The Sick of the Fringe Writing
Diagnoses are short, snappy and thoughtful descriptions of shows we see, talks we hear, and conversations we have. Their purpose is to give everyone in the world access to a show they might not have seen or might not be able to see.
For those who have seen the shows, these short pieces of writing aim to give the opportunity to engage with the unique perspectives of our writers. All sorts of people write with us, from artists, health care workers and researchers, to writers (professional and not), people who are used to seeing performance and those who are not. We have been keen to include writing from people with direct and lived experience of illness and disability.
For artists, our writing aims to make the content their work accessible to audiences. We don't use words like "it was great" or "it was horrible" but instead look to "it was about..." "the show helped me think more about...." so that audiences everywhere can join the conversation.
We also publish longer pieces (which we’ve sometimes called ‘Prognoses’) to identify and interrogate the broader themes of a festival, linking to relevant material from our archive and offering new perspectives on broader issues and trends. Each of these is written by a Sick of the Fringe writer and focuses on a particular theme or aspect of their experience. They offer wider-ranging analysis than the diagnoses, but are still committed to the core purpose of The Sick of the Fringe – offering new ways of writing about art and performance that illuminates the links between the strategies and concerns of artists, scientists and medical professionals.
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Our Diagnosers are NOT required to have traditional writing skills or specific qualifications. We hope that the whole process - of watching shows, reflecting on shows and writing about them helps us and our audiences link the arts with social issues, and see new futures and new possibilities.