One of the most exciting aspects of the Ventnor Fringe is how each year artists bring work to the Festival that questions and challenges the issues of our time. Perhaps one of the most relevant contemporary themes that shines through this year is the topic of migration.
Today Festival Director Jack Whitewood takes a look at 5 shows in this year’s programme that explore the complex issues of migration, travelers and the movement of people in the modern world, all in very different ways.
Thursday 9th Aug / 2pm / Pier Street Playhouse / £6
The real life experinces of Dembe and Julie from Uganda and Marwan from Syria are brought to life by members of Isle of Wight Amnesty who read first hand accounts of their journeys to the UK. I saw this at the Exchange last year and it really hit home the bureaucratic no mans land people can find themselves stuck in.
Sunday 12th Aug / 1pm + 6pm / The Other Place / £10 / 2for1
Billed as a deeply moving one man play by the Australlian playwright Daniel Keene which tells the story of Ringo, who is one of the 60 million displaced people in the world. Sheltering in a cardboard box in an innner city park he is a survivor from a childhood as a soldier. This is a play which explores the life of someone you might be tempted to walk by without even giving a second glance. I’m hoping this play will make us think again. Reviews from the London run seem promising.
The Tropicalia Island
Tuesday 7th + Wednesday 8th Aug / 5pm / Parkside Tent / £10
A tragedy has destroyed almost the whole world but The Tropicalia Island has survived and Amanda Ferreira is the Immigration Officer talking to European refugees about the asylum rules and opportunities for them on the Island.
Kit & Caboodle
Thursday 9th Aug / 1pm + 3pm / Parkside / £6 – £5
A beautiful outdoor puppet show for the whole family which explores remarkable journeys of all types and sizes. Thingumajig Theatre’s giant rolling mule puppet carries with it bags and cases which each hold another story. This is a company we’ve kept an eye on from afar for sometime. I can’t wait to see them at Ventnor Fringe.
Thursday 9th Aug / 9pm / Parkside Tent / £10
Incredibly talented cellist and kora player Tunde Jegede and multimedia artist Sunara Begum return to the Isle of Wight following two sell out shows at the Ventnor Exchange. This will be the world premiere of a new piece which combines their art forms to weave together stories that span both Britain and Nigeria and what it means to be displaced in the modern world. This will form part of a whole week residency for these two artists, the first the Fringe has every hosted, which is something I hope we can build on in future.