The Big Fringe Round Up 2017

And breathe…! After a hectic four weeks of activity, the Edinburgh Festival Fringe has drawn to a close.

Here, we round up the fundraising highlights of what has been another fantastic Fringe for Waverley Care.

Past, Pleasance, Future

Twenty five years on from our first Fringe together, our relationship with the Pleasance goes from strength to strength.

Throughout August, we had volunteer bucketshakers out in the Courtyard, collecting donations and talking to people about our work. All in, these collections raised a fabulous £29,775, hand counted by more amazing volunteers.

Thanks to Lloyds Banking Group’s bucketshakers and their matched funding scheme, this will increase by £6,660 with more to follow.

Alongside our bucketeers, there were also plenty of shows supporting our work. At the sell-out Tartan Ribbon Comedy Benefit, host Stuart Goldsmith headed a line-up of top comedians including Sara Pascoe, Tim Vine and Tom Allen for a fantastic night of comedy. We’re still waiting for the final total from the Benefit but, as in previous years, it looks set to be a great fundraising night.

For something a bit different, we had Amusical – a hilarious evening where where well-known comedians belted out their favourite show tunes. Jayde Adams and Kiri Pritchard-McLean hosted this unforgettable event, which also included Nish Kumar, Sara Pascoe (supporting us again!), Ed Gamble, Michelle McManus and many others. We’ve heard from Jayde that the show will raise somewhere in the region of £7,500 to support our work!

Elsewhere at the Pleasance, including for the first time a couple of shows promoted at the EICC, a number of acts supported us with post-show bucketshakes and shout outs. These included Young Pleasance, Cirkopolis, Tim Vine, Sue Perkins, Nina Conti, Our Man in Havana, Future Perfect, We are Ian, Murder she Didn’t Write, Showstopper and Newsrevue. In addition, thanks to EUSA who carried collection cans across all of their bars at the Pleasance. We are so grateful for this support, which helped raise more than £5,135.

Overall, we now know we’ve raised over £41,500 at the Pleasance, with box office money still to come in from the big shows.

To top it all off, we learned at the start of the Fringe that our relationship with the Pleasance is up for a Scottish Fundraising Award at a ceremony in early October.

This is a unique relationship and none of it would be possible without the hard work of a great many people over the years. We would like to particularly thank Anthony Alderson and Ryan Taylor at the Pleasance, the many acts that supported us, our tremendous volunteers, and our Fringe Coordinators for 2017 – Ross, Ivana, Craig, Simona and Anna.

Kerb Appeal

The Off the Kerb Comedy Gala has long been one of the comedy highlights of the Fringe, and 2017 proved to be no exception.

An audience of over 2,000 people descended on the Edinburgh Playhouse for the show, which featured a whopping 19 comedians, all in aid of Waverley Care.

Our hosts for the evening, Rob Beckett and Russell Kane, were joined on the bill by Shappi Khorsandi, Mark Watson, Angela Barnes and Al Murray to name a few.

Special mention must go to Tom Lucy, who appeared at both the Tartan Ribbon and Off the Kerb events, Suzi Ruffell, who did Off the Kerb and Amusical, and Tom Allen, who completed a Waverley Care hat-trick of all three shows!

It’ll be a few weeks before we know the final total raised in ticket sales, but this will be added to the £1,300 raised in buckets outside, plus matched funding from Lloyds Banking Group, to make a healthy total.

A huge thank you to our friends at Off the Kerb, and the Playhouse, and to all the amazing comedians who appeared at the Gala.

Crosstentatious

Austentatious, the Jane Austen inspired improv comedy show, returned to the Underbelly, and once again hosted a one-off performance for Waverley Care.

The ever popular Crosstentatious saw the cast swap bonnets and breeches for a sell-out show with hilarious results.

The cast reckon the show will bring in around £3,500 for Waverley Care which, added to £265 collected in buckets is an amazing total.

Thank you to the all-star cast of buxom boys and dashing dames.

Also at Underbelly, Courtney Act, Australian star of RuPaul’s Drag Race and Australian Idol, invited us to bucket shake at her  show, raising £55.

Homegrown Harmony

While the Festival is undoubtedly an international event, it’s great to see local performers shining on the Edinburgh stage in support of Waverley Care.

Our friends at the Bohemians took audiences on a whistle stop tour from Broadway to Hollywood, showcasing the best of stage and screen musicals. A post-show collection for Waverley Care took in over £400.

Meanwhile, the amazing Loud and Proud, Scotland’s LGBT Choir, returned to the Fringe with another great show taking in everything from traditional Scottish folk and gospel music to pop classics! Audiences were once again generous, and we estimate that over £2,300 will have been raised.

While not quite from Edinburgh, Borders duo The Two Moronnies served up a Free Fringe treat of satirical music and decided to collect for Waverley Care. They dropped in to the office out of the blue with £965.

Thanks to everyone involved in these shows for your support.

Fresh Fringe

The team at Edinburgh’s student radio station, Fresh Air, once again got in on the fundraising act with their annual 24hr show.

Hosts Elsa and Robbie served up a mix of music, chat and challenges on the marathon show, somehow managing to sound full of energy right up to the final minute!

The team invited donations to support Waverley Care and smashed their initial £500 target, eventually raising £965.

Among the businesses supporting the show were DARE Fitness, the MGA Academy of Performing Arts, the OUTBall and the Edinburgh Training and Conference Venue.

We are incredibly grateful to Robbie, Elsa, producer Jack and the rest of the team at Fresh Air, for their continuing support of our work.

And finally…

In what has been another hugely entertaining and successful Fringe for Waverley Care, we’d like to say a big, final thank you to all the organisations, venues and performers who have supported us this year, and to everyone who donated.

We are also incredibly grateful to all of our amazing volunteers who shook buckets, counted coins, made ribbons and helped out in the fundraising office to make this possible.

Thank you!

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