Monthly Archives :

December 2015

An Interview with Olly Fry

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Tell us about your show, where does it come from?

My show came out of a wet and windy few weeks spent in a tent at the 2013 Edinburgh Fringe Festival doing a play I hated. I decided to make sure this never happened again.  I Hooky, I feel, had to be made because personally I feel that today there is a wide social expectation for people to grow up fast and, as we all grow and develop differently, this can lead to people to feeling that they missed something as a kid. So my own experiences of childhood can be felt by the audience too.

What should the audience expect?

The audience should expect to see pirates, mermaids, tribes people and one very lost boy. 

Why should I come to your show?

It’s a show that balances the quirky and personal, as well as giving the audience a chance to meet their inner child. 

What is your history with the Ventnor Fringe Festival?

I came two years ago to the fringe, but last year was the first time I performed a rough version of this. Since then, I have toured the show to Cardiff and Bath. It’s great to finally bring it back home to where it began. 

What’s next for Olly Fry?

I’m started a new project at the Quay Arts Centre in Newport, Isle of Wight. And, I’m just about to finish writing a BBC submission. 

Anything else Olly?

Hey, who doesn’t like pirates?


By Laura Clare Reid

Free the Fringe

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Alongside the vast array of ticketed events on offer at the Fringe, there are also many opportunities to immerse yourself in culture with free events. By purchasing The Fringe Pass for just £2, you can gain access to the Woodland Bars, The Observatory and unlimited use of the Fringe shuttle bus throughout the week! It’s a no-brainer!

There are limitless opportunities to dive into rich culture as the Free Fringe events includes, not only music, but spoken word, bushcraft workshops, yoga and magic acts, and many others. 

Amongst the highlights at the Woodland Bar are Polar Maps, who performed on the Main Stage at Rhythmtree Festival this year, The Diamond Age, described by NME as “Bright, catchy and totally convincing” and Bully Bones, following their performance at the Isle of Wight Festival this year. There are also regular yoga sessions with Maitri, hula-hoop workshops with Tilly Twist and ballad poems from David A. 

The Observatory sees performances from the Electro Love DJs, after successful stints at the Isle of Wight Festival and V-Dub Island, soul/electro swing pioneer DJ Kaftan and former Resonate member Harriet Back. 

Add all those to buskers around town, surprise pop-up performances and artists performing at the Ventnor Exchange and you have a week packed with fun-filled activities for all to enjoy! Everyone loves a freebie, right?

by Luke Joynes


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Inter-room festival director has to step in as info structure of Ventnor Fringe deteriorates.

Jack Whitewood has relinquished all respective control. Due to gross negligence, veteran of the 6 year old festival, Sid Vicious, has now taken over full direction of Ventnor Fringe. Sid had this to say…

“It’s ruff man”

Our sources say that this down to extreme fatigue which has led to the organisers’ inability to string sentences together, retain information or stand still for any period of time.

Above is a photographic account of the moment Mr Vicious took over VFRINGE 2015.

We jest; they’ve been doing a fantastic job. The review team have seen all the organisers and volunteers working hard to make this year a fantastic experience for you.

Please tweet us with your messages, Instagram us with your photos or email us with your experiences. 

Media Team Highlights

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Hollie’s Highlights:

Best bits? More like best fits. My personal favourite from the entire week were the varying styles of trousers worn by Matt Hitt. This young reporter sported a luxurious range of pants (Hollie turned American here for some reason) alternating from sequined skin tight bottoms that left nothing to the imagination to a charming pair of Lacroix chords. All complimented by an umbrella hat and many clever witticisms. From the Ventnor Fringe I would say that my biggest highlight was without a doubt the fantastic Kiya Heartwood and Tejas. 


Matt’s Highlights:


Well, what a week! We’ve been through a lot haven’t we?

As the festival draws to a close, don’t be downhearted, there’s still plenty of madness and excitement to be part of.

I’ve been on stage four times this week with one more show to go tonight and I couldn’t think of a better way to end what has been an amazing week. Just like every year, I’ve met some wonderful people, sung some marvelous songs, and sampled some fantastic food. I’ve also not slept for what feels like a week and all my eight pints of blood have replaced with gin.

One of the aspects of the Fringe that brings me back every year is the volunteers. This motley crew come from far and wide and bring their infectious enthusiasm with them. Late night card games, a Kate Bush Singalong and an impromptu poetry battle were just a few of the wonderful antics of this band of crazy fools.

Alongside returning faces, new friends are made as the Fringe Family grows year on year and we’ll miss them all when they drift back to their normal lives.

Sleep will come tomorrow, but for now I’m off to don the sequins once again. And maybe one more gin.



Laura’s Highlights:

You know darlings, I’ve been shackled to either a typewriter (okay, laptop) or a piano for most of the week. I’ve lost the feeling in my fingers tips. But when I have managed to escape media/musician servitude, I’ve managed to catch some corkers.

Ever is a favourite, her ethereal electro pop makes me feel things. It’s the soundtrack to the life I’d like to be having. I’d be wearing more floaty dresses whilst watching sunsets whilst “Bones” plays in the background. She’s going to be big. Get in there now and be that person who is like “yeah, I was into her before she got famous”. Be that person.

Next is a northern import to the Ventnor Fringe, Miles Goodall. A piano based singer song writer, he has a sophisticated song writing ability, with soulful vocals and complex chord arrangements – far too mature for his age! He is from Liverpool but is currently based in Brighton. He has already caught the attention of BBC Introducing, BBC Merseyside and national radio across the south of England. Another artist to start getting excited about now so you can lord it over your friends when they get big. Go on, you KNOW you’re that person.

