February 2020


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  • Ain't True & Uncle False

    Buy tickets Vancouver Fringe and Paul Strickland Presents present:Ain't True & Uncle FalseMarch 26-28, 2020The...
  • Theatre Under the Gun

    Buy tickets Vancouver Fringe and Monster Theatre present:Theatre Under the GunApril 21, 2020Performance Works,...

Operatic Ghosts and Dogs

May 22, 2019

Fringe Season Opens!

A collage of show images for shows that are coming to Vancouver from Orlando. Clockwise, from top left: A blue eye looking straight to the camera; a man in a hat with both arms crossed and raised, one holding a gun; a man in a suit looking up to the right; a man speaking into a mic; a man with his mouth closed, looking to the right, holding a mic; a drawing of a tomato, a man holding on to what looks like an arrow with wings, with the text

Keep an eye out for these shows that will be making their way from Orlando to Vancouver! Clockwise, from top left: Didn’t Hurt; Crazy for Dick Tricks: A Dirk Darrow Investigation; You Belong Here; Operatic Panic Attack; The Immaculate Big Bang; and Tomatoes Tried to Kill Me But Banjos Saved My Life.

‘Tis the season to start Fringing! Although the Vancouver Fringe is still a few months away, Orlando Fringe’s launch on May 14 officially marked the beginning of Fringe season. Vancouver, Orlando, and about 30 other Festivals are part of the Canadian Association of Fringe Festivals, which means that there are a lot more Fringe Festivals happening over the summer before we kick things off September 5!

This also means that many Fringe Artists will start touring the circuit, taking their shows from city to city in the US and Canada. From Orlando, six shows will be staged in different Festivals before arriving in Vancouver: Tomatoes Tried to Kill Me but Banjos Saved My Life (which was here last year!), Operatic Panic Attack, Crazy for Dick Tricks: A Dirk Darrow Investigation, You Belong Here, Didn’t Hurt, and The Immaculate Big Bang. And did you know that Fringe Artists don’t have to perform the same show on their Fringe circuit tour? This is the case for Squirrel Suit Productions, DK Reinemer, bike circus, and Chicken for Supper Productions.

With months of Festivals ahead of us, you’re probably bound to stumble upon a Fringe during your summer travels! And while we wait for September, let’s have some fun with CAFF’s #RandomFringeTitle generator. Check out our Twitter feed and Facebook page to see what Fringe staff and fans have been sharing! Also check out the full list of CAFF Member Festivals here, and make sure to follow us on Twitter, where we’ll be sharing reviews of shows that will be making their way to Vancouver in September!

The image has a yellow background. At the top left, it says

Celebrate the opening of Fringe season with us by playing the #RandomFringeTitleGenerator, and don’t forget to share your results with us!

35K for 35 Years

A collage of photos throughout the Fringe's history. Top left photo: a man stands between two drag queens, holding a mic and a piece of paper. Top right: A person painted in silver paint blowing bubbles. Middle: a group of people walking, some of them with woodwind instruments and drums. Bottom left: two people look at the camera deviously. One of them looks to have little devil horns coming out of their head, and the other one with a single blue horn. They both look painted to be like clowns. Bottom right: Eight people look to the left, their faces well-lit. Their faces are painted to recall traditional Japanese theatre. Caption: Make this the best Fringe birthday ever by donating to the 35 for 35 campaign!

Make this the best Fringe birthday ever by donating to the 35 for 35 campaign!

The Vancouver Fringe is turning 35 this year. That’s three and a half decades of Fringey theatre in Vancouver! It seems like just yesterday when the first Fringe Festival opened in the parking lot of an IGA in Mount Pleasant. While some things have changed and some have stayed the same, one thing’s for sure: the Fringe has grown since 1985!

Celebrate this milestone by raising $35,000 during the 35 for 35 campaign. You can help the Fringe reach the goal by donating on the website. Your donation will support emerging artists, make the Fringe accessible, and amplify our equity, diversity, and inclusion work, among other things. A $500 donation has kicked off the campaign, and now it’s up to Fringers like you to raise $34,500 more! As a token of our gratitude, we will feature your name at the Donor Booth during the 2019 Fringe, and you’ll be invited to a donor-exclusive event where you’ll meet fellow Fringe donors and be treated to a private performance by a Fringe Artist!

For more information on our 35 for 35 campaign, contact Chelsey Stuyt, Director of Sponsorship and Development. Donate now and help make this the best Fringe birthday ever!


Get Spooked With Fake Ghost Tours

Two men weaing caps and jackets are framed by two audience members. They are wearing mics as well. Shawn, the one on the left, has one hand on his chest, and the other hand on Abdul's shoulder. Caption: Go on a real walking tour with "real" ghost stories with ghost hunters and "identical" twin brothers, Shawn O'Hara and Abdul Aziz! Photo by Nandia Syabrina.

Go on a real walking tour with “real” ghost stories with ghost hunters and “identical” twin brothers, Shawn O’Hara and Abdul Aziz! Photo by Nandia Syabrina.

Get to know the ghosts of East Vancouver in an all-new edition of Fake Ghost Tours at this year’s rEvolver Festival! From May 30 until June 2, join “identical” twin brothers and ghost hunters Abdul Aziz and Shawn O’Hara as they take audiences on a real walking tour with “real” ghost stories.

Lauded by Vancouver Presents as a “fresh and welcome respite,” Fake Ghost Tours came about as a result of two friends trying to make each other laugh.

“[W]e were walking around Victoria one afternoon and joking around about how, if ghosts were real, most of the ghosts that exist were probably just regular boring people,” Abdul recalls. Their roving show has since been staged at the Vancouver and Victoria Fringes.

For Abdul, the best part of every show are the unscripted parts where they field questions and interact with passers-by, creating a unique experience for every audience. One memorable instance during their run in Victoria was when a Chinatown resident dressed up in a Halloween costume and jumped out at the tour group during the show.

“We incorporated it into the tour and had a fun time over the rest of the show making call-backs and jokes about the overzealous and attention-seeking demon who haunted Chinatown,” he says.

Audiences can expect the same irreverence, interactive sense of fun and playfulness that drew audiences to their hit Fringe show. And perhaps a potential cameo from one of the ghosts that haunt The Cultch.

“We don’t just try and make people laugh, but we also try to cultivate that feeling of irreverent fun that we all share with our friends in those rare moments late at night when someone says something so wild and hilarious that 15 minutes of uncontrollable giggling ensues,” Abdul says.

Get your tickets for Fake Ghost Tours here, enjoy the tour, and cross your fingers