Chief Executive of Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society Steps Down

News   Chief Executive of Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society Steps Down
Kath M. Mainland, who has been chief executive of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society for the last seven years, is to step down from the post, to take up a new position as executive director of the Melbourne Festival in Australia in February 2016.

She has had a long association with the Fringe, beginning her career in 1991 when she first joined the Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society as an administrative assistant. Originally from Orkney, Scotland, she has worked in Edinburgh's Festivals ever since, working as a production coordinator and event producer of many of Scotland's major festivals and events.

In 2005 she became general manager of the Edinburgh International Book Festival, and was administrative director there until 2009 when she took up the newly created post of chief executive of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society. She was awarded a CBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours list in 2014.

The Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society, established in 1958, is a registered charity that exists to support all participants, industry professionals, media and audience members who attend the Fringe from all around the world, and to produce accurate and up-to-date information and ticketing for the audience, and to raise the profile of the festival as a whole.

During her tenure, the Edinburgh Festival Fringe has seen significant growth with 1,216 more shows in the 2015 program than in 2009 and 48 more venues involved. This year, the Fringe Society also announced record-breaking figures following the 2015 Fringe with an estimated 2,298,090 tickets issued for shows across Edinburgh.

In a press statement, she commented, "I love the Fringe and I have lived in Edinburgh for over twenty years because of it. I'm immensely proud of the Fringe Society staff and their achievements – I have had the opportunity to work with an amazingly hardworking, imaginative and talented group of people. I'd especially like to take this opportunity to thank all the creative souls who take part in the Fringe and make it what it is – the world’s largest, most renowned open-access arts festival. Every year artists from all over the world travel to this great festival city to bring audiences their extraordinary work, and it’s because of them that the Fringe is so successful, and Scotland has such a unique cultural event to be proud of." The 2016 Festival Fringe will run Aug. 5-29. For further information on the Fringe and the Society, visit

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