07/31/2012 01:37 pm ET

Edinburgh Fringe 2012: The 10 Most Creative And Provocative Shows (SLIDESHOW)

Every August, the Scottish capital of Edinburgh becomes host to the world’s largest arts festival. The Edinburgh Festival & Festival Fringe is known for its theater and comedy, but dance, visual art, and music are also represented.

The festival dates back to 1947, when eight theatre groups showed up to participate in the recently formed Edinburgh International Festival, only to be turned away at the door. Of course being committed theater artists, they took to the streets and performed anyway. In 1959 the Festival Fringe Society was formed, and the rest was history. Today, the festival functions without a selection committee. What’s so unique (and great) about the Fringe is that anyone can take part.

This year, there are so many shows--we're talking 2,695 to be exact--that it's impossible to see them all. Or if you're stuck in the States like us, you can "see" them vicariously through reviews and the enticing descriptions provided in the online program.

But hey a person can dream, right? We did our research and put together a wish list of the shows we'd see this year if we were going. Click through below, and let us know if you're planning on seeing any of them for real!

The 2012 Edinburgh Festival Fringe runs from August 3 - 27 in Edinburgh, Scotland.

Edinburgh Fringe Shows