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More Awards: Total Theatre, Spirit, Carol Tambor

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As the Fringe nears its conclusion on Monday, several more prizes have been doled out, with the Total Theatre, the Spirit of the Fringe (x2) and the Carol Tambor Best of the Edinburgh Fringe awards amongst those announced today (27 August 2010).

The Total Theatre Awards - were established in 1997 to recognise those “pushing at the boundaries of traditional theatre” at the festival – received a record 417 entries this year, an increase of 56% on 2009, including a surge in applications from comedy from the Fringe programme.

Pippa Bailey, director of Total Theatre Awards commented: “This year we have assessed more shows than ever, and have seen an interesting movement from acts listed as comedy who are embracing total theatre and applying to be considered. It has also been a great year for innovation and the judges felt strongly that this should be recognised, so we have given six awards instead of the planned five across the three categories.”

As live-tweeted on Whatsontage.com, the 2010 Total Theatre Award winners are as follows:

Emerging company

  • Sex Idiot - by Bryony Kimmings / Escalator East to Edinburgh at Zoo Roxy

Physical/Visual Theatre

  • White - by Catherine Wheels at Traverse Theatre @ Scottish Book Trust
  • Tabu - by Nofit State at Notfit State Circus, Leith Walk


  • Roadkill - by Ankur Productions/ Pachamama Productions at Traverse Theatre
  • The Author - by News from Nowhere at Traverse Theatre
  • 30 Days to Space - by Bootworks Theatre at Forest Fringe Café

Significant Contribution to the Field of Total Theatre

  • David Bates, Speigelmaestro of The Famous Speigeltent

The last award, presented by Kath Mainland, chief executive of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society, was given in recognition of the role David Bates has played in bringing forward cabaret, burlesque and new variety, and also in recognition that the Speigel Garden creates a fantastic environment for artists and audiences alike.

In addition to the third round of the Scotsman’s Fringe First awards, reported early this morning, several other prizes were presented at the final Fringe Firsts ceremony held today in Edinburgh.

Gilded Balloon founder Karen Koren, who has been running the Big Four venue for the past 25 years, was given the Jack Tinker Spirit of the Fringe Award.

The Carol Tambor Best of Edinburgh Award - which was setup in 2004 and includes an all-expenses-paid season in New York – was presented to Pants on Fire’s play with music Ovid’s Metamorphoses, which reinvents the Roman myths with a British wartime twist.

There were two recipients of the Holden Street Award - both invited to perform at the Adelaide Fringe in Australia - Bound and Roadkill, both singled out elsewhere in this year’s various prize-givings.

The Arches Brick Award - in which experimental companies are invited to perform at the Glasgow Arches Theatre – was also split, going to both Me and the Machine for When We Meet Again (Introduced as Friends) and ThickSkin for Davey Anderson’s Blackout.

And finally, Fringe veteran Mervyn Stutter, who presents his Pick of the Fringe daily showcase throughout the festival (and who also hosted the Musical Theatre Matters: UK Awards, sponsored by Whatsonstage.com), has announced his own Mervyn Stutter’s Spirit of the Fringe Awards. Since 1992, these have been presented on the last day of Stutter’s Edinburgh run. This Sunday, the performers will present an extract of their show, just like any other performance of Mervyn Stutter’s Pick of the Fringe, after which they will be presented with their prize.

The eight Mervyn Stutter winners are:

  • Arthur Smith\'s Cobbled Up (Pleasance)
  • The Magnets (Underbelly)
  • Sarah Louise Young\'s Cabaret Whore Encore! (Laughing Horse Free Festival)
  • Henning When\'s My Struggle (Just the Tonic @ The Caves)
  • The Fragility of X (Underbelly)
  • Tom Adams\' Can\'t Come (GRV Guthrie Street)
  • Sticks, Stones, Broken Bones (Underbelly)


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