fringe@theOTR is part of the Bath Fringe Festival and will run from May 29th to June 11th 2017.  This year we have a total of twenty events over the fortnight, split equally between music and comedy.

The festival at this venue is again sponsored this year by the Bath-based Sitec Group, and we thank them for their support which has enabled us to attract a very strong line-up including a finalist from last year’s Britain’s Got Talent and a comedian who has regularly appeared on TV in Phoenix Nights and Mrs Brown’s Boys:

Freedom of Speech

Monday May 29th 8pm

Social barriers will dissipate as Rick Molland and Sully O’Sullivan go head-to-head in an epic stand-up comedy battle about freedom of speech. So controversially that, In its first week at the Edinburgh Fringe, this comedy event saw an audience member forcibly ejected for hurling abuse… in a show about Freedom of Speech!  Come and see what made her so irate!

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90s Acoustic Mixtape LIVE

Tuesday May 30th 8pm

Choose Britpop. Choose anthems. Choose reminding yourself of when you used to stay out past midnight on a school night. Choose songs you fell in love to. Choose incredible acoustic twists on the best dance and grunge music of the decade. Choose remembering muddy festival moments with tens of thousands of lighters aloft. Choose guilty pleasure pop songs you only ever sing in the shower. Choose music to make you feel alive.  Re-live the best of the 90s with the acoustic supergroup of Simon Allen, Sam & Beth Eason, Tom Corneill and Lee Cole.

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Think of a Song

Wednesday May 31st 8pm

When we go to a show or concert, what are our expectations? To what extent do we, the audience, create the performance? How does the space affect us? How do other audience members impact on our experience? ‘Think of a Song’ sets out to explore these and other questions in a unique, collective, experimental-theatre experience.  Singer-songwriter Brian Madigan is famed for his lengthy, spoken intros. Indeed, during a previous Fringe Festival performance, he got the biggest cheer of the night when he introduced his last song but ran out of time to perform it.   So what if he were to remove the songs altogether – only thinking them ‘out loud’ as the audience were invited to imagine them? Would that be deeply uncomfortable? Transcendental? A brief moment of sanity amid the cacophony of everyday madness? Or an evening wasted?   There is, of course, only one way to find out.   If you only go to one high-risk, experimental, participatory, silent-music performance this Fringe, make it ‘Think of a Song’. One thing is for certain: you won’t forget it in a hurry … …

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Mad About The Boy

Wednesday May 31st 8.30pm

Stephanie Laing’s love life has been a roller-coaster ride, if roller coasters involve a lot of awkward sex, self-sabotage and therapy. Come and hear this lovable little weirdo talk about all the boys she’s done stuff with, including some proper wrong-uns.

‘Eye-wateringly honest. Devastating technique with natural comic timing and delivery’ – Chortle

‘Gloriously silly, wonderfully unpretentious’ – BroadwayBaby.com

NOTE: This performance is in the third-floor Library where there is no Disabled Access

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Guitar on a Summer Evening

Thursday June 1st 8pm

Join award winning classical guitarist James Rippingale as he makes his Bath debut with a program of musical delights and guitar favorites featuring pieces by J. S. Bach along with his own unique compositions and ending with a musical journey through the heart of Spain. The programme will include the timeless guitar classics Asturias by Albeniz and Tarrega’s enchanting Recuerdos de la Alhambra as we journey through the rich sound worlds of this majestic instrument. The concert will be preceded by an hour long classical guitar taster workshop. Bring your guitar, join in the fun, learn some techniques and let James introduce you to this wonderful versatile instrument (to book for the guitar workshop email James direct)

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Work in Progress

Thursday June 1st 8pm

Devon based stand up comedians Tom Glover and Richard James have a wealth of experience on the comedy circuit, but for both of them this will be the first outing of their debut solo shows, which they will be performing as a double header.

Tom is a new father battling with the struggles of bringing up a child in modern Britain whilst not being willing to put the Lego down himself yet. He will take down everyone from Donald Trump to Peppa Pig as he tries to come to terms with what it means to be a man and a father in a world that’s falling apart around him.

Richard a self confessed nerd brings a show about his dreams of being an explorer and how this conflicts with his main passion of staying indoors. From funny tales about growing up in the small world of the South West, to his experiences of long distance relationships, Richard will take you on a guided tour of the world as he sees it.
This will be an opportunity to see both shows in their embryonic stage with the pair planning to develop them before taking them to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in 2018.

NOTE: This performance is in the third-floor Library where there is no Disabled Access

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Jasmine

Friday June 2nd 8pm

Jasmine Elcott moved some judges to tears with her audition on Britain’s Got Talent last year, winning Ant & Dec’s Golden-Buzzer nomination before going on to finish fourth in the Final.  Come and experience live the 15-year-old girl that David Walliams said “looked like an Angel and sounded like one too.”

