The end of June brings all the best elements of Fringe Festivals to Oxford. Offbeat, created in 2016 by Oxford Playhouse and Old Fire Station

Content by Tei Williams - Press & Arts Marketing

The end of June brings all the best elements of Fringe Festivals to Oxford.  Offbeat, created in 2016 by Oxford Playhouse and Old Fire Station, has shows in more venues than previous years, including high profile comedians and fourteen fabulous shows that can be seen before they head off to Edinburgh in August. Now in its third year, Offbeat boasts a truly eclectic programme of theatre, music, dance, storytelling, family shows, comedy and circus, sixteen of which are home grown in Oxfordshire.

The big comedy nights this year include David Baddiel in My Family: Not The Sitcom, Bridget Christie in What Now?, Desiree Burch in Unf*ckable, Laura Lexx in Trying, plus The Great Offbeat Comedy Night with Sara Pascoe, Ed Gamble, Phil Wang  and newcomer Laura Pattinson.

The first Saturday, 22nd June, is Family Day with 12 shows specially programmed to intrigue and delight younger audiences.  From Blue Planet III to The Actual Reality Arcade and subjects as diverse as politics and owls, the festival offers a wide range of shows at times which will enable young festival goers the opportunity to see several in one day.

Home grown shows feature verbatim theatre, a marathon play reading, theatre pub quiz, excerpts from seven of Oxford’s playwrights and plethora of quality comedy and theatre.

Other highlights include Denim, an outrageous drag musical cabaret act, starring Amrou Al-Kadhi, who appeared as Judy Henchman in the Playhouse panto last year.  Not one to miss a topical moment Blowfish Theatre bring its satirical musical Trump the Musical, filled with raucous comedy and, of course, a terrible wig.  The Foley Explosion is a rare opportunity to experience live sound effects and looping technology in sound worlds that conjure a movie in the mind.  One of the more unusual experiences this year will occur every 15 minutes in a Playhouse dressing room in an immersive, one-on-one experience with three victims of trafficking. And just in case Oxford needs some redemptive advice Shesus & the Sistas are on hand to help.

Hugely popular last year, Crying Out Loud and Circa Tsuica return with their highly talented international band of acrobats and musicians offering a thrilling contemporary circus spectacular under a star-studded big top on Oxpens Meadow.  Offbeat will again be partnering BBC Introducing with 2 evenings and a day of live music from local and emerging musicians.

Louise Chantal and Jeremy Spafford, the Artistic Directors of Oxford Playhouse and Old Fire Station said in a joint statement, ‘Offbeat brings the best of new theatre and entertainment to Oxford. It’s a chance to try something you’d not normally go to see – exciting, fresh, maybe even a little naughty!’

About Oxford Playhouse:

Oxford Playhouse, built in 1938, programmes the best in British and international touring work, seen by over 150, 000 people each year. It also produces and tours its own work, hosts Artists in Residence and runs a new writers’ attachment programme, Playhouse Playmaker.  Supporting local artists and companies plus supporting talent development is at the heart of its ethos.

About Arts at the Old Fire Station (OFS):

OFS, a thriving arts centre in the heart of Oxford, showcases the best of local and international performance and artwork which embody risk and also entertains. It works closely with the homeless charity Crisis, helping to build the confidence and skills of the homeless.

Offbeat 2018

Friday 22 - Sunday 30 June

Oxford Playhouse,
Beaumont Street,
Oxford, OX1 2LW 

Arts at the Old Fire Station,
40 George Street ,
Oxford OX1 2AQ

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