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Festival set to cheer mode | Nelson Fringe Festival

Bay Landscapes Nelson Fringe Festival 2020

14 – 22 August | Tickets from $13 + fees @ Eventfinda

Venue: NCMA, Nile Street, Nelson

Media contact: Lisa Allan | / 02102654000


Festival set to cheer mode

The Bay Landscapes Nelson Fringe Festival 2020 is bursting at the seams with all things creative. More than anything else, it is comedy that shines through in this line-up. 23 shows are set to find a way to make you smirk, chortle and openly and unashamedly guffaw your heart out. But who are these comedians and where do they hail from?

Some are locals. The People’s Republic of Improv train together weekly. They are a bunch of improvisors who are based in Nelson but collectively come from the United States of America, England and Aotearoa. Their style is playful and melodramatic and their series of soap opera-inspired shows have been incredibly popular over the years. This company brings Sliding Doors to the Fringe. If you’ve seen the movie of the same name, then you’ll get the gist of this show. One character, two possible futures, fun times ensured.

Some are children. Cre8 Theatre Company, under the direction of improvisor and teacher, Nikkie Karki, have hit on a winning formula. Basically, their improvised comedy show has a cat in it. Anything involving a cat, has to be good. City Life of Cats is an original show format that follows Pebbles the Cat as she gets up to mischief. This group of young people bring their imaginations, incredible listening skills and their ability to tell a story on-the-spot to Fringe, for you.

Some we can claim. Ben ‘Tito’ Caldwell grew up in Brightwater. Now based in Fielding, he’s a father of five, a husband of one and committed to developing Manawatu’s comedy scene. Tito’s storytelling is insightful, friendly and entertaining. He’s not afraid of being the butt of his own joke and people shouldn’t be surprised at how personal his material gets. Tito brings Fringe a brand new show that he created during lockdown, Social Distancing.

Some we can’t. Matt Powell cut his comedy teeth in Christchurch. He was a key player in the University of Canterbury’s Comedy Club and was part of the ‘new wave’ of Court Jesters who were taken on to relaunch Scared Scriptless at the Court Theatre in 2002. Matt currently calls Wellington home and he is very active in the vibrant improv scene there. He brings two shows to Fringe, The History Boy and ¡ESCÁNDALO!  Both promise high-quality improv from an improvisor who has decades of performing and teaching under his belt.

Some are Australian. Jim Fishwick is Australian. He was living in Australia when we went into lockdown here. This was a problem for him because his wife was living in Kirikiriroa/ Hamilton. He jumped on a plane, sorted immigration out quick smart and the long and short of it is that Fringe gets a lovely slice of Jim Fishwick’s creativity to share. Jim’s shows are Museum Of This Morning and The Saboteur. The former is a delightful invention of a novel museum based on things that happened earlier in the day. The latter is a devilish show, where one player is trying to sabotage the whole thing- but who is The Saboteur and can you figure it out before it’s too late?

With one week, one venue and 31 shows… Fringe 2020 is one sure-fire way to warm up your winter. Book tickets at View the full programme at

Thanks to Fringe sponsors: Nelson City Council/ NRDA, the Rātā Foundation, Bay Landscapes and Garden and our other wonderful supporters.

Click here to find out more

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