Adelaide Fringe defies the odds as it shows the world the way ahead

The Adelaide Fringe has defied the odds to successfully present the largest festival in the world during the global pandemic.

Despite the challenges of presenting performances in a Covid world, and with initial uncertainty about audience confidence, Adelaide Fringe is projected to have sold sold 630,000 tickets to a value of $16.4million.

Reduced capacities and a decrease in the number of registered shows due to international border closures did not stop audiences coming from interstate with 73,710 tickets to date sold to people visiting South Australia.

Adelaide Fringe Director and CEO Heather Croall said she is delighted by the significant opportunity the festival has created for artists and audiences to engage in arts and culture after an extraordinary year.

“All eyes were on us,” she said. “We collaborated widely and were committed to putting this Adelaide Fringe on for the people of South Australia and creating a platform for artists to perform once again.

“We are so thankful for the support from South Australians who got behind Fringe this year.”

The festival operated under Covid-safe guidelines from scanning the QR codes upon entry to every venue, using the e-ticketing system and wearing masks in venues selling more than 50 per cent capacity.

This year’s program was made up of 71 per cent South Australian shows compared to 52 per cent in 2020.

“Because of the international travel ban, it was an opportunity for South Australian artists to shine in their hometown when usually they would be performing in all corners of the globe, so we really did have the best that the country has to offer, right here at Fringe,” Croall said.

Premier Steven Marshall said the festival “has defied the odds and once again brought to life the city and the wider state”.

“It is remarkable what event organisers, artists, venues and audiences have been able to participate in together over the last 31 days and nights,” he said.

“South Australia has worked hard to be able to stage such a world class event and I am thrilled to see the success of Adelaide Fringe especially in the Covid times. The hundreds and thousands of attendees have filled the bars, hotels, venues and restaurants of our State, which is so welcomed after such a tough year.

“There certainly was a buzz all over the state and it was exciting to see audiences out and about, throwing their support behind this amazing festival.”