31 August 2017

How to Fringe 2017: Myf Clark

Myf Clark
Marketing, admin, production management, stage management, directing, performing, board management and arts journalism
Co-director for the Girls on Film Festival

SM: Myf is another loved member of our #IndieMedia community. We met through Twitter.

Myf Clark. Selfie

The Melbourne Fringe in three words.
Dynamic, eclectic and FUN!

A favourite Melbourne Fringe memory.
Oh geez, where do I even start?!? I think many of my fave memories come from the Fringe Club - I've learnt how to dance to the Backstreet Boys and N'Sync, I've had bartenders throw condoms at me, I've danced my shoes off, I've scammed free drinks, I've become besties with people in the toilet and I've stolen a lot of show posters from said toilets to decorate my bedroom. And most importantly, I've had oodles of fun there and created so many fond memories. (Yes, even when people knock my drink into my face while I stupidly attempt to dance to Madonna while holding said drink...)

Your experience as an independent artist being part of the Melbourne Fringe?
My first experience in Fringe was as a performer in 2004 for Platform Youth Theatre's Faith, Hope and Surveillance (written by Ben Ellis and directed by John Britton). It was possibly one of the largest casts I've worked with and the most diverse. Saying that, it was probably also one of the shows filled with the most divas, dramas and hook ups (yes, myself included) that I have ever worked on... However I would never give that experience up and I feel like I learned so much from it. Since then, I've stepped behind the scenes and production managed/promoted a few shows.

What makes the Melbourne Fringe unique?
What I love about Melbourne Fringe is I never know what to expect or who to meet – even when I see shows by myself, I feel like I make new friends just by striking up a conversation with the stranger next to me. Melbourne Fringe is a place where I feel safe and happy and open to new experiences all at once and it is these feelings that make me feel proud to be a part of the Melbourne arts scene.

Your advice for choosing what to see in the Melbourne Fringe?
Like many audience members, I will go see many shows because I know people in them. But then I feel like I miss out on so many new potential talents. I actually find Facebook handy during Fringe as I can see what other people plan to see and I find it often opens me up to seeing artists I wouldn't have even considered.

Also, please remember that there are shows on beyond the Fringe Hub area. Some of my fave shows have been Northcote-based (I'm not biased at all!) but I feel that being outside the Hub allows for some greater experimentation. One particular highlight involved a Black Lung show which only took six audience members where we met outside the Northcote Town Hall, got blindfolded and driven to a mystery location, ate dinner amongst the performers, got blindfolded and put back in a car again, and then got dropped off on a side street in Northcote still blindfolded while the cast drove off.

Don't be afraid to take a risk!

Do you think there’s a better system than star ratings for reviews?
Having worked as a reviewer, both with and without star ratings, I have mixed feelings about them. I know that artists love them and they look great on promo material, but I know I personally wouldn't go see a show just because they received a high star rating. Can we start reviewing in emojis instead – that would be an interesting challenge...

Five shows/events that you will not miss at the 2017 Melbourne Fringe.
Grrl Power with Anna Gogo and Michelle Brasier
Estrella Wing, Showgirl by Margot Tanjutco
Crimson Tide
Let’s get Practical! Live. Presented by The Very Good Looking Initiative
Spice! A Singalong

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