Melbourne Fringe gears up for biggest festival in October

25 August 2023

Big, bold and packed with events, Melbourne Fringe is preparing to take over Melbourne with its largest ever program this October.

Backed with additional Victorian Government support, the 2023 festival will deliver 475 events in iconic public spaces and diverse venues across the city.

This year Melbourne Fringe has invited art lovers to ‘Play Up!’ and reimagine Melbourne as their own playground. Right on theme is an eight-metre-tall, free for all ages, and fully-accessible playground Swing which will take over the State Library Victoria forecourt with accompanying live music performances.

Swing is one of three projects at this year’s festival to be brought to life thanks to additional funding through the Melbourne City Revitalisation Fund.

Other projects supported through the fund include VOLO: Dreams of Flight, where thrill-seekers don a headset and enjoy a VR flight experience at Fed Square, and the return of Festival Park, a pop-up space featuring two domed performance tents, a beer garden and local food trucks at Queen Victoria Market.

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A longstanding partner of the festival, this year the Victorian Government has also supported the Fringe in the West program, which brings extra performances and events to the western suburbs, and the Fringe Fund, a commissioning initiative to ease financial pressures for independent artists presenting at the festival.

The long-running Deadly Fringe program presents nine works by First Peoples including a new Birrarung route of the popular storytelling event Yalinguth LIVE directed by Jason Tamiru, a new circus piece by Harley Mann of Na Djinang Circus; and a queer art-party celebrating First Peoples dancefloor culture from choreographer Joel Bray.

Melbourne Fringe is a predominantly homegrown affair with 80 per cent of the program created in Victoria by Victorian artists. Melbourne Fringe runs from 3 – 22 October 2023, explore the program