The film festival Fringe! returns to the East End of London, and runs from April 12 -15. It’s a bold, cutting-edge selection of films and events that offers a real alternative to the LGBT cinema mainstream.
The opening film is the first feature from Travis Mathews, I Want Your Love, and it builds on the experience of making his ground-breaking In Their Room series of shorts. Andrew Haigh, the director of Weekend, said of the film, “Intimate, sexy and unflinchingly honest, I Want Your Love is a bold film with rare insight into the uncensored lives of a generation of gay men”. The screening is followed by a Q&A with Travis Mathews, hosted by Ben Walters.
The festival also features the UK premieres of Audre Lorde: The Berlin Years 1984- 1992 (Dir. Dr Dagmar Schultz, Germany, 2012); (A)sexual (Dir. Angela Tucker, USA, 2011) and Private Romeo (Dir. Alan Brown, USA, 2011).
As well as new films, there is also a series of “revamped classics”. The London Rollergirls present the Brooklyn “attitude and motorbike epic” Gang Girls Trilogy; and there is a New Queer Cinema retrospective, featuring High Art, Young Soul Rebels and Swoon. And how could you resist a late-night screening of In Bed with Madonna hosted by “East End Tranny with a Fanny, Holestar”? The night will also witness the premiere of In Bed with Holestar, showcasing some of East London’s finest, and you can dress up as Madonna throughout the ages to be in with a chance to win prizes.
There is also art, with Facing You, a photo-exhibition exploring the notion of queer; artifacts and filmic memories in After Louie; aerobics meets performance art in Dragercise; as well as Tweet the Dawn, a 4am interactive twitter performance event.
Fringe! truly lives up to its title, and now in its second year is proving to be the new kid on the block to watch.