Melbourne Fringe Festival returns to Geelong with an eclectic three night program you can’t miss

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Melbourne Fringe Festival returns to Geelong with an eclectic three night program you can’t miss

Net Worth. Credit: Sarah Walker

Melbourne’s weirdest festival is bringing the best of the best to Westend Geelong for an epic Geelong Arts Centre takeover this October.

Back for its 40th year in 2022, Melbourne Fringe Festival has announced an ambitious, bold and boisterous program full of weird, wonderful, thought-provoking and boundary-pushing art in what will be the first in-person Fringe Festival in three years. Packed with theatre, dance parties, interactive art, cabaret and side-splitting comedy from more than 3,400 independent artists over 150 venues, the Melbourne Fringe Festival has epitomised the most integral values of the arts by supporting artists and artworks that elicit boldness, honesty and experimentation, and through its dedication to inclusivity and diversity.

Running from 6 – 23 October 2022 in venues across the city, with bases at Trades Hall and Queen Victoria Market, the independent arts festival will be heading to Geelong for a special Melbourne Fringe Takeover event at the Geelong Arts Centre, allowing regional Victorians to get in on a piece of the colourful and wonderful action with three nights of eclectic performances at Westend Geelong.

Stay up to date with what’s happening in and around the region here

Running 20-22 October, Little Malop Street venue Westend Geelong will become abuzz with nine performances of six incredible shows, celebrating artistic exploration and creativity through dark comedy, melodic storytelling and daring self-expression.

The venue will host six curated shows with a lineup including the ever-so-sassy Miss Cairo, satirical genius Scout Boxall, the brash and brilliant Lou Wall, hilarious humourist Nicolette Minster, rising comic AJ Lamarque and the critically acclaimed Andrew McClelland, along with ever-eager accompanist Martine Wengrow.

“We are so excited to host the return of Melbourne Fringe to Geelong in 2022. By incorporating a unique catalogue of the industry’s most daring acts, we hope to provide the community with a tantalising preview of what’s to come for our creative city in the near future,” says Penny McCabe, Geelong Arts Centre Head of Programming. 

Andrew McClelland & Martine Wengrow – The Very Model of a Modern Major Musical

An exuberant hour of musical comedy written for a cast of ninety, performed by a cast of two.

Award-winning comedian (and celebrated international DJ) Andrew McClelland foolishly spent 2020 writing a full-length, full-cast modern comic operetta based on the musical clichés and ridiculous plots of Gilbert & Sullivan (but with the pesky sexism and colonialism removed, pro LGBTQIA+ themes inserted, and all the style, ridiculous fun, comedy, and catchy songs retained). At three hours and a cost of millions, that show will never be produced, but that isn’t stopping Andrew!

Joined by his over-talented, ever-eager accompanist and accomplice, Martine Wengrow, Andrew is determined to bring his musical vision to life! (Within the bounds of a Fringe show setting.). This loving spin on G&S tells the tale of a lovelorn corporate law-firm IT department seeking unlikely glory in their inter-firm, inter-gender footy comp. It appeals to both the passionate G&S fan and those with no idea what a G&S is.

Featuring stand up, musical virtuosity, non-mandatory sing-a-longs and now appearing in the perfectly fitting and completely accessible 19th century surrounds of Solidarity Hall, this is the version no-one should miss.

Lou Wall – Bleep Bloop

Multi Green Room Award winner and cabaret sensation Lou Wall has written their debut pop album … but all of the songs turned out, well, a bit #quirky … so now it’s a comedy show!
Britney gave us ‘Toxic’, Beethoven gave us Symphony No.5, and Ginuwine gave us the R’n’B smash hit, ‘Pony’. Lou brings you their magnum opus, a pop-culture comedy album about life’s biggest BLEEPS and smallest bloops. Now, what is a Bleep Bloop? Some would call it, “the epitome of a bad idea”, Lou’s mum would call it, “a f***ing S*** S***”, but Lou calls it a bleep bloop; a bad, yet in retrospect, iconic, decision.

