What the Fringe? 

what is a fringe festival?

There are hundreds of fringe festivals around the world, and new ones popping up each year. It all started with the Edinburgh Fringe festival in 1947, now the largest arts festival in the world!

The Fringe concept stems from Edinburgh’s first International Festival in 1947, where eight theatre companies turned up uninvited to perform. Since the "official" festival was already using the city's major venues, these companies staged their productions in smaller, alternative venues. 

The Edinburgh Festival Fringe has far outgrown its original size, and now encompasses all art forms - not just theatre. Fringe Festivals now exist all over the world and come in all shapes and sizes. Be it theatre, stand-up comedy, dance, poetry, burlesque, street performance, installation art, mobile art, or any other form of artistry - you name it, a Fringe Festival has put it on.

And the Reykjavík Fringe is no different. We welcome any and all art forms, from all over the world.


I have always worked and did my work on the fringe, where I feel very comfortable.
— Ru Paul

The fringe includes all sorts of stuff,

such as:

  • Theatre

  • Circus

  • Stand-Up comedy

  • Music

  • Cabaret & Variety

  • Opera

  • Outdoor performances

  • Workshops

  • Lectures

  • Poetry

  • Art exhibitions

  • Dance

  • Children’s shows

  • Storytelling