Edinburgh Festival Fringe launches biggest ever line-up
Edinburgh Festival Fringe has announced its biggest ever line-up for this summer.
There will be 50,459 performances of 3,314 shows from 49 countries in 313 venues during August.
The Fringe is the largest arts festival in the world and has been held in the city every August since 1947.
Its programme includes theatre, dance, circus, comedy, music, musicals, opera, cabaret and variety, children's shows, exhibitions, events and spoken word.
Fourteen new venues will host shows this year and overall there is a 3.8% increase on last year's programme.
Kath M Mainland, chief executive of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society, said: "Every year we think we know what it's going to deliver, but every year it surprises, delights, amazes and inspires. The Fringe is a festival like no other."
She said the festival, which runs from 7 to 31 August, was "completely open access", where artists don't need to wait for an invitation to take part.
"There's no curator, no vetting, no barriers," Ms Mainland said. "Just incredible talent from almost 50 countries all over the world."
Fiona Hyslop MSP, Scottish government cabinet secretary for culture, Europe and external affairs, said: "This year's programme shows once again why the Edinburgh Festival Fringe is one of the most important events in the international cultural calendar."
This year, 21 shows will be part of the Made in Scotland programme, a curated showcase of music, theatre and dance, made and produced in Scotland.
Well-known comedians putting on shows at the festival this year include Jo Brand, Ed Byrne, Sue Perkins, Fred MacAulay, Patrick Kielty, Paul Merton, Alan Davies, Trevor Noah, Marcus Brigstocke, Mark Thomas and Reginald D Hunter.
There will also be 250 street performances each day on the Royal Mile and The Mound.