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The Glamour & the Filth

August 18, 2016

Your Journey through the Glamour of Opening Night

Fringers posing for the My City Photos wedge wall! Photo by Paul Duchart.

We want you to FEEL IT ALL! And what better way than to kick off the Fringe with a celebration at Opening Night? And the exclusive performance from the wildly hilarious Butt Kapinski is just the beginning!

When you walk through the doors of Performance Works, you’ll be captivated by the Film Noir theme—should you dress the part as a glamorous starlet or the handsome brooding hero in a fedora? We leave that decision in your hands.*

As you make your way inside you may run into your favourite Fringers, including some of this year’s exciting artists. Rekindle a friendship with your Fringe friends or start a new one when you take a photo together at the My City Photos wedge wall.

Riveting conversation will ensue as you and your fellow Fringers sip cocktail samplers from The Liberty Distillery or try the food and drink options, including hors d’oeuvres from Dockside Restaurant and Emelle’s Catering, sliders from The Keg, ginger beer from The Great Jamaican, Pinot Grigio from Barefoot Wine & Bubbly, and various beverages from Big Rock Brewery. And don’t forget to admire the beautiful botanical creations from the Olla Urban Flower Project.

Eventually, it will be time to settle into the theatre where the Fringe’s Executive Director, David Jordan, will be hosting an exciting live auction with just three items to bid on! You’ll certainly have some extra cash since the tickets for Opening Night are only $50 this year! Who knows? You just might win yourself a brand new bike from Motorino or a night with Cause & Effect Circus, the team behind The New Conformity!

How fun does that sound? And that’s all before the featured performance! This exclusive show is not like the other shows at the Fringe, it will be a once in a lifetime, not to missed event! Come join us as we have fun fundraising, partying, and solving mysteries!

*While glamorous outfits and noir-esque costumes are welcome at Opening Night, they are not required. There is no dress code for this party!

Deanna Fleysher, aka Butt Kapinski, Reveals the Filth Behind Opening Night

Classic example of Butt making the audience part of the show! Photo by Nathaniel Mason

Critics and audiences raved about Butt Kapinski during the 2013 Vancouver Fringe—the show won the Volunteer Choice Award and the Cultchivating the Fringe Award. “Kapinski roams the audience and it’s both suspenseful and hilarious waiting to see how the story unfolds,” the Georgia Straight wrote about the performance, which included participation like we’ve never seen. “To say people surrendered themselves wholeheartedly to their roles would be an understatement.”

And now Butt is back to open the 2016 Fringe with an exclusive performance. We asked Deanna Fleysher, the woman behind the Dick, what audiences should expect and just what it is about Butt that resonates.

Fringe: What brings you the most joy in performing as Butt Kapinski?
Deanna Fleysher: The whole shebang gets me pretty fired up.

F: How did you come up with the Butt Kapinski character and act?
DF: We could say that Butt is a glorious melange of film noir, improv comedy, clown, bouffon, childhood speech impediments, Burning Man, literary scholarship, and gender confusion. Or we could say that sometimes you find yourself on a street corner in New York City wearing a trench coat, and you just know.

F: Was there a specific moment when you realized that you really had something good with Butt Kapinski?
DF: From the first moment I performed as Butt Kapinski, I knew I had something good. Then again, every time I am about to go out and perform as Butt Kapinski, I’m convinced it’s a bad idea.

F: In your opinion, why does Butt Kapinski resonate with your audience as much as it does?
DF: People who enjoy Butt Kapinski like film noir, like audience involvement, are interested in gender play, don’t particularly like film noir, hate audience involvement, and don’t give a shit about gender play. It’s a great group, overall.

F: Can you give us some clues as to what to expect from this exclusive performance at our Opening Night?
DF: Butt’s got a big case to solve, and this one involves the filthiest, most perverted, filthily violent filth anyone’s ever seen!

F: We know other Fringe artists will be involved. What can you tell us about that? Who will be joining you?
DF: There are many other Fringe artists involved: local favourites like Tara Travis and Travis Bernhardt, fresh meat like Windy Wynazz and Emily Newton, and international flavour such as The Birdman. Also a youth choir. They may or may not tell me beforehand what they are going to do in the show. They understand the rules of the game, but how they play is anybody’s guess.

F: Finally, how excited are you to return to the Vancouver Fringe Festival?

Experience Butt Kapinski for yourself at the Fringe’s Opening Night on September 6! Buy your tickets now!

Reminder: Volunteers and Billet Hosts Still Needed!

Whether you’re a certified Fringe lover who wants to help out in any way possible, or if you’re just looking for fun ways to get involved in the community, sign up for these opportunities! Hurry before it’s too late to receive all the great perks that come with being a Volunteer—including the amazing perk that’s just been added—all volunteers will get free tickets to see an Instant Theatre show at Havana! Apply now!

Billet Host Form
Volunteer Application

The Killer Fringe Bar Lineup!