Jasmine has been singing from the age of 4 years old. Her vocals have captivated audiences wherever she has performed. She has appeared in the West End musicals ‘Annie’ and ‘Fame’, as well as in TV programmes such as CBBC Big Performance 3 working with Gareth Malone, Openmic UK, Voice in a Million (VIAM) and, of course, 2016’s Britain’s Got Talent, her YouTube Videos from which have all had millions of views each.

Jasmine has made numerous appearances in charitable events at Stratford Theatre Royal, The Royal Concert Hall in Nottingham and at the Savoy Theatre to mark the Queen’s Diamond Jubillee. She was also one of the artists who performed on a charity single, Miss You Machine, as a tribute to fusilier Lee Rigby.

Now, in this solo gig, she will perform in her own classical R&B style inspired by listening to artists such as Whitney Houston, Maria Carey, and Alicia Keys to name a few.

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Always Lands On His Feet

Friday June 2nd 8pm

Tony Basnett is a young and exciting act, with bundles of energy and enthusiasm. He is a playful and cheeky performer with a childish outlook on anything and everything. He’s reached the final of numerous competitions including Comedy Central Student of the year, Beat the Frog World Series, Harrogate Comedian of the year and Preston Comedian of the Year. (Always the finalist, never a prize)

‘Genuinely rib-tickling material coupled with an effortlessly confident yet reassuringly laid-back demeanour’. Spotlight Comedy

NOTE: This performance is in the third-floor Library where there is no Disabled Access

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Joe Probert plus Support

Saturday June 3rd 8pm

19-year-old Bristolian Joe Probert is one of the UK’s most promising singer/songwriters – single-mindedly motivated to deliver fresh music that people love. Self-taught, whilst other kids were on X-Boxes, Joe was busking on the streets of Bristol & Bath, before setting-up his own DIY recording studio in the garden shed.

“The street was really my first ever stage, it was really like my very own music testing ground,” Joe admits, “It’s where I’d test out the music I’d written and see which tracks got the best public response. I even grew a little busking fan-base where people would arrange to come and see me perform the next time I was on that street corner.”

Joe used his earnings to build a DIY studio/shed in the back garden, and began laying the early foundations for what turned into his debut EP, released via Funnel Music in 2016. He drew interest of the likes of Virgin Radio, BBC Introducing and Amazing Radio, and is now back in his studio writing and recording his new EP which is due out in September.

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Simon Currie’s 6plus1

Sunday June 4th 7.30pm

6plus1 is a band of seven musicians playing New Orleans Jazz, mixing in Funk, Rock and Ska with 2 Saxophonists doubling woodwind, 2 trumpets, trombone, tuba and drums.  Some of the music is presented with a comic edge, next to virtuosic playing. Home-made PVC instruments feature in some of the musical routines. The group tours the UK in schools, arts centres and theatres, and will be appearing at the Edinburgh Fringe at The Greenside.

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Your Love Is A Knackered Bus Stop I Can No Longer Be Arsed To Vandalise

Sunday June 4th 8pm

If Stewart Lee, Jack Dee and Morrissey ever had a child together then Liam Pickford is who they would call son. Liam has crafted his own unique brand of stand up, mixing cleverly honed material and punchlines with excitingly unpredictable audience interaction. All this, mixed in with a hint of ‘whimsy’ and clever observations whilst delivered in a wonderfully unenthusiastic and grumpy style.

“He’s got funny bones, and a scattergun mind that doesn’t quite work like anybody else’s.”- Steve Bennett, Chortle

NOTE: This performance is in the third-floor Library where there is no Disabled Access

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Phoenix River Band

plus support from Prairie Dog

Monday June 5th 8pm

Phoenix River Band‘s music is original, not heavy or pop, but a potent mix of original songs with driving beats and soulful melodies . There is an undoubted salute to country influences with hints of R&B and Blues, think Allman Brothers meets Chris Rea meets Jackson Browne with a touch of Pink Floyd and Fleetwood Mac and you have .

Prairie Dog are a Southwest based country roots duo consisting of Tracy Neil and Paul Hill. Playing mostly original songs they have a distinctive style of their own which can be rootsy, humorous, edgy and sometimes sensitive. With vocal harmonies and a bluegrass tinged style Prairie Dog are always entertaining and crowd pleasing.

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Two Parallel Columns

Tuesday June 5th & Wednesday 7th June
4pm & 8pm

What do you get when you combine the refined irreverence of Cambridge Footlights performers with budding Bath-based talent? Two days of sketchy silliness in Bath’s iconic Old Theatre Royal. And laughter – Lots and lots of laughter.

