Page last updated at 09:07 GMT, Wednesday, 10 June 2009 10:07 UK

Van Outen joins line-up at Fringe

Denise van outen
Denise van Outen will star in a one-woman musical comedy

Television and stage star Denise van Outen is to make her Edinburgh Fringe debut in a new one-woman musical comedy show called Blondes.

The programme for the 63rd Edinburgh Festival Fringe, which takes place in August, includes 34,265 performances of 2,098 shows in 265 venues.

Other famous names include Clive James, Julian Clary, Christopher Biggins and cricketing legend Henry Blofeld.

Fringe shows include music, comedy, theatre, dance, opera and art.

Foot-washing

Ms van Outen, 34, who recently married Lee Mead, the winner of TV talent search Any Dream Will Do, will star in a show at Underbelly's Pasture Cow Barn at the Reid Hall.

She will perform songs by blonde artists including Doris Day, Duffy, Mae West and Madonna, in a show written by Fringe veteran Jackie Clune.

The Fringe, which runs from 7 to 31 August, features shows at venues across the city and throughout each day, with more than 18,000 performers taking part.

Early morning shows include Breakfast with Burns and Shakespeare for Breakfast.

The Traverse theatre will run the World is Too Much: Theatre For Breakfast, which will feature work by David Greig, Zinnie Harris, Simon Stephens, Rona Munro and Che Walker.

Plays by Sarah Kane and David Mamet with jostle for attention alongside Foot-Washing For The Sole in which Adrian Howell washes and massages the feet of the audience.

Fringe shows offer commentary on topical issues such as the global recession, the aftermath of the invasion of Iraq and the conflict in Afghanistan.

The controversial policy of extraordinary rendition is examined in Rendition Monologues, while personal accounts from several witnesses of the Mumbai terror attack are retold in A Personal War.

 Kristen Schaal's award nominated 2008 show with Kurt Braunohler Double Down Hearts
Flight of the Conchords star Kristen Schaal with Kurt Braunohler

Puppetry continues to be one of the fastest growing elements in the Fringe programme with a range of shows from One Eye Gone to The Man Who Planted Trees.

The children's section offers family favourites such as Wind in the Willows and Treasure Island.

It also features innovative shows such as Dude! Where's My Teddy Bear? - a rock 'n' roll musical for the under-sevens.

Among many well-known names in the comedy section are Stewart Lee, Jo Caulfield, Daniel Kitson, Craig Hill, Jimmy Carr, Sean Hughes and Alistair McGowan.

McGowan will also appear in a show featuring the work of Noel Coward.

Cult TV hit Flight Of the Conchords is represented in the comedy section by two of its stars.

Rhys Derby brings It's Rhys Derby Time to the festival, while Kristen Schaal's award-nominated 2008 show with Kurt Braunohler, Double Down Hearts, also features in the programme.

BBC 'One Show' regular Hardeep Singh Kohli appears on the Fringe in his own show.

Launching the programme, Fringe chief executive Kath Mainland said: "The Edinburgh Festival Fringe is the greatest arts festival in the world. Nowhere else can you see such a variety of world-class talent and such a range of work and ideas in one place.

"Companies have travelled from over 60 countries to take part in the Fringe and I look forward to welcoming visitors from all over the world to this great festival city in August."



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