Skye Wallace

Vancouver’s most entertaining musicians will be gracing the Barefoot Wine & Bubbly Stage at the Big Rock Brewery Fringe Bar this year! Whether you enjoy pop, jazz, rock, folk, funk, or music from around the globe, these artists will bring performances that will certainly appease your musical palate. If you’ve been looking through the Program Guide and you don’t know which artist you’d like to check out, don’t worry! Allow us to point you in the right direction!

Jody Glenham and the Dreamers have developed a reputation around the Vancouver music scene for their unique style. As Beatroute Magazine stated in 2015, “Jody Glenham has never been an artist who has settled into simple musical genres such as folk or country, but has etched her own niche into the side of the mountainous indie rock world.” Come see it for yourself on Wednesday, September 14!

On the following day, Skye Wallace will be gracing the Fringe Bar stage for the first time. Over the past few years she’s found success in adding her own original twist to the revered genre of folk rock, and now she’s coming to the Fringe to perform her very personal songs that make you feel what she’s feeling.

Then there is, of course, Tonye Aganaba, who we just can’t get enough of! We had to bring her back after three years of captivating the Fringe with her soulful and rhythmic sound. She sings the jazz and R&B genres with an authenticity that is seldom found anywhere else in Vancouver, and if you visit the Fringe Bar on Saturday, September 17, you will see why she’s considered “The Queen of the Fringe Bar.”

Make sure to stop by for a drink during the Festival at the Fringe Bar’s new location, Ocean Art Works on Granville Island, and check out the whole lineup while you wait for the Festival to begin!

That Patio Though!: A Dockside Restaurant Shout-out

That patio though!

Dockside Restaurant, a Fringe sponsor for many years will be with us once again to provide their delicious appetizers for the 2016 Vancouver Fringe Festival Opening Night.

One of the most popular aspects of Dockside Restaurant is their patio. The combination of relaxing accommodations, great drinks, and the always beautiful Granville Island scenery has led to the people of Vancouver voting for Dockside for the Best Patio Golden Plate Award five years in a row. Dockside has also won several other Georgia Straight Golden Plate Awards including Best Brewpub and Best Scenery.

In a previous interview, when we asked them what they liked about the Fringe specifically, this was their reply:

We like how unique and out-there some of the shows can be. The Fringe doesn’t try to play to a specific demographic, and certainly doesn’t censor its artists’ material. They look to provide the best shows they can, whether it’s musical, solo performance, more traditional theatre, be it mildly offensive or wildly hilarious. They also go out of their way to provide opportunities for up-and-coming artists to break into a tough industry, which makes for a lot of original shows you won’t see anywhere else.

That’s high praise from a loyal sponsor! We love their praise, we love their patio, and we love their food! Don’t miss out on their hors d’oeuvres during Opening Night on Sept. 6!

Festival Tickets & Programs Available Now!

August 4, 2016

Putting the Rumours to Rest

Yes, Tickets Are On Sale Now!


Looking forward to seeing shows at the Waterfront Theatre during the Festival? You can get your tickets now! Photo by: Brenda Tsang

Looking forward to seeing shows at the Waterfront Theatre during the Festival? You can get your tickets now! Photo by: Brenda Tsang

You might want to take a seat because we’ve got some exciting news that’ll sweep you off your feet! You’ve probably been hearing rumours about how tickets are on sale for the 2016 Vancouver Fringe Festival for only $14. Well guess what? The rumours are true! Festival tickets are now on sale! But don’t feel excluded if you’re a little bit frugal, because we also have tickets for select shows that are available at half-price!

Now, some of you might be thinking “Gee, I do like saving my money… but I also want to see a whole boatload of Fringe shows! What should I do?” Well don’t you worry, because we’ve got just the solution! Get yourself a Frequent Fringer Card! Those sons of guns offer a great value. But Frequent Fringers come in limited quantities, so get your four, 10, or 30 performance pass now!

Don’t forget, everyone needs a Membership to attend shows at the Festival. You can add a Membership to your ticket purchase online or get one at the venue starting 45 minutes before showtime.

Tickets and Frequent Fringer Cards are available for purchase online now.

Don’t hesitate! Get your tickets today!

Program Guides Now Available!

Our Program Guide is out! We would like to thank the wonderful people at St. Bernadine Communications for their part in creating the amazing cover artwork. Specifically, we want to thank Alastair Bird for his photography, Steve Pinter for his retouching, Tara Travis for being our cover model, and thanks to our poster model, Harrison Mooney, who you’ll be seeing round town soon!

We asked Sarah Wells, a writer for St. Bernadine, to comment on what the cover artwork was meant to convey, and this is what she had to say:

“This year’s campaign brings to life the idea that the Fringe Festival, with its diverse lineup, will make audiences “Feel it all.” In this surreal visual, the Fringe is represented by a hand moving marionette strings to illustrate some of the many emotions one might experience as a Festival goer.”

