The Sick of the Fringe

Conceived by Brian Lobel and Co-Directed with Tracy Gentles (Director ICC)

Developed and Produced by In Company Collective

The Sick of the Fringe disrupts traditional, commercial views about 'value' in performance, shifting focus away from aesthetic, formal judgements to instead underscore a different sort of value in performances dealing with health, mental health, wellbeing, and the body. With an overarching ethos of care and community, TSOTF champions the intersection of art (with particular emphasis on performance) with science, research, personal experience, and open conversation. TSOTF strives to platform as many voices as possible.

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Originally commissioned by the Wellcome Trust and supported by Arts Council England



View the full roundup of Diagnoses from 2016 here and 2015 here

Co-director Brian Lobel and writer Hannah Maxwell reflected on some of the learnings and aims of our inaugural 2015 programme at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in Contemporary Theatre Review

Co-director Brian Lobel took some time to reflect again after the 2016 programme in the BMJ Opinion

In 2016 two critics from the Scotsman tried their hand at writing diagnoses, which were published alongside two diagnoses from seasoned TSOTF writers

This article in the Independent discusses our first year, alongside another programme called Death at the Fringe

A video of Brian Lobel discussing TSOTF in 2015 can be found on BBC Love Festivals

In 2015, Brian talked with Lydia Thomson from Exeunt Magazine about the need for TSOTF

Brian Lobel talks with ArsTechnica about being frustrated by the lack of nuanced conversation, particularly about issues of health, the body, trauma, illness, and disability, in the arts world, and how he hopes TSOTF can help platform these conversations.

Cathie Wright discusses the importance of awareness and environment in a review of our first year on the British Psychological Society website

A Younger Theatre profiled TSOTF during our first year


The Lead South Australia covered our preliminary visit to the Adelaide Fringe Festival in 2017

Fringe and Beyond

In August 2016, while the Edinburgh Fringe Festival was taking place, we commissioned writers across the UK to diagnose shows taking place in other locations. Check out those diagnoses here

In May 2017, we started diagnosing at the Folkestone Normal? Festival - you can read those diagnoses here



Read the Prognoses from our London Festival 2017 here.

Co-director Brian Lobel reported on the festival in the LADA newsletter

The Comedy Festival Where Medicine is the Best Laughter - from the Times

"Last weekend’s The Sick of the Fringe festival in London was an invigorating mix of performance and discussion exploring the body and the mind." - a profile on the London Festival in The Guardian, specifically profiling Jess Thom

Disability Arts Online writer Nina Muehlemann wrote about her experience at the festival, calling TSOTF "a very welcome (no pun intended) and multi-faceted addition to the UK’s art and performance landscape"

Ham & High previewed our London Festival by talking to Brian Lobel and profiling a few of our artists

Maddy Costa talks to Busty Beatz of Hot Brown Honeys about her residency at the Wellcome Collection during the London Festival, saying the question she found herself asking over and over during the project was, “Who has the authority? Like really, at its basic point, who has the authority here?" - Exeunt Magazine

DARC Collective documented the event - check out their beautiful pictures here

We worked with the Deaf and Hearing Ensemble during our London Festival, and this is a British Sign Language (BSL) video talking about the London festival The Sick of the Fringe.