Call for Fringe shows to support Pussy Riot

Published: 19 August 2012
Reporter: David Chadderton

There has been a call for shows at the Edinburgh Fringe to show their support for the campaign to free the Russian punk band Pussy Riot, convicted of "hooliganism" by a Russian court last week.

Novelist and literary manager of London's Finborough Theatre Van Badham, who has directed The Economist at C Nova, has called for all acts performing on the Fringe on Monday 20 August to include the words "Free Pussy Riot" in their curtain call: "You can shout it, you can write it on your head, wear it on a t-shirt, display it on a sign—do anything, just let your audience know that you are backing this cause".

The intention is said to be to "get this message into the world media", although the world's media seems to be already full of the story of the conviction of 24-year-old Maria Alekhina, 23-year-old Nadezhda Tolokonnikova and 29-year-old Ekaterina Samucevich for performing a "punk prayer" in a priests-only section of Moscow's Cathedral of Christ the Saviour in February in protest against the Russian Orthodox Church's alleged support of Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin. They could face a seven-year gaol term for the one-minute protest performance.