Skip the expensive Edinburgh hotel prices and head to Yorkshire's very own Great Yorkshire Fringe festival this July for a huge array of performances, from theatre to comedy and musicals.
What is the Great Yorkshire Fringe?
Following in the footsteps of the long-standing Edinburgh Festival Fringe, the Great Yorkshire Fringe brings the very best in theatre, comedy, cabaret and music to the streets of York each summer. It's been running annually for four years and is set to return between 18-28 July.
Where will shows take place?
The main Yorkshire Fringe hub and box office can be found in York's central Parliament Square along with a few venues and food stalls. Other venues are dotted around York, though all within walking distance of each other.
What's on this year?
There are dozens of shows to choose from across the ten-day festival, and the full programme can be accessed on the Fringe website. We've rounded up some of the highlights below:
Family fun doesn't mean just pleasing the kids. Baby Loves Disco (27 July) is an event for kids and adults alike with a simple concept: a dance party where little ones are welcome. The show has toured over the UK, finding great success with its formula of nostalgic floor-fillers and licensed bar in combo with a toddler chill-out zone and free lollies. Morgan & West’s Utterly Spiffing Spectacular Magic Show For Kids (and Childish Grown-ups!) (20th July) is another show that promises to please both adults and kids with tricks and illusions to delight all ages.
Stand-up fans will be spoilt for choice at this year's Yorkshire Fringe, with shows from award-winning comedians like Janine Harouni (27 July) and Paul Foot (21 July). The enduringly popular Sh!t-faced Shakespeare: Macbeth (25-28 July) troupe will also be making an appearance at the festival for Shakespeare fans who don't take themselves too seriously. For more quirky booze-based comedy, check out Fred's Microbrewery (21-26 July): a hilarious puppet show for adults in which a pub landlord and lady duo serve up beer and banter to the audience.
The Arts Barge will be one of the main hubs for music at this year's Fringe, with everything from Jazz performances (19 July) to a Shape Note Singing Workshop (19 July) taking place at this river bank location. If musicals are your thing, you may want to check out NOTFLIX: The Improvised Musical, (19 July) in which an improv group take the audience's suggestions of recently-watched films to create a brand new musical right before your eyes.
A play from award-winning playwright Elinor Cook, Out of Love (21 July) promises to be a heartfelt exploration of friendship, love and rivalry as the audience follow two best friends whose lives take very different directions. White Nurse (25 July) explores addiction, love and internal struggle through the story of a woman on a rehabilitation journey and is well worth checking out.
How do I book tickets?
Tickets for all events can be booked online on the Yorkshire Fringe website or by phone on 01904 500600. They're print at home tickets, but if you're not able to print at home you can also take valid ID and a reference number to pick them up from the Box Office.