Fringe on the fringes! Arts offers regional rewards

February 23, 2023

As the 2023 Fringe season sweeps through metropolitan Adelaide, larger and louder than ever after the forced dormancy of 2022, one could be forgiven for thinking that this hub of creativity and joy has a solely urban focus.

Bamboozled Productions have of course enjoyed a lengthy connection with the Fringe, including running Fringe in the Hills for several years, and we know first-hand the power that arts has to bring people together in a melting pot of shared perspective and story. To us, that’s self-evident! 

But if you don’t want to take the word of a bunch of juggling, jiggling, tent-toting creative-types, let us refer you to the findings of the Australian Council of the Arts, who summarised their years-long research on the value of the arts across Australia as follows:

“The stories of Australia’s regional and remote communities are integral to the fabric of a culturally ambitious nation, and the artistic excellence among regional artists is critical to a vibrant arts sector that reflects Australia’s depth and diversity. Engagement with the arts enriches the lives of regional Australians and creates stronger, healthier and more cohesive communities.”

This year, Fringe features more than 130 events outside of metropolitan Adelaide. While the Fringe has a rich history of including shows for regional audiences, we’re particularly excited to see more voices in advocacy and government sitting up and taking notice of the power arts has to revitalise, restore and re-activate regional communities who have been doing it tough. Even in response to such overwhelming challenges as climate disaster, the trusty adage that “laughter is the best medicine” has never been more abundantly apparent (well, along with adequate relief funding, but we won’t poke that bear…).

Funding Fringe across the state inspires new offerings

With the South Australian Government recently doubling Fringe funding with a further $2 million per year, growing support for regional access to the arts seems like a no-brainer. The regions will be neglected no more, and are calling out for a richer offering.

In the wake of community cornering Murray River floods over the past few months, Riverlanders were treated to the creme-de-la-creme of the Adelaide Fringe on their own doorstep last weekend, as world-class acts made the trek inland for a laugh-laden garden party in Renmark. There is a growing movement of recognition for the value events like these have to enact real healing in stricken spaces. 

"Whether we are talking about individuals or communities, physically or emotionally, we know the arts have an important role in healing across the spectrum." — Mary Anne Carter, Chairman, National Endowment for the Arts

This is an ethos close to our hearts at Bamboozled; and one that feels more prescient than ever as we look towards the coming months. 

Bamboozled Productions are proud to have partnered with the Adelaide Fringe, the Flinders Ranges Council, and the Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal, to present Fringe in the Flinders, programming a full schedule of family fun and entertainment, including roving circus acts, live music and an incredible aerial act from our friends at Duo Spectacular. Look out for Bamboozled’s own The Little Palais; a standout venue amid the kaleidoscope of local colour!

Head on down to the Quorn Arts Precinct from 5pm to 10pm on Saturday 18th March, and to the Flinders Food Co. in Hawker from 4pm on Sunday 19th March.

Can’t wait that long? Come and see us at the Naracoorte Fringe Street Party for an afternoon of fabulous fun-filled entertainment on Saturday, 25 February, where Bamboozled Productions have programmed a stellar line-up of acts including family favourites Wham Glam The Circus Man, Purple People Comedy + Circus by Zap Circus, and Her Majesty’s Secret Circus (plus so many more!!)

Louise Clarke

74 Upper Sturt Road, Upper Sturt, SA 5156 Australia

P: +61 (0) 404 834 589

We acknowledge the Kaurna People as the Traditional Owners of the land on which we work. We recognise that this land always was and always will be Aboriginal land and we pay our respects to Elders, past, present and emerging.