12 Of The Best Family-Friendly Shows Coming To This Year’s FRINGE WORLD

Monkey Drummers Fringe
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Words by Jenny Miraudo.

Nothing says summer in the city quite like a bevy of Fringe World shows; the sun sets late, there’s excitement in the air and you can be sure to catch something unique. If you have traded nights out for nights in – begging your children to go to sleep – there’s still plenty of Fringe options on offer. Treat your kids to the gift of a live performance with some of our top picks:

Amazing Drumming Monkeys

A show where cute puppet monkeys play the drums? Take our money! This show gives us Monkey Magic vibes with flashes of Nina Conti. Prepare to be enchanted by the pure joy that can only be summoned by drumming monkeys. This is a carefully curated show which has been performed all over Australia. Not to be missed.

Monkey Drummers FRINGE

Peter Combe in Wash Your Kids in Orange Juice

Peter Combe’s 1985 hit Mr Clickety Cane has over 3 million plays on Spotify, and I’m sure most of them are from our household. Combe has been writing catchy little ditties for years with some of his most endearing fans now parents themselves. Head along to this upbeat show to share in the magic with your children and make sure you master the ultimate call and response: Belly flop in a pizza? Eeewww!

Peter Combe Fringe

Family Rave Day – Under the Sea

This might not be quite the same as the raves of your youth, but will it guarantee some tuckered out toddlers? You bet! Head along to Rechabite Hall where a DJ will be spinning parent-poised tunes while the kids play in a magical underwater scene. Dressing up in your best nautical outfits is highly encouraged. This show has won numerous awards and is sure to sell out with only four sessions on offer.

The Dark Room for Kids

If you’re after something truly unique and have slightly older children, head along to the innovative Dark Room for Kids. Originally performed at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, this show immerses its audience in a video game simulation (picture the board game Nightmare to get the gist). In this adapted version, you and the kids will race to make it through the video game as improvised mayhem ensues. The Dark Room for Kids has won a swag of international awards and is worth every accolade.

Dark Room For Kids FRINGE

School of Air

They say it’s never too young to start playing a musical instrument and there’s no better place to start than the air guitar. In this workshop, kids will learn the secrets of the air guitar from some of the most acclaimed strummers around. They will have the opportunity to develop their own unique style and the last 20 minutes of the session is a group performance for the parents. This is such a sweet concept and is a Western Australian production taking place in the State Theatre Centre.

School of Air FRINGE

Wilbur the Optical Whale

This is a lovely show which would feel right at home in a snuggly bedtime picture book. It is a play about friendship and acceptance as two friends, Wilbur and Cecil, encounter the Starfish Meanie Gang in the deep sea. Prepare to be wowed by the visual displays, circus tricks and music, plus all performances feature integrated AUSLAN interpreting. Wilbur and the Optical Whale is gifted to us by Indelabilityarts:
a theatre company that provides performance opportunities for artists who identify as having a disability with the result being stunning original performance pieces articulating the lived experiences of the artists themselves.

Wilbur The WHale FRINGE

The Little HOO-HAA!

You may already be familiar with the mixed bag that is improvisational comedy, or the stellar work of local improv troupe The Big HOO-HAA. In a more family friendly performance than they usually deliver, two teams of improvisers will battle it out to win the heartiest laughs from perhaps the most scrupulous and unforgiving of audiences – children! Each performance is guaranteed to be entirely unique with the direction of the show resting on the whims of imagination.

Little Hoo Ha Fringe

The Greatest Magic Show!

This is a multi-award winning FRINGE WORLD favourite and its back in Perth for more wonders and whimsy after garnering international claim all across the globe, and this time they’ve got a whole new swag of illusions straight out of Vegas. Amongst many of those awards are a host Best Kids Shows at different Fringe’s, so you know quality is guaranteed.

Greatest Magic Show FRINGE

Brass Monkeys

If drumming monkeys aren’t quite your kids’ bag, how about some trumpeting ones? As you can see from the photo below the Brass Monkeys are not actual monkeys, rather the creators of previous popular show Children are Stinky. A combination of circus skills, comedy and of course, horns, it’s perfect for kids both big and small!

Brass Monkeys FRINGE


Another multiple Best Children’s Event award winner, Magnus Danger Magnus has a brand new, all ages electromagnetic show called KABOOM! If your little ones have a penchant for chaos (and let’s be honest, who’s don’t?), Magnus’s show is filled with explosions, fires, gizmos, gadgets and experiments, all while delving into the world of S.T.E.M – excellent brain fodder along with fun!


The Listies

Kids got the creativity bug more-so than science? The Listies have been rocking and rolling for over a decade and this comedy concert is great for kids of all ages – even you! They’re a hilarious duo who may not have what it takes to become music superstars on the world stage, but they sure know how to bring the house down with an insane mixtape of silly songs and stupid sketches.

The Listies Fringe

Matt Tarrant: FATE

Another mad cap show for the magically-inclined, Matt Tarrant brings a more sophisticated show that delves into the magic, mentalism and amazement. Forget the kids – expect to have your own mind blown as the multiple Adelaide Fringe Award Winner perform his epic new show, FATE.

Matt Tarrant Fringe

Head to the FRINGE WORLD Website for more info and tickets.

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