Melbourne Fringe Festival 2016

The Melbourne Fringe Festival returns for the 34th year between 15 September – 2 October 2016 with a special focus on children and family programming.

Here are some of the highlights of the family programming, filled with fun and imaginative experience for babies right up to teens.

  1. Kids Club

Melbourne Fringe presents its first ever Kids Club. It is an inclusive and participatory space with free daily programming throughout the last week of the Festival, from body positive dance workshops to a Fringe Footy Club.

Fringe Hub: Arts House – Kids Club, 521 Queensberry St, North Melbourne, 26 September – 2 October

2. Bellbird by Polyglot

melbourne fringe festival 2016

Image by Sarah Walker

Visibility and reality are blurred in Bellbird, Polyglot’s enchanted forest of sound and interactive musical installation. Wander among the hundreds of streaming ribbons, ringing the attached brass bells and create your own playful soundtrack through movement.

ArtPlay, Birrarung Marr, 22-25 Sept, 10am-12pm and 1.30pm-3.30pm, free entry

Special session for under-4’s on Friday 23 Sept, 10am – 12pm. It’s also suitable for children with additional needs as it can be experienced in different ways.

  1. Jugg Life: Kids

melbourne fringe festival 2016

Jugg Life is a fusion of live percussion and two of Australia’s best jugglers, Bryan Hutton and Joe Fisher. Beginning with the simple tap of a stick on a drum and ending with a ludicrous number of props in the air, Jugg Life is intense, non-stop entertainment. Winner: 2015 Gasworks Circus Showdown.

Fringe Hub: Arts House – Meeting Room, 27 Sept-1 Oct, 10:15am, tickets $13-$20

4. Kids vs Art

melbourne fringe festival 2016

Who are the world’s most brutally honest, insightful and funny critics? Kids, without question. Kids vs Art is a podcast series where children are let loose on the world of contemporary art and performance. Melbourne Fringe is handing them the microphones and asking them to review and respond to the Festival. There will be interviews with artists, reviews of shows and an analysis of the Festival program.

New podcasts released Thursdays 15, 22, 26 Sept. Listen at ArtsHouse during the Festival or free download via or


5. Rainbow Cactus

Yana Alana joins forces with The Queries to host an event dedicated to celebrating diversity at this queer family event.

Fringe Hub: Arts House – Kids Club, 28 Sept, 12:30pm, free entry


6. The Adventures of Broer & Zus

melbourne fringe festival 2016

Broer & Zus tell the story of their first day at school as recent immigrants from a ‘far-away’ place to Australia. The day starts off feeling like the end of the world, but through song, dance, comedy, circus and a daydream sequence, they overcome their fears. Winner: Weekly Award for Best Children’s Pedestrian at Adelaide Fringe 2015 and 2016.

Arts Centre Melbourne – Playhouse Rehearsal Room, 27 Sept-1 Oct, 10:00am & 12:30am, tickets $20

7. Josh Earl presents Oliver Up A Tree

A brand new children’s show from award-winning comedian Josh Earl about a small town, a big problem and the creativity of a small boy who brings them together. A show for 5-12 year olds full of songs, stories, paper planes and 100 teddy bears.

Fringe Hub: Arts House – Meeting Room, 27-29 Sept, 11:15am, tickets $12-20

8. Sky Light

This city-scaled light installation by experimental audio-visual artist Robin Fox will connect Melbourne’s city buildings across the Yarra using twelve powerful beams of laser light. Beginning at Princes Bridge, Fringe-goers can choose a path along the river bank, looking up as they follow the light. Invisible from certain angles yet striking from others, the work transforms with the viewer’s perspective.

With four main vantage spots, the artwork will be accompanied by half-hourly visual and audio performances, where laser and sound connect above the river.

Yarra River, Thursday 15 September – l Sunday 18 September. Free.

9. White Beam

Another high impact laser sculpture by Fox will bookend the festival, illuminating Prahran’s Grattan Gardens from Thursday 29 September to the Festival’s close on Sunday 2 October.

Melbourne Fringe 2016

15 September – 2 October 2016


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