I wrote a year ago about how my saxophone and I were fortunate enough to perform at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in 2018. I was blessed to share a stage with my teenage daughter as well as an incredible group of very talented actors and musicians.
At the time I thought it was a once in a lifetime experience that I was unlikely to repeat.
Fast forward to now, and I find myself sitting in a cafe in a small village just outside of Cambridge, UK, with a dear friend of mine.
Yesterday (and the day before) was a big travelling day – I flew from my home in Melbourne, Australia, to London with a brief 3 hour stop in Guangzhou, China on the way. Actually, 36 hours travelling door to door was less than I thought it would take.
The reason for my trip is to once again perform at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2019.
Saxophones and Airplanes
Hot off the heels of my Sydney trip with my Tenor saxophone a couple of weeks ago, my Alto sax and I are in a cafe in Cambridge visiting friends and relatives for a couple of days before heading north to Edinburgh in Scotland, UK.
I will confess to not often going on a plane together with my saxophone. The last couple of weeks have been unusual. However, I will say that if luck has anything to do with deliberately and consciously being in the right place at the right time, then I have been very lucky.
My fellow nuworks Theatre cast are also making their way to Edinburgh over the next few days where we will meet up for the beginning of another grand adventure.
Three Shows – Multiple Performances
This time around, we are performing 3 separate shows – That Bastard Brecht, Freak Show and FAWK.
Last year we won the overall Best Overseas Show Award for our original performance of That Bastard Brecht: an epic theatre musical with live band (featuring me and my saxophone) about the writer, poet and playwright Bertolt Brecht, set in early 1920’s Germany.
We performed That Bastard Brecht again at the Adelaide Fringe Festival, again to nice reviews and critical acclaim.
So, the logic was that we would do a return run at Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2019 and see what happens.
While we are here we are taking the opportunity to do two more shows as well.
Freak Show is a modern retelling of the Ancient Greek Tragedy, Antigone. There is a tyrannical leader who tweets inappropriate and dubiously truthful things about people and events, the gods get angry and people die. In true Greek Tragedy style, no one ends up living happily ever after.
However, our version has fantastic songs and is very impressive. While “fun” might not be the best description, it is certainly very powerful and very impressive.
( Last year we did our version of the Greek Tragedy, Electra. The synopsis is very similar: there is scheming and plotting, people are murdered and raped, then the gods get angry and more people die. Those wacky ancient Greeks may have been a little bit confused as to what makes for a good fun night out at the theatre….)
Our other show is called FAWK. It’s a family show about a grumpy crow that gets its comeuppance from a girl, a mouse and a scarecrow.
The young crow is played by the real 9yo daughter of the main grumpy crow, so again this year there is a family component to our cast like my daughter and I last year.
I am playing my saxophone (and have a minor cameo speaking part) in That Bastard Brecht, and I’m helping with sound, lights (and tweets) with the other two shows.
Similar to last year, we will doubtless see many, many other performances from actors / musicians / dancers of varying skills and quality.
I recall seeing some incredible shows last year…..and some incredibly crap shows too…..which is all part of the fun at a world renowned festival such as which happens in August in Edinburgh ! I am looking forward to seeing some more !!
I am not writing this to brag. Far from it.
The point I am trying to make is that music, and playing saxophone in particular, is fun.
It opens doors that you or I may have never thought possible. It can introduce you to new musicians, new people, new experiences.
It can help you make life long friends, join a group of like minded people and travel the world. Or travel 15 minutes down the road from your house to a rehearsal or a show.
A couple of my British Members here at HowToPlayTheSax.com have been in contact with me and suggested that they and their friends and family are coming to #edfringe2019 , so I am looking forward to meeting them at one of our shows.
If you are reading this – and you are in Edinburgh over the next couple of weeks, please come and introduce yourself and say hi. I’m always on for a chat, especially when there are saxophones involved !
I will see you at Paradise Greens, St Augustine’s Church – 41 George IV Bridge, Edinburgh EH1 1EL – one of the thousands of venues hosting Fringe acts – at 4:30pm every day between August 6th and August 20th, 2019 ?
#makeyourfringe #edfringe2019 #nuworkstheatre #thatbastardbrecht #howtoplaythesaxophone #saxophonelessons
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