Fresh from their sell-out, Cambridge run of Laugh, Why Don’t You? A Sketch Show (4.5*, Varsity), punchy, young comedy troupe Fish Pie! have teamed up with the best of Bath’s student comedians to bring you Two Parallel Columns.

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Shake It Off

Wednesday June 4th 8.30pm

Lucy Thompson’s set is a laughter packed routine including a mixture of clever observations and stories, covering everything from everyday life to her journey as a gay female. Although still a relatively new face on the circuit Lucy has already made a lot of noise earning a Fosters Breaking Talent Award Nominee within her first year on the circuit, plus picking-up the title of Best Breakthrough Act at The 2016 Midlands Comedy Awards.

”Set a great mood for the evening ” – Chortle

NOTE: This performance is in the third-floor Library where there is no Disabled Access

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South-West Open Youth Orchestra

Thursday June 8th 7pm

The South-West Open Youth Orchestra is the UK’s first disabled-led regional youth orchestra, featuring disabled and non-disabled young musicians playing conventional and electronic instruments incorporating accessible EyeGaze technology.

#SWOYO represents a completely new take on what an orchestra can be so, on the eve of their BBC Music Day performance this year, and following their recent feature on The One Show, why not come and experience these uniquely modern young musicians in the intimate surroundings of the Old Theatre Royal in Bath.

Alongside new arrangements of music by Nils Frahm, Michael Nyman & Philip Glass, the highlight of this evening concert will be the premiere of a new composition created especially for the South-West Open Youth Orchestra by Liam Taylor-West.

“We believe that young disabled musicians can radically redefine the very idea of ‘The Orchestra’, tackling inequality, inspiring new musical instruments and creating new musical forms for the 21st century.” Doug Bott – Musical Director, #SWOYO.

All proceeds from this event will go to OpenUp Music, the Bristol-based charity that launched this Orchestra and provides continued support for them.

This performance’s running time is 30 minutes.

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The Unravelling Wilburys

Friday June 9th 7.30pm

Just when they were about to make it in the big time, this band of good ol’ boys from Nashville Tennessee had a whole bunch of songs (allegedly) stolen by Roy Orbison; Jeff Lynne; George Harrison; Bob Dylan and Tom Petty, under the super group pseudonym The Travelling Wilburys.

Things were so bad after that, the real Wilbury brothers resorted to dressing up as The Beatles, and spent over 20 years touring as Sgt. Pepper’s Only Dart Board Band. After a lengthy legal battle, a Hazzard County judge ruled the boys could git back their true identity and hit the highway with all their old songs including: Handle with Care,The End of the Line, The Devil’s Been Busy and, by way of compensation, Pretty Woman; Mr Blue Sky, Mr Tambourine Man All Those Years Ago, The Waiting and many others. …

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Football Manager Ruined My Life

Friday June 9th 8.30pm

Tony Jameson has become one of the UK’s hottest comedic talents. He gave up his day job as a college lecturer (OK, he got made redundant) in 2012, and since then he has gone from strength to strength. His laid back, chatty, observational style has seen him become a favourite at many venues. For the past 18 months, Tony has been touring the UK with his sell out show, Football Manager Ruined My Life, in which he ponders if he could have achieved more had he not spent the last twenty years playing video games.

“Painfully funny.” The List
“You cannot help but watch in awe.” Comedy Central

NOTE: This performance is in the third-floor Library where there is no Disabled Access

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Guy Fawkes

Saturday June 10th 8pm

What happens when you blend six Londoners who-are-not-from-London together and a strong love of music that excites the senses and jolts the heart? Guy Fawkes that’s what.

A backlash to A sides, a response to 4 minute songs by manicured manikins, a single finger to the Ed’s of this world, the beginning of the good new days ; but most of all, an indie and roll that seamlessly blends nuance and beauty with energy and rhythm. Not to be missed. Set to blow up.

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Just Me

Sunday June 11th 8pm

Anyone who has seen Phoenix Nights, That Peter Kay Thing, Mrs Brown’s Boys, Cold Feet and the Ken Loach film Looking For Eric will instantly recognise Andy Wilky, aka Smug Roberts.  He’s a headline act all over the UK and is regarded as something of a cult hero in his native Manchester.

A man with genuinely funny bones able to provoke peals of laughter from a quirky colloquialism or a nonplussed expression, but it is the sheer imagination of his storytelling where he really shines.  Anecdotes from his home life are laced with brilliant punchlines and surreal tangents, including the welcome appearance of a talking dog.

A comedy maestro… the pace, emphasis and rhythm of his delivery is impeccable. A rock-solid act guaranteed to entertain’.

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