The Mission Theatre has hosted over 30 shows in under two weeks as part of the Bath Fringe Festival 2017, and has given nearly 1000 audience members the chance to experience some fantastic Fringe Theatre.
On Friday 26th May, The Mission played host to the opening night Fringe party, where organisers, audience members and performers got together to chat, network, publicise their shows, enjoy musical entertainment and catch sneak-peaks at some of the Fringe performances.
Students from across Bath, the South West and the UK have performed classic, musical, physical and devised theatre pieces ranging from Theatre With Teeth’s visually-stunning Woolf to OnSet Productions’ moving Final Test and from Bath University Student Theatre’s hilarious version of Tartuffe to Heartbeat - a brand-new musical created by Bath Spa Students.
ThreeDumb Theatre, a company made up of members of this year’s graduating class from the prestigious Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts, brought a newly-written piece of modern drama to The Mission for three nights during the second week of the Fringe. The performances in I thought I might be Jet Li (but it turns out I’m not) went down a storm with audiences and reviewers alike.
Other highlights of the Fringe Festival at The Mission included Novato Dance’s 10th anniversary show Encore - performed to packed houses during the second week of the Festival. The talented dancers used their innovation, diversity and energy to bring a huge variety of dance styles together and form a spectacular show. Also comedian Luke Graves entertained a very happy audience on Sunday 6th June with his show Husband of the Bride.
Saturday 10th June, the final day of the Fringe at The Mission got off to a cracking start when students from Bath College performed a beautiful piece of devised theatre: A Suitcase of Memories. Using dance, song, physical theatre, plus a live band and some fantastic acting, this piece moved its audience to tears with the poignant tale of an elderly couple, Flo and Ernie, looking back at their life together.
The Mission also hosted several shows for children and families during the Fringe Festival, including the outstanding Taking Flight Theatre’s You’ve Got Dragons, Squeezy Green’s Compendium of Games and Brave Bold Drama with Alf the Highwayman.
Audiences have particularly enjoyed the post-show discussions held in The Mission’s Fringe Hub after most of the performances here at The Mission, and the chance to write their own short reviews which they have then posted on our review boards.
The Mission Theatre’s Artistic Director Ann Ellison says:
The quality and quantity of theatrical performances that have taken place across Bath in the 2017 Fringe Festival has surpassed all expectations. I doubt there has ever been such a range and number of theatrical events crammed into a Fringe fortnight. The standard achieved by so many artists was exceptional and audiences have been thrilled by what they have seen.
At The Mission Theatre the post-show Q&As have been extremely popular and have enhanced the overall experience enjoyed by our theatre-goers. Many of the acts will now be going on to further venues and Festivals whilst here in Bath, as the 2017 Fringe draws to an end, we are already looking forward to next year!