Perth is hosting its month-long Fringe World Festival. Billed as the third biggest fringe festival in the world, the Fringe Festival in Perth has a 30-day full program for events.  It kick starts on January 22 and will culminate on February 21.

Perth Fringe festival organisers exuded the confidence that it would transform the city into a hub of cultural activity. More than 700 events and performances will be taking place across 150 venues in the metropolitan areas as well as in the regional hubs of Perth.

One major highlight of the Fringe World Festival 2016 will be the launch of Fringe World Fairground at Elizabeth Quay. From January 29 to March 6, the fairground will offer free entertainment.  The impressive waterfront development has been under construction for four years.  It was built at a cost of AU$440 million, reports ABC News.

“We think having fringe activity at the quay is the perfect way for people to be introduced to the new city space,” Fringe World director Amber Hasler said.

Meanwhile, Western Australian Premier Colin Barnett officially opened the Fringe World Festival yesterday, January 21. The organisers also said events at Perth Fringe festival will have heavy participation from local performers. More artists will be coming from other states and overseas. This year, more venues have been added to the Fringe Festival. They include Mandurah, Scarborough, Fremantle, Midland and Geraldton.

Most Fringe festivals follow an ‘open access’ policy; it means anyone can perform. However, the Fringe Festival in Perth has set a registration fee of AU$300. Responding to the complaints by some artists that the costs for participating in the Fringe festival are high, Hasler claimed that the Perth festival was the most affordable in the world.

“We’re very proud that last year over $4 million net box office went back to the artists directly,” she said. Hasler also pointed out that prior to the Perth Fringe festival,  the local performers had very few opportunities to showcase their work.