In their first non-thematic comedy hour, Wall delivers an hour of their most intimate, regretful, and iconic personal anecdotes. Expect stories about Facebook Marketplace showdowns, rescuing a croissant from a drain with the SES and getting fined for swimming in the NGV fountain. This is Lou Wall at their most candid.

A raucous night of pop bangers, high energy meta-comedy, breathtaking ballads and gossip. Featuring original songs including ‘Short King’, ‘Gays Are Always Late’ and ‘Facebook Marketplace: The Musical’, Wall is officially making musical comedy cool again.

Nicolette Minster – Net Worth

Comedian Nicolette Minster is a child star whose career took a nosedive after starring featuring alongside Meryl Streep… at age three. After googling herself, has just discovered that her entire life is a lie.

Having recently survived the first year of childcare and written a horror film starring Rahda Mitchell “Girl at the Window” (surprisingly unrelated to the terror of daycare), Nicolette Minster’s Net Worth marks her highly anticipated return to the live comedy stage.

According to, Nicolette is a 6ft, 29 year old worth $15mil. Except she’s not. She is a 38 year old, new(ish) mum, who shops in the same Woolies she used to work in and despite being somewhat recognisable from her work on Sammy J and Kinne Tonight is not a candidate for the cover of Forbes. Or is she?

“Who Do You Think You Are?” meets 1995 movie blockbuster “The Net”, Net Worth is a story about being misrepresented on the internet and sliding into the DMs of absolute strangers in the pursuit of your online alter ego.

Nicolette Minster’s Net Worth is 50 minutes of comedy storytelling directed by award winning radio host and comic crooner Sammy J.

AJ Lamarque – English Breakfast

We’ve all been there. The water’s boiled. Everyone is waiting. And in that moment you ask yourself, do I have what it takes to make the perfect cup of tea?

Join AJ Lamarque in an uplifting and sentimental comedy show that tries to figure out what it means to be perfect in an imperfect world through AJ’s own journey as a Mixed Raced/Queer human. You’ll love it if you’ve ever felt like you’ve never fit within the mainstream. You’ll connect deeply if you’re Mixed Raced, a Person of Colour and/or Queer. You’ll hate it if you’ve ever said “Comedians can’t say anything anymore!”.

Scout Boxall – Buck Wild

Melbourne-based legend and Fringe favourite Scout Boxall brings their trademark manic energy to Geelong for the very first time with the critically acclaimed Buck Wild, a show that offers a peek inside their glitching, shimmering, elastic bipolar brain.

The show swings between darkly funny stories of Scout’s teenage stint in a psychiatric ward, a PowerPoint presentation ranking Arnott’s Assorted Creams, their unlikely fanatic love for Formula 1 and why dolphins are the perfect partner for men past their sexual prime.

Directed by Michelle Brasier, Buck Wild is an immersive hour of carefully organised cerebral chaos with interwoven stand-up and original songs that defies genre, gender, commonsense and the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual.

Miss Cairo – Breasts Become Her

Miss Cairo puts her breast foot forward to create her first ever SOLO show – all about her newly formed boobs… It’s a tale of two titties.

She will be exploring her relationship to her femininity since transitioning from a UK drag superstar, to an Aussie cabaret trans ICON, singing a mixture of original songs and some classic belters, all whilst doing it with her boobies hanging out and asking the question “When do I become a Woman?

Confident, self assured and for-the-lols delirious, Miss Cairo makes work about her intersecting communities, popular culture and her boobs. If you like self aware iconic 80’s films with leading ladies, trans rights and reparations you will love the show and come away questioning your own relationship to who you are. Will her first ever show go tits up? Let’s just hope this show’s not a one-tit wonder…


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A post shared by Miss Cairo (@prettymisscairo)

Whether you’re after comedic gold, theatrical solo storytelling, or experimental theatre, there’ll be something for you when Melbourne Fringe hits Geelong in October.

Tickets to shows are on sale now and are anticipated to sell quickly. You can find out more here