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Applications for Fringe 2022 are now open!


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Apply for the Free Fest

To apply with a show for this year you need to login to this site, and complete an online application.

If you wish to present more than one show, you need to complete a separate application for each show.

If you have performed with the Free Festival previously, or with the Laughing Horse at festivals in Brighton or Adelaide, you will already have a login, and you can use the same login again.

It is important that you read this page before applying even if you have performed with us before, as this year there is the option to choose doing your show Free and Unticketed, or using the Pay-What-You-Can ticketing system established in 2021. You will need to select your choice on your application form.

Also new for this year - you will also need to select an age rating for your show in your application and this will be used as a guide for programming as well as in our advertised show listings.

If you have a rolled-over show from the cancelled 2020 Fringe, or if you performed your rolled-over show in 2021 please read the information on the peformers home page to see how the process works for you this year.


Choosing FREE AND UNTICKETED or PAY WHAT YOU CAN entry for your show

You need to choose which style entry you'd like for your show as we now have two options.

Following the success of 'Pay What You Can' ticketing in 2021 which was introduced for COVID saftey, we saw the benefits to shows and audience of the format so are keeping this as an option for shows who wish to use it. The other option is using the tradiational completely Free entry and unticketed show entry.

Pay What You Can
  • Shows are ticketed, so people can guarantee entry with a ticket and a donation to the show in advance.
  • These tickets on Sale via the Fringe Office
  • Customers can choose how much they would like to donate in advance, chosing from up to four different prices: £2.50, £5, £7.50 and £10.00
  • Customers with tickets get in first, and when all ticket holders are in then any remaining space can be filled by free entry walk-ins. Tickets are not on sale on the door.
  • At the end of the show the performer can still do a collection for walk-ins and anyone with a ticket who would like to donate some more.
  • 100% of donations and ticket sales go to the performer, outside of the Fringes fees for selling tickets.
  • Performers are responsible to look after thier own ticketing and queues, and manage entry as always - some venues will offer additional help, but you are advised to get someone to help run your door.
  • In 2021 PWYC shows made much more per person that the equivilant free and unticketed shows, on average around £6-8 per person and was less variable than unticketed free shows. We would expect less ticket sales and more walk-ins in 2022 given the unique nature of last years Fringe, so we would expext this average to lower.
  • Performer feedback was there was more involved in running the show, but as they could see advanced sales the same as paid shows then it was easier to target when more advertising was needed, and they benefitted from a higher per person return knowing how much in advance to help with budgeting.
  • Customer feedback showed people liked being able to guarantee entry to the mosy popular shows, while still being able to take a chance on smaller shows.
Free and Unticketed
  • The Traditional method of running a Free Fringe Festival Show.
  • Shows are listed as Free and unticketed - there are no tickets available for the shows.
  • Entry is simply first-come, first-served at the venue.
  • At the end of the show the performer can do a collection for anyone who would like to donate to the show.
  • 100% of donations go to the performer.
  • Performers are responsible to look after thier own queues as always - unticketed shows are much simpler and most peformers can manage the door on their own.
  • Free and unticketed shows typically average £2-3 per person in the collection. Though a lot more depends on the bucket speech and how good a specific performance was.
  • Performer feedback says this is the simplist way to do things, though you miss out on some of the data and advanced knowledge of having tickets
  • Customers are very used to this way of seeing shows at our venues.
Online only Shows

For performers who are unable to get to Edinburgh and want to produce online only shows, with streamed or recorded content we can also make these part of our programme - if you would like this option select our Online venue when applying. These shows can be free or ticketed as you wish.

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Free or PWYC


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Performers Contribution

The Free Festival Performers Contribution 2022

The contribution we ask performers to make towards our central costs, advertising, admin, equiprment and organising is different depending on the entry method you use. This recognises the additional cos, work and time needed to operate PWYC shows, and so shows that have the potential to make a much higher amount from sales contribite more to the pot that runs the Free Festival and keeps it running.

Free and Unticketed Shows

£125 Per show - This is for up to 25 performances of a single show, i.e. one performance a day.

Pay What You Can Ticketed Shows

£125 Per show - This is for up to 25 performances of a single show, i.e. one performance a day.

An adittional contribution per performance depencing on the size of your venue:

  • An additional £1 per performance in venues up to 34 capacity
  • An Additional £2 per perfoemance in venues from 35-69 capacity
  • An Additional £3 per performance in venues with 70-99 capacity
  • An Additional £4 per performance in venues with 100+ capacity
Online only Shows

£50 Per show - For any number of performances.


How we Programme and Select Shows

It is important to note we pick and choose the shows we would like to appear, or we feel would suit our venues and programme the best - so it is better to put in a good and detailed application, rather than a quick one! It is not a case of first-come, first-served.

Though having your application by the first week of February will get you in with the best chance of your preferred space if we like your show, as we will start to programme spaces this year from the middle of February.

We will accept applications at any time before the Fringe, until our venues are full. but in order to have the best chance of the venue and timeslot that you would like, you should apply earlier

Our first slot offers will be sent out in February, with more right the way through February and onwards to the Fringe programme deadlines.

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Programming Shows


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Open but Curated

An Open But Curated Free Festival

All of our shows must be entered into the Official Fringe Programme.

All applications are looked at by our programming team, and we decide which shows best fit our programming.

It is false information, often put around by paid venues and competitors, that free shows are not programmed or curated - they are like any other venues shows, so it's up to you to put in a good quality application so we want to put your show in our venues. We are always over-subscribed.

This year the Fringe's registration deadlines will be later than in pre-covid times, do keep an eye on the Fringe's website for the latest updates for when these will be annoucned. The Discount printed programme deadline will likely be mid-April, Final printed Programme deadline in mid-May, with no deadline for Online only registrations.


How It Works

We aim to get back to all shows that have applied to us by the start of March, and in time for the early Fringe deadline. If you haven't heard from us by early March do email - occasionally some applications do slip through the net, as we do get hundreds (usually over a thousand in the end) to look at.

Your show application will form the basis of your programme listing with us online, in our printed programmes and listings, in our press and PR, and in what we send out to others or display in our venues.

You are able to go back and edit your application and show details at any time, and once your show is confirmed with us you can add images, press & media information, and reviews and links at any time up to and during the Fringe.

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How It Works


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No Restrictions

No Restrictions...

As an organisation we do not restrict performers in any way, and all of our performers are also able to perform with and work with any other venues or Fringe organisations. That is the spririt of an open arts Festival, which the Edinburgh Fringe has pioneered.

Some of our best performers have crossed over shows running with us and paid venues, other free and 'Pay what you Can' venues, and we ourselves collaborate and work with other Festival organisations, promoters, and sponsors all the time to benefit the Free Festival and the Fringe in general.


click here to see details of our venues, click here for general Free Festival Information, and then login to the site to submit an application.