James Colley and Lauren Eisinger have never shied away from big ideas.
The two first worked together creatively during Science Revue last year with James as director and Lauren as stage/props manager. Only two days before opening night James jokingly requested a 13-foot Trojan horse head for a sketch and Lauren diligently went about making the magic happen. It is with this ambitious attitude and passion for the absurd that they bring you this year’s Verge Festival. The geodesic Verge dome has been erected on the front lawns, non-election related chalk drawings have begun to spread across Eastern Avenue, and wooden sculptures adorn the law lawns. But this is just the beginning.
Kicking off yesterday and running for another nine days, Verge Festival is the largest arts and cultural event on the university calendar. Lauren and James’ program of ‘compulsory fun’ allows you to watch, play and interact. One of the main goals of the festival was to make it simply impossible to miss.
“We wanted to create a space that you have to physically to go out of your way to avoid. We want to engage people that have never been engaged in Verge before. That’s why there is going to be colour right under your feet on Eastern Avenue, why we have this huge dome to create a central hub,” says James.
The extensive program includes at least three free events every day including comedy, music and ‘Inflatable Day’, where giant slides, human foosball and inflatable gladiatorial arenas will occupy the front lawns. James’ personal highlights include The Magical Music of Disney, the Sydney Youth Orchestra playing childhood classics while clips are projected in the Great Hall, and Human vs Zombies, a giant campus-wide nerf gun war, both of which have already sold out. The closing night party, a comedy dance party extravaganza, is only $10 and features The Axis of Awesome and DJ Tom Loud as back-to-back headliners both of whom have previously sold out shows in Edinburgh.
“I want this to be a festival that changes every day. If you come into the dome there will be something new, something different every single day,” James says.
For example, ‘Spot the Difference’, coordinated by the Fine Arts Society in Jane Foss Russell, will grow over the course of the ten day festival, as more and more coloured balls are added to the installation. The Verge Festival Awards, Harry Potter Trivia, Hermes Launch, and the 24-hour comedy show are back from previous years, and a number of newer creative clubs and societies are coordinating events as well.
For the full program, visit http://www.vergeartsfestival.com/.