08/19/2011 01:31 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Edinburgh Fringe Festival Takes On Current Events (VIDEO)

In a year filled with huge stories and historic milestones, the world's largest arts festival has its hands full depicting, reinterpreting, and subverting it all. In the BBC video below, UK arts heavy-hitter Will Gompertz investigates the 2011 Edinburgh Fringe Festival and its fascination with the topical.

From the comedians roasting Rupert Murdoch's defensive wife to the rehearsals for '1001 Nights,' a play colored by the Arab revolutions earlier this year, many of the works use definitive 2011 narratives as jumping-off points. Audiences in recent years have come in record numbers, and there's little doubt that this is related to the accessibility of some of the work being presented.

But does a focus on current events make it harder for art to be universal? Or is all art inherently political?