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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.
Don’t hesitate! Get your tickets today!
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.
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!
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.
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?
Attention all binge Fringers… it’s time to buy your Frequent Fringer Cards! Cards are now available for you and a guest to have access to four, 10, or 30 regular Festival performances. Not only will you get to see tons of Fringe shows with a Frequent Fringer Card, but artists will also receive 100% of the proceeds from Frequent Fringer Card purchases. So, unlike Netflix, you get to binge watch without the guilt!
All of this is great, but you’ll have to hurry because there are a limited number of Frequent Fringer Cards available. Again, Cards are limited to regular Festival performances and are not valid at special events. Frequent Fringers are valid for one of two people per performance. Cards are non-transferable and tickets may be booked in advance or at the door. Memberships are required and must be purchased separately (except for the Frequent Fringer 30, which includes one Membership).
The 2016 Vancouver Fringe Festival is just around the corner. We know Fringe fans have a tendency to be rabid, consuming as many Fringe shows as they can during the 11-day span of the Festival—hey, there’s a reason Frequent Fringer Cards always sell out. With Theatre Wire, Fringe fans can nibble on Fringe-y treats all year long! And when you purchase a three or six show subscription package, tickets are just a few bucks more than Festival time shows. But don’t delay—early bird ticket pricing ends August 1!
There are seven shows in the 2016/2017 Theatre Wire season from Fringe alumni… perfect for a 6+ show subscription!
Originally from New Westminster, Baba Brinkman first made a splash at the Vancouver Fringe in 2003 when he performed The Rap Canterbury Tales. He took that show to the Edinburgh Fringe a year later and was soon well known for his Rap Guides to… just about everything. He loves knowledge and has his work peer reviewed by scientists—so you know his facts are legit. Baba brings the Rap Guide to Climate Chaos to Vancouver in October as part of the Theatre Wire season.
Alley Theatre has been a regular part of the Vancouver Fringe for a decade. With a penchant for exploring the dark side of human nature (Little One, Tape) and for site-specific theatre (Tape, Wicked Shorts, Lost in Space) Alley Theatre’s October offering meets both criteria. Set in the dark, Three Stories Up follows a cop trying to solve her husband’s murder in Vancouver’s seedy underbelly. (And it was written by Mack Gordon, another Fringe alum!)
Butt Kapinski wowed Fringe audiences in 2013 with audience participation like we’d never seen before and it won the Cultchivating the Fringe Award and the Volunteer Choice Award that year. We’re excited to have Butt create a special performance for the Fringe’s Opening Night on September 6, and can’t wait for the new show to be part of the Theatre Wire season in November.
Often called Fringe heartthrobs, Peter n’ Chris have joked their way into Fringe fans’ hearts by inviting them to tag along on their adventures to murderous hotels, inside their own bodies, and to the Kinda OK Corral while sharing their friendship along the way. Now the duo takes on Charles Dickens in A Peter n’ Chris-tmas Carol, an exclusive holiday romp this December.
In 2005, Pajama Men made their way to the Vancouver Fringe where they won the Pick of the Fringe. Colin Thomas and Kathleen Oliver, the Georgia Straight’s theatre critics said, “These guys rock. Their previous shows have all been surreal and hilarious. Don’t miss ‘em.” Good advice. Since their success in 2005, the Men have toured internationally, winning awards and earning rave reviews. They’re back with Pterodactyl Nights as part of the Winterruption Festival in February.
Vancouver audiences were introduced to Chase Padgett’s musical range in 2013 when he performed 6 Guitars, which won the Public Market Pick of the Fringe, the BC Touring Council Award, and the Georgia Straight Critic’s Choice Award. In addition to the triumphant 6 Guitars, Chase often performs improv at Portland’s Curious Comedy Theater. He’ll be bringing his improv skills, along with his love of all musical genres, to Theatre Wire in April 2017 with a brand new show, Funny Music Weirdo.
Way back in 2002, Monster Theatre debuted their first ever Vancouver Fringe show, The Canada Show. Since then, Monster has become a staple of the Fringe Circuit, producing hits year after year, with a commitment “to presenting history and myths in an exciting new package for today’s audiences.” Just in time for Canada’s 150th anniversary, The Canada Show is back in Vancouver in May 2017!
To purchase your Fringe themed Theatre Wire subscription, head over to TheatreWire.com and select your shows and preferred dates! Once you choose three or more shows, subscription pricing will automatically come into effect. Click here for more info on how subscriptions work and to see what perks are available to Theatre Wire subscribers.
Are you a playwright who wants to produce a show in the Fringe? Maybe you need a little help crafting your dialogue and storyline? The Fringe New Play Prize just might be for you!
The Fringe works with various organizations that offer mentorship for developing artists. The Fringe New Play Prize is one of these. Playwrights Theatre Centre (PTC) is now accepting submissions and the selected artist will receive eight months of dramaturgy, a spot in PTC’s how-to-produce-theatre seminar series, free creation and rehearsal space, and a free, guaranteed Mainstage spot in the 2017 Vancouver Fringe!
Applications are due October 2, 2016 and must include a script idea, outline, fragment, or draft; the resumes of artists involved in the creation; and a production plan. See PTC’s website for full details.
Previous Fringe New Play Prize winners include Derek Chan whose 2015 Fringe show, Starstuff: Per Aspera Ad Astra followed an astronaut on a perilous expedition; Tara Travis with The Unfortunate Ruth; SNAFU Dance Theatre with Kitt & Jane: An Interactive Survival Guide to the Near-Post-Apocalyptic Future; and Deneh’Cho Thompson, whose show, The Girl Who Was Raised By Wolverine, will be presented at the Fringe this year!
Do you have the beginning of a script for the 2017 Fringe? Apply for the Fringe New Play Prize now!
We are very excited to announce that Big Rock Brewery will once again be sponsoring the Fringe Bar! Drinks will be flowing every night at the Big Rock Brewery Fringe Bar while top-tier local musicians and DJs will grace the stage and add to the positive energy.
In addition to sponsoring the Vancouver Fringe Festival, Big Rock Brewery has a long history of being active participants in the arts. We spoke with Stuart Karol, Big Rock Brewery’s National Social Media Specialist, for more information:
Fringe: Between the festivals and theatrical events that you guys sponsor, and the very creative artwork that goes into your product labels, it’s clear that creativity is a point of focus for you guys. Speak on the reasoning behind this.
Stuart Karol: The inclusion of original artwork on our labels goes back over 30 years. Our founder, Ed McNally, and his wife Linda were big supporters of the arts community. Ed and Linda had a vast collection of their own artwork, and believed Big Rock’s labels were the perfect canvas to share great art with a broader audience. Ed was also pretty passionate about the art of brewing craft beer. We like to consider our Brewmasters artists in their own right. So, bringing the two together just feels right!
Creativity knows no bounds at the Fringe and the Fringe Bar… and you can be a part of it too! Big Rock Brewery and the Fringe are brewing up a contest where the winner will get to create their own beer! Stay tuned! We’ll be announcing the contest and details soon.
The First Vancouver Theatrespace Society (FVTS), producers of the Fringe Festival, will be holding an Annual General Meeting on Thursday, July 28 at 6:00pm at Big Rock Urban Eatery. If you purchased and activated a Membership at the 2015 Fringe Festival, then you are a Member and eligible to attend and vote during the AGM.