling and mentalism. He’s coming to our fair city as part of a major tour. He will lead the audience through an evening of history, mystery and mind reading. A modern take on a Victorian Ghost Show, it’s sure to both thrill and chill. You’ll discover what happens when you tell scary stories in the dark.

Antwerp Mansion, Park Crescent, Rusholme, Manchester, M14 5RF
Conversation with Marilyn | Tue 13 - Wed 14 Oct | 7pm | £5

This mother/daughter collaboration is a performance piece featuring songs. Middle-aged mum Kim is tackling her quiet obsession with Marilyn Monroe but beneath the veneer of icon worship are darker themes. She finds similarities between the blonde bombshell and her own late mother, who had an unacknowledged mental illness. Joining in with this obsession, Kim’s daughter – a struggling actress – seeks to inhabit Marilyn’s mind and body.

The Kings Arms, 11 Bloom Street, Salford, M3 6AN
Fruit Salad | Fri 13 - Sat 14 Nov | 7pm | £8

Cherry and Peaches first became friends because of their unusual names. From their teens until their late twenties, they meet in the same pub to catch up over cheap wine. Over the course of this humorous and heart-breaking play, their lives start to diverge as they go through university, relationships, substance abuse, and mental health problems. But can their bond pull them through?

The Kings Arms, 11 Bloom Street, Salford, M3 6AN
Seeking Arrangement | Sat 28 Nov | 7pm, 8.30pm | £5

By day, Bolton-born Charlie works as an intern at the United Nations, fighting to stop the sexual exploitation of women. But by night, she moonlights as a ‘sugar baby’, selling intimacy for cash. This one woman show explores feminist ideas of ownership of the body whilst yielding it to a consumer. It follows Charlie’s battle as she tries to reconcile her career with her other needs.

The Kings Arms, 11 Bloom Street, Salford, M3 6AN
Thu 1 Oct - Mon 30 Nov, Various venues & online, Various Prices
A. James Simpkin
Published on:
Wed 30 Sep 2020