Vancouver Fringe Festival

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    Dissolve

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    What is the Fringe?

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    rEvolver Festival

 
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Theatre Wire to Dissolve “No Fun City”

April 14, 2015

Attention Theatre Lovers! Introducing Theatre Wire

You like independent theatre. Of course you do! You come to the Fringe and see shows from around the world and around the corner. But what do those local groups do the rest of the year? And what about those groups that “graduated” from the Fringe?

We’ve been working hard to launch an exciting new project that will support Vancouver’s independent theatre artists and help you stay on top of the exciting work those artists create year round.

It’s called Theatre Wire.

Not only will Theatre Wire keep you informed, but it’ll keep you entertained too! Local funny lady Sara Bynoe will interview local artists who’ll dish on audition horror stories, the Georgia Straight’s theatre critic, Colin Thomas, will offer playwriting advice, there’ll be Vancouver theatre history, and more! And you can even buy tickets through Theatre Wire! The website is nearly ready, but in the meantime, sign up to receive bi-weekly emails.

Fringe alumna, Emmelia Gordon, play 16 characters in Meghan Gardiner's award winning play, Dissolve.

Fringe alumna, Emmelia Gordon, play 16 characters in Meghan Gardiner’s award winning play, Dissolve.

Theatre Wire is kicking off with shameless hussy productions’ Dissolve, starring Fringe alumna and Jessie Award winner, Emmelia Gordon, who portrays 16 characters that challenge us to change our thinking and behavior surrounding alcohol, drugs, and sexual assault. The show runs May 5-9 at Studio 1398 on Granville Island. Click here for more info and to buy tickets.

Quick on the heels of Dissolve come select shows that are part of the rEvolver Festival, which runs May 20-31. The four Fringe-y shows include 2011 Pick of the Fringe winner, The Progressive Polygamists, Jeff Gladstone’s Hell of a Girl, Double Recessive (which toured the Fringe circuit in 2014 as Project Gingervitis), and last year’s Pick winner, Caws and Effect. Single tickets are $20 or you can buy a 3-pack and see 3 of these 4 shows for just $39. But we’re only selling rEvolver Fest tickets till May 13, so get yours now!

Exclusive Preview of On the Fringe

Fringe Pollinators got a sneak peek of On the Fringe, a new documentary. David Jordan interviews Nancy Kenny, Natalie Watson, and TJ Dawe about the Fringe circuit and the film. Photo by Bruce McPherson Photography.

Fringe Pollinators got a sneak peek of On the Fringe, a new documentary. David Jordan interviews Nancy Kenny, Natalie Watson, and TJ Dawe about the Fringe circuit and the film. Photo by Bruce McPherson Photography.

What’s it really like to be a Fringe artist and tour Festivals across the country? Fringe Pollinators had an exclusive opportunity to find out on March 21 at a sneak peek of On the Fringe, a documentary following Nancy Kenny, whose Roller Derby Saved My Soul toured the 2014 Fringe circuit, including a Pick of the Fringe winning stop in Vancouver.

At the preview, Fringe Executive Director, David Jordan, interviewed Nancy Kenny, along with filmmaker Natalie Watson, and “Fringe God” TJ Dawe. Nancy explained that Bruce Horak (of This Is Cancer) encouraged her to make the documentary and when she won the Canadian Association of Fringe Festivals’ touring lottery, she took it as a sign. Although they’d never made a documentary film before (and had never met before!), Nancy, Natalie, and Cory Thibert set off on a four month journey to capture the Fringe circuit magic.

Fringe Pollinators are some of the most engaged Fringers around, so it’s no surprise they asked great questions. One Pollinator asked if the film would include stories about billet hosts. Natalie described a scene where Sam Mullins (known for Tinfoil Dinosaur and Weaksauce) showed off a micro dorm room he stayed in in Winnipeg, while in the next scene, Chris Wilson of Peter ‘n’ Chris can be seen diving into his billet host’s pool after complaining about the hardships of billeting.

