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March 14, 2024

Jamie Bucirde wants to make speed dating cool again

CityMag's resident sexologist Jamie Bucirde will host a free and "fun, non-cringey", no-app chance to check out potential partners this weekend, in partnership with CityMag.

  • Words: Isabella Kelly
  • Photo: Morgan Sette
  • Graphic: Mikaela Balacco

Jamie describes Our Fringe Fling as an “all inclusive, queer friendly, speed-dating event for under 35”.


Our Fringe Fling
March 17, from 4pm ’til 6pm
The Stag
 299 Rundle Street, Adelaide 5000


“It’s supposed to be this really fun, non-cringey way of meeting new people,” Jamie says.

Jamie told CityMag the event was inspired by “the Fringe dating energy”, having previously written about the “sexual liberation of Fringe”.

“The energy during Fringe time is always really fun and flirty, and I wanted to try and captivate that in a way that could kind of be prolonged after Fringe season is done,” she says.

“It’s like a Fringe show. I’m hosting this event with the pure goal of making people feel fun and comfortable.

“I also just really understand and recognise how bad dating apps are… I think [they] have really created this quite artificial, superficial way of just judging people based purely on their looks.”

Jamie says she thinks young people are coming back around to the idea of face-to-face dating after years of a dating app monopoly.

“Especially with Covid, we’re so used to everything being online now, and that’s really difficult for a lot of people,” she says.

“Just actually connecting with peoples’ vibes and energies in real time, versus taking a risk on a dating app where you’re meeting a stranger – I think that there’s a big demand for it.”

And she’s not the only one – the event initially booked out, with another 30 spots since added. The event now has space for 80 singles, so get in quick for your chance to see Jamie “make dating fun again”. She will emcee the event, using prepared ice-breakers to channel that nervous first-date energy for good.

“I’m going to have conversation starters and questions that kind of break the walls down and allow you to engage in real conversations that aren’t surface level,” Jamie says.

“People will come in…[with] the best version of themselves on, so I think that breaking that down and having people laugh from the get-go is going to get people more comfortable with themselves in order to really connect with other people.”

So just how speedy will these dates be? Think 5-10 minutes of conversation at a time. “I want it to be quite fast paced, but not so fast paced that it’s overwhelming,” Jamie says.

Participants will be encouraged to write down the attributes they are looking for in a partner, something Jamie compares to “manifesting your perfect partner”.

“Being able to recognise what you really want and what you’re looking for at the moment is something that we’re not really taught to do, and I think that intentional dating is really important.”

A qualified sexologist, cabaret performer and excellent sex columnist (though we may be a little biased), Jamie will be bringing her personal and professional backgrounds into hosting the event.

“I’m the queen of dating, so I’m really excited to give other people some tips and tricks to have the best dating experience they can,” she says.

Jamie may intervene when she sees a pair struggling to settle into their speed date, though the participants are welcome to stop her.

“People have the right to consent or not consent to me intervening… I definitely don’t want to like, over-control a situation. Everyone can navigate those situations themselves,” Jamie says.

“I just wanted to create a space where you can actually meet people face to face in like a fun, non-awkward way and just see if you actually vibe with people in real time.”

Jamie’s advice for those attending? Don’t be nervous! Easier said than done though, we’re sure.

“Just come in with no expectations. Be yourself,” she says.

“Dating in general is always really awkward, and uncomfortable, and a bit fumbly, and I think that leaning into the [discomfort] of dating is a really great way to get used to it and just have fun with it.”

While the event is open to people of all sexualities, Jamie says the queer-friendliness of the day was of special concern to her.

“I think there’s really not enough queer spaces in Adelaide that create that safe environment,” she says.

“I’m really really… excited for the queer community to get involved in this. I really want to celebrate them and make it a really easy space to meet other queer people.”

Jamie says the event will be a “sticker or colour situation” to group people, making sure “the heteros are with heteros, [and] the queers are with queers”.

In partnership with CityMag, The Stag Public House, and Mismatch Brewing, Our Fringe Fling is currently set to be a one-time only event, but if you can’t make it this time there may still be hope! Jamie told CityMag she would love to make it a regular thing, should Adelaide’s singles stay interested.

With a final 30 tickets added due to demand, register for free for the chance to meet the love of your life! Or to spend two hours having fun conversations with new people. Our Fringe Fling is being hosted at The Stag on Rundle Street this Sunday, March 17, from 4:00-6:00pm, though Jamie encourages attendees to keep the dates going through the night.

Connect with Jamie on Instagram to stay in the loop.

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