THE Great Yorkshire Fringe has sold 20,000 tickets in the opening weekend of its ten-day run in Parliament Street, York.

Six shows in this inaugural festival of comedy, theatre, music, magic, cabaret and family entertainment have sold out, including German comedian Henning Wehn's two performances of Eins, Zwei, DIY last Friday and Saturday night.

"The first ever Great Yorkshire Fringe festival has got off to a flying start," said director and founder Martin Witts. “We've sold more than 20,000 tickets over the opening weekend, smashing all our expectations. Henning Wehn, the German Comedy Ambassador to the UK, sold out both his shows in our largest venue, the 400-seat White Rose Rotunda, and with more than 200 names on the waiting list, he's now announced an extra show for this Sunday (AUGUST 2) at 3pm due to overwhelming demand."

As well as Wehn's third show – Eins, Zwei, Drei! –another sell-out was Mitch Benn's That Was The Future last Saturday, while upcoming gigs in the White Rose Rotunda by Paul Merton's Impro Chums on Friday and American comedian Reginald D Hunter's new show on Saturday  are fully booked. So too is cheeky chappy Rob Beckett's gig in The Turn Pot on Sunday, the closing day.

"We're thrilled with how things are going but people really should book in advance for any of the remaining shows they want to see this week to ensure they get in!” advised Martin.

The Lord Mayor of York, Cllr Sonja Crisp, inspected Tykes Green, the festival’s village green setting last Thursday, and has confirmed she will support the event by attending three shows this week in an official capacity.

York Press:

Cabaret troupe Slightly Fat Features with the Lord Mayor of York, Cllr Sonia Crisp, at Monday's performance of Variety Soup. Picture by Kippa Matthews

On Monday, Cllr Crisp attended the York branch of the Club & Institute Union (CIU) and the Great Yorkshire Fringe's co-presentation of cabaret troupe Slightly Fat Features during their festival-long run of Variety Soup in the Turn Pot.

On Thursday, in the White Rose Rotunda, she will be entertained by The Supreme Fabulettes, the all-male close-harmony girl group, styled and directed by William Baker and the rest of the creative team behind Kylie Minogue's shows. On Saturday, she will watch Matt Tetford's drag comedy musical extravaganza, Margaret Thatcher Queen of Soho, in The Turn Pot.

The Great Yorkshire Fringe is presenting more than 120 shows over its ten days. Tickets can be booked on 01904 500600 or at