Edinburgh Fringe: constitutionally challenging.

Recently, in the past few weeks, I was informed that I’m a member of the Festival Fringe Society in Edinburgh. There are a couple of hundred members, with varying degrees of contribution to the society and festival it supports, and they are the folk who get to vote in trustee elections and so on. I knew I once was a member, but it seems no one’s taken my name of the list – literally, the Board have decided not to revoke memberships while they go through the current constitutional discussions.

And so it came to pass that I found myself at The Hub last week listening and occasionally contributing to the detailed, wide ranging, sometimes repetitive discussion. I arrived late, thanks to teaching commitments, which also serves to restrict the number of questions one wishes to ask: maybe they’ve already been answered?

It was really good to see a number of people who I usually only cross paths with when they’re working or we’re both drinking at the end of night on the festival tiles. The next occasion comes in a month, when a special meeting may vote on the final proposals put forward I believe. It’s not for me to comment here on what I think of the arguments, partly because a lot of it is about the balance between interest groups, yet the definitions of who falls into which group seem to lack… definition. At stake however is the future of the Fringe, whether it remains a festival to which 99% of shows subscribe to the Society and avail themselves of its services, or, not.

The others at the meeting had much more at stake than I, so I kept my own counsel for much of the afternoon – after all, surely my questions had already been discussed, no?