On the Fringe is currently in post-production and perhaps you’ll see the final version at a film (or Fringe) festival soon! Thanks to all the Fringe Pollinators for coming out (and for supporting the Fringe); to Nancy, Natalie, and TJ; and to H.A.V.E. Culinary Training Society for tasty hors d’oeuvres!

Truth or Dare?

Truth:
Do you like participating in artistic experiences that break genre expectations?
We bet you do.

DAREU! is the latest collaboration with The Only Animal, Vancouver’s premier site-specific theatre company. The Fringe has been working with The Only Animal, who mentored artists in our site-specific program, Onsite, which brought theatre to unexpected spaces on Granville Island and beyond since 2011. For the 2015 Festival, we’re doing something a little bit different.

DAREU! artists exploring space on Granville Island during their first workshop. Photo by Ahmad Saeid.

DAREU! artists exploring space on Granville Island during their first workshop. Photo by Ahmad Saeid.

Thanks to a generous contribution from the RBC’s Emerging Artists Project, The Only Animal will be mentoring young artists to create augmented reality videos that can only be viewed when you’re in the space!

Artists participating in the program have already started working on their projects. At the first workshop, Truman Wong and Brandon Ho from RBC visited to present the cheque to artists! Thanks RBC!

We’re really excited to see what the artists come up with. Be sure to visit in September for your chance at a totally new theatre experience (and don’t forget your smart phone)!

Happy National Volunteer Week!

Did you know that April 12 to 18 is National Volunteer Week? And that this is the Week’s 74th year? National Volunteer Week started in 1943 to thank women for their efforts on the home front during World War Two. Since then, the Week has expanded to become the largest celebration of civic participation in Canada.

Fringe volunteers collectively donate around 11,000 hours per year! Photo by Clayton Wong.

Fringe volunteers collectively donate around 11,000 hours per year! And our sponsor, Shear Comfort, makes it that much easier to support them. Photo by Clayton Wong.

Canadians donated nearly 2 billion hours in 2013—approximately 11,000 of those hours were donated to the Fringe! Thank you so, so much to all of you who help make the Festival happen every year, and to all of you who keep coming back! Fringe volunteers tell us they want to support arts and culture in Vancouver, they love theatre, many want to gain work experience or improve their English skills, and an overwhelming number point to the highly social atmosphere of the Festival as a reason to volunteer.

In 2014, Shear Comfort joined the Fringe to support our Volunteer Program and their contribution funded items such as the new volunteer coordination software and volunteer perks like t-shirts and the training day BBQs. We’re happy to announce that Shear Comfort is back for 2015! (They have a new website BTW—and they revel in their silly side on their blog.)

Thanks again to all the volunteers out there! Keep your eyes peeled for volunteer opportunities with the Fringe. We start recruiting in June!

Get a Special Offer from car2go by Answering a Nonsensical Question

car2go is a carsharing organization designed to complement multiple forms of transportation including cycling, walking, transit, and station-based carsharing services. car2go’s unique model offers its members the ability to make one way trips, pay by the minute, and park almost anywhere. There are no reservations required, just jump in and go!

car2go offers fun activities (and free driving minutes) during the Fringe, but they're also offering some now, as well as a deal for new members! Photo by Michael Sider.

car2go offers fun activities (and free driving minutes) during the Fringe, but they’re also offering some now, as well as a deal for new members! Photo by Michael Sider.

As a supporter of the Fringe you are invited to take advantage of a special offer from car2go for $15 registration +30 minutes of driving time. To redeem, just register using the promotion code FRINGE1530 at Vancouver.car2go.com. Please note that a $2 annual fee will apply for ICBC insurance and is donated to charity. Register now and receive your member card with enough time to car2go to upcoming Fringe performances and score reserved parking on Granville Island!

Already a member? Email Vancouver@car2go.com with “ATTN Marketing” in the subject line before April 30, 2015 and tell us whether rubber chickens can fly or not—oh and your username—and we will apply 15 minutes of driving to your account! Remember you must answer this all important question to receive the minutes.

Mini-Fringe March Madness

March 19, 2015

March Fringe Madness

TJ Dawe spoke to Andrea Warner from the Georgia Straight about Marathon and his personal journey.

TJ Dawe spoke to Andrea Warner from the Georgia Straight about Marathon and his personal journey.

The Fringe may be far from your mind—the Festival is six months away—but we’re having a mini-Fringe till March 29 with Marathon and Virtual Solitaire running back to back most nights at Studio 1398 on Granville Island—and the press is excited too!

“Don’t be alarmed – you haven’t slept through the summer… if you missed the Fringe Festival last fall, here’s your chance to catch some of that frenetic Fringe goodness, which by the way goes wonderfully with a little side of spring break.” —Metro News
Marathon is equal parts art and personal exorcism, but it’s also entertainment. Balancing the heady and heavy with comedy and catharsis is Dawe’s specialty.” —the Georgia Straight

TJ Dawe sat down with CBC’s Sheryl McKay of North by Northwest for an interview about Marathon. And Virtual Solitaire‘s Dawson Nichols got personal with Vancouver Presents, revealing his former relationship with the CIA and a cremation service in California.

Get your tickets today and see what everyone’s talking about!

Celebrate World Theatre Day with the Fringe!

Theatre is pretty important. We organize a whole Festival around it—and we put on shows outside the Festival—and we support Vancouver’s theatre community by encouraging you to see more theatre. That’s why World Theatre Day makes us feel warm and fuzzy.

Thanks to Krzysztof Warlikowski and World Theatre Day, you're getting a very special deal on March 27!

Thanks to Krzysztof Warlikowski and World Theatre Day, you’re getting a very special deal on March 27!

World Theatre Day was started in 1961 by the International Theatre Institute and is held every March 27. Many organizations put on special events and a special message is created by a well known theatre maker. This year’s message comes from Polish director Krzysztof Warlikowski. He’s really deep. But he’s on point when he says “there is nothing that can reveal hidden passions better than the theatre.”

And who doesn’t feel passionate when they can see two great pieces of theatre for half price?! That’s right! To celebrate World Theatre Day, you can see Marathon and/or Virtual Solitaire on March 27 for $12.50 each—that’s just $25 for both shows! Enter coupon code THEATREISGREAT when buying your tickets to activate the discount.

Want to be creative like TJ Dawe?

TJ Dawe has been creating and performing theatre for years, but that doesn’t mean his projects just happen. There are a thousand ways to get in the way of being creative. And he knows them all. There are also very specific ways to stimulate creative ideas, and to see them through to completion.

TJ Dawe can help you come up with a creative practice --because creativity is good for you. Photo by Diane Smithers.

TJ Dawe can help you come up with a creative practice –because creativity is good for you. Photo by Diane Smithers.

TJ has come to believe in the healing power of creativity. We’d all be better off if each of us has something we did—writing, dancing, painting, photography, slam poetry, woodworking, podcasting, sketching, singing, crafting, playing an instrument—on a regular basis, whether there’s any potential to make money doing it or not.

“In our society, we tend to relegate creativity to either a hobby or a job,” TJ said, “but it’s more helpful to think of it like exercise. You do it because it’s good for you. And because it feels good. No expectations beyond that.”

TJ and his partner Lindsay Robertson will present their Discover Your Creativity workshop on March 28, which will focus on activating, sustaining, and involving others in a creative endeavour. Each of us will find one of these three areas easier than the other two. And each of us will find one of them more challenging.

“My blind spot is in the social sphere,” TJ explains. “I tend not to reach out to others to collaborate.” For his creative practice, TJ’s been playing the guitar, taking lessons from an instructor, and regularly playing at an open mic. “If I’m accountable to others, it helps me get over that particular block, and it helps me actually stick to my plan. And in the end I spend time doing this thing I really enjoy doing.”

Each workshop participant will come up with a plan for what creative thing they’d like to make a part of their life, which incorporates their habits and blocks.

Join TJ on March 28 for the Discover Your Creativity workshop. Visit the Facebook event or the Event Page at nineriverswellness.com for more information and details on how to register.

Hot Copy: a Publicity Workshop for Fringe Artists and Creative Types

Have you tried to get media attention for your event but you’re not getting results? Are you a complete newbie? Or are you a marketing hot shot that craves even more media coverage? We have the solution! Deb Pickman, co-artistic director and ensemble member of the Vancouver theatre company shameless hussy productions, and Communications & Marketing Specialist for Theatre at UBC will return to host Hot Copy, a marketing and publicity workshop to help you get the media attention you need!

Media maven, Deb Pickman, will be leading a publicity workshop for Fringe artists and other independent artists, April 13.

Media maven, Deb Pickman, will be leading a publicity workshop for Fringe artists and other independent artists, April 13.

While the workshop will focus on marketing a Fringe Festival show, the low and no-cost tips and tricks are ideal for independent artists looking to promote themselves and their events.

Learn the basics of a press release and when to contact media outlets, what are the key elements to choosing promotional images for posters and flyers, crafting your 30 second elevator speech, social media tips, and more. Plus, Deb will answer as many questions as time allows!

This workshop will be held on April 13 at 7:00pm at Carousel Theatre on Granville Island. It is free for artists participating in the 2015 Vancouver Fringe Festival and $10 for everyone else. Please RSVP to publicity[at]vancouverfringe.com

More about Deb Pickman: A veteran of the Fringe circuit, Deb co-created, performed in, and publicized noted and notorious Festival hits for over a decade—and went on to become a specialist in social media and all aspects of publicity for the arts. Aside from her work with shameless hussy, she currently holds the position of Communications & Marketing Specialist for Theatre at UBC where she earned her BA in Theatre. Deb is a recipient of the Vancouver Sun People’s Choice Award for Outstanding Actress and two Jessie Richardson Award nominations. See her next on stage in the hussies premiere of Love Bomb, Sept. 25 – Oct. 10 as part of the Firehall Arts Centre’s 2015/16 season. More at shamelesshussy.com.

We’re Hiring!

Being a Fringe staffer makes you soooo good-looking. Photo by My City Photos.

Being a Fringe staffer makes you soooo good-looking. Photo by My City Photos.

The Festival is coming and we’ve starting hiring for seasonal positions! Be sure to check our website regularly as openings will be posted over the next few months.

First up is the all-important Communications Coordinator, who writes and posts our newsletters as well as the bulk of our social media (and manages a few other projects too).

Next is the indispensable Assistant Volunteer Coordinator, who helps organize our nearly 600 volunteers who run the Festival on the ground.

We’ll start recruiting volunteers in June, so stay tuned for news of the volunteer application being available online.

And a special shout out of thanks to our Partner, Shear Comfort, who provides crucial support for our volunteer program. We couldn’t do it without you, Shear Comfort!

The Theatre Scene

Just a taste of what Vancouver has to offer in the way of Theatre

 

Obaaberima (top) tells the story of crossing continents while Cultivation (bottom) questions systems of faith.

maladjusted
March 19-28
Firehall Arts Centre
Three personal perspectives on the mental health care system are presented in maladjusted, which will be performed as forum theatre—where the piece will be performed twice each evening. In a second version, audience members are invited to participate and intervene in the story to explore its conflict.

Obaaberima 
March 24-April 4
The Cultch
Imprisoned in Canada for committing a violent crime, a young man from Ghana tells his cellmates a story on the eve of his release. Through storytelling, dance, and live music, Obaaberima (“girlboy”) chronicles a young African-Canadian’s journey across continents, genders, races, and sexualities. Tickets from $19!

Cultivation 
March 25-28
Pacific Theatre
A discharged soldier shows up at a charismatic church retreat: he won’t participate, but refuses to leave. An intense relationship with the pastor’s daughter brings into question the systems of faith—religious and political—we create in order to survive. A script-in-hand staging of a new play by Krista Marushy.

We know Fringers love checking out new plays, so you get 15% off admission to evening performances of Cultivation! Promo available online only, with code FRINGEPT.


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