As for inside the Guide, Lead Designer, Vivian Chen has been working hard since May. “The challenge was finding a way to have all the information [in the program guide], within an organized format that’s easy to read,” she noted. This was no easy task as this year’s Fringe will be presenting a record 110 shows.

You’ll be able to find the Guide at select Blenz Coffee locations and other Fringe friendly businesses around town. Check out the map here to find a location you, download the (large) file, or view it online.

We hope you enjoy all the hard work put into this project! Now all that’s left is to do what the program guide says and FEEL IT ALL!

Celebrating the Program Guide with a Launch Party!

Fringe Fans with their freshly printed Guides! Photo by: Bruce McPherson.

If you didn’t make it to the Program Guide Launch Party on July 28, then you definitely missed out! After wrapping up the AGM, people stayed to enjoy a wonderful evening of games, food, and laughter… and that was all before Jimmy made an appearance!

As Big Rock Urban was serving some of their delicious pizza, we kicked things off with a fun game of Fringo, a great interactive game that had participants meeting many new people! Looking for a fellow party goer who, for example, “plays the ukulele” or “has never been to the Fringe” sparked interesting conversation throughout the party. Plus, tickets to the Vancouver Queer Film Festival and Theatre Wire shows were up for grabs! Deborah Loren and Elaine McRichie tied and decided they’d share the winnings!

Then, our MC and Executive Director, David Jordan, officially introduced the Program Guide to the public. David also brought up Debby Reis, our Communications Director, and Vivian Chen, our Lead Designer to speak on the process of creating the Program Guide. A “scavenger hunt” ensued with people scouring their guides to match clues like “Siamese twins” to the correct page number (p. 58). Don Wright found the most, taking home a specially made, embossed Fringe water bottle!

Those who attended (and those who were following the live tweets) know what an awesome time it was! Thank you to everyone who came out!

Report: the 2016 AGM

From left to right: Andrew Westman, Bob Wang, and David Jordan, presiding over the AGM. Photo by: Bruce McPherson.

On July 28, members of the First Vancouver Theatrespace Society met for the Annual General Meeting at Big Rock Urban Brewery.

The Fringe’s Executive Director David Jordan reported on the past year, including the introduction of new year round staff, including Robyn Kurtz, Director of Patron Development, and Cherine Amr, Sponsorship and Development Manager. Robyn and Cherine are filling the rather large shoes left by Gareth Duncan, who after seven years of growing the Fringe’s donor program has moved on to the Lions Gate Hospital Foundation. Gareth will be lauded with a Your Fringe For A Day during the Festival. Shantini Klaassen is now our Managing Director, a new title to reflect her new responsibilities tied to delivering our new and existing programs. David also commended Jess Amy Shead, a “unicorn” of seasonal staff, who returns to the Festival for a third year as Artist Services Coordinator.

Andrew Westman, the Society’s Board Chair, welcomed new board members, Bob Wang (our new Treasurer), Gerry Keane, Leslie Carty, and Claudia Sjoberg. He also bid a fond adieu to outgoing board members Karen LeClair, Jane Westheuser, Lianna Walden, and Beverley Kort. We thank them for all the time they dedicated to the Fringe over the years and we’re certain they’ll continue Fringeing with us long into the future.

Members then reviewed the Financial Statements, which include a planned deficit to cover the cost of implementing the new year round program Theatre Wire, a program that is expected to cover its own costs within a few years.

Finally, board member Nancy More presented the Special Resolution, which included a name change, from the First Vancouver Theatrespace Society to the Vancouver Fringe Theatre Society, as well as amendments to our bylaws and constitution, to ensure that the Society is compliant with the new Society Act. The motion passed!

If you missed out and want to make sure you vote in next year’s AGM, make sure to purchase and activate a Membership for the 2016 Fringe by filling in the form and dropping this off at any venue or the Fringe Box Office during the Festival. We’ll be in touch to let you know when next year’s AGM is.

The Fringe and Blenz: The Perfect Marriage

Yes, that’s right people. The time has once again come to give the biggest of shout outs to Blenz Coffee, who serve as the main distribution point for the 2016 Vancouver Fringe Program Guides. But, what is it exactly that makes the Fringe and Blenz keep coming back to each other year after year? Well, obviously there’s the fact that sipping on a latte at a Blenz Coffee provides the perfect setting for reading through the Guide—but both of us also really, really love people. Anyone who has read either the Blenz or the Fringe‘s “About Us” webpages knows this to be true. Another thing that we appreciate about Blenz Coffee is that they think outside the box! Did you know that Blenz Coffee trademarked the name MatchaLatte and that Blenz was the first coffee shop to introduce matcha lattes to Vancouver? Crazy, right?

We think it’s the perfect marriage, don’t you? Click here to find a Blenz Coffee distribution point near you! In the meantime, test your coffee knowledge with this fun Blenz Coffee quiz!