Finally I’m going to bang on about bangers. Juicy ones. Smothered in thick glossy gravy, nestled on a fluffy bed of creamy mash. The Bangers and Mash trailer at Parkside has been making people very happy this week, including this satisfied sausage enthusiast of a reporter. Using only local ingredients and with delicious veggie and gluten free options, The Event’s Co’s latest foody enterprise is bound to take the festival gastro scene by storm. But we got them first! Ha!

Oh yeah and let’s not forget The Ventnor Darlings…


Navy Knickers

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Spelling tests, smear tests, mad mums, bad boyz, navy knickers and nicked TV’s? You can expect all of these things and more from these shy and retiring ladies. One is a member of the British Empire (MBE for short darlings), an award winning poet and artist – Donna Jones.

The other is a Ventnor Fringe Media Team favourite, ve star author and broadcaster – Joan Ellis. This will be quite the event. Having met these two furiously fabulous females, I can’t recommend strongly enough that you buy a ticket to this o ering of stories, spoken word, high drama and knickers.

Seriously, these are two severely interesting, talented and inspirational women. And they’re a bit of a bloody good laugh too. Go and see. 


By Laura Clare Reid

Fashion of the Day

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Well, what a beautiful Wednesday we’ve had Fringers, the sun has prevailed and the grey dispersed for the day!

There were so many fabulous summer outfits at carnival, but my fringe frock actually went to sleek chique Helen Egleton.

Sporting an all black bohemian look with aztec silver to match, she was rocking Ventnor sea front. Low rise is the new high rise, and with ‘the height of summer’ upon us, it’s always okay to get flip flops on and that cheeky bit of midriff out.

Wednesday’s top tip is – keep it simple, keep it black, add some silver and a flip flop to match.

Hand in Hand

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I’ve often wondered where this biosphere ends and the gates of purgatory begin. It turns out it’s quite simply by walking into the media room, I jest. No, those who walk the astral planes would unquestionably be quieter with vastly improved sanity.

Venturing out of this husk of magnolia paint, blue tac and spread sheets can seem quite terrifying. Yesterday I sauntered through the Fringe and was accosted by a large hill, the Kraken, tales of ethereal dreams and three girls from the 1920s resurrected from the dead.

However, the Kraken served me drinks, the ethereal dreams turned to serine mumblings of better days and the wartime gals sang with such beautiful harmonics that my mind felt at ease once more.

So in the end all was well in the world and I had myself a lovely time.

Moving onto the evening, ah yes the Carnival, the deafening sounds of samba and marching bands still ringing in my ears. An array of flamboyant figures danced their way around the traffic-free streets on Ventnor. This year this 126 year old Carnival was joined by the Shakespearian actors of Scena Mundi and our Heretic Historians. Characters that seemed out of place walking the avenues just an hour before became part of the rich tapestry Ventnor has worked so hard to create.

Well done Ventnor.


Island City Music

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Sounding somewhere between the streets of Verona and an ambient forest, Island City Music present an interesting mix.

One that should be heard and felt; I mean that in that sense of the bubbling sensation you get when the bow strikes the strings of the violin, or softly sweeps it and the music takes you.

To all those hatin’ classical scoffs, for me, this is the very point of music and all its varying notes.

I have always been a sucker for strings and that classical melody that sweeps me away. I am sure that those who scoff at classical and prefer the thrashing of a guitar will be struck with the simplicity of a twiddling melody that will haunt and inhibit them too.

This band have successfully created, with their ingenious playing, a modern twist to some very classically constructed songs. Which are not constrained or mundane; they instead present an electric experimental mix that pricks your ears.

Island City Music will be playing at 2pm on Saturday in the Central Car Park if you missed them.

By Jordan Royl  


For the Child Within

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As the sun fades, the moon rises and you think all is quiet until the twinkling of a music box tantalises the sleeping toys to life.

Feast your eyes on a fantastical family friendly show, The Toymaker’s Dream at The Assembly Hall 18:00 tonight.

Toys from across the ages are bought to life in a live and kicking show by the IOW’s very own LVB Dance.

The professional dance troupe boast locking, popping, classic ballet and contemporary dance in their repertoire and their set even features flips, tricks and contortion. The show is sure to rekindle your childhood memories and the endless hours of adventure you enjoyed with your closest and dearest cuddly bear or ever amazing nimble action figure.

There are even some Marvel superheroes too to protect against those creepy porcelain dolls and their scary lolling heads. But be sure to be sprightly and don’t be inert, or the toys may steal you away into the depths of their toy box! 

By Jordan Royl


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You find yourself located within the deepest south insane asylum of the British Isles, commonly referred to as the Isle of Wight. This insanity comes from the Island’s passion for music and all manner of cultural oddities.  

Let me cast your minds away from the present day to the summer of 1969. To one of the most revered historic events that British modern history has ever seen. The day the Isle of Wight very nearly sank.

Not literally you understand, I suppose I should explain…

A mass pilgrimage descended upon the Isle of Wight to behold their deity, Bob Dylan. This was an event unheard of by this sleepy coast of Britannia. Some 15,000 people alighted the (substantially smaller than we have today) boat service chanting ‘The Times They are A-Changin’  and sporting their ‘Help Bob Dylan Sink The IOW’ bumper stickers.

An audience of 15,000 may not seem such a ghastly number these days. But put it this way, if a culturally historic event of this magnitude happened now the Island certainly would sink.  

The man of the hour that put this pint-sized Island into the music archives is Ray Foulk. Ray slipped Dylan out from underneath the organisers of Woodstock; Dylan’s own back garden, and all the way across the seas to the Isle of Wight.

Ray and his daughter, Caroline Foulk, have written a book about this fantastic story and will be hosting a talk with questions at 7.30pm in Ventnor Arts Club this evening. Be there to hear the story of how Ray Foulk began Stealing Dylan from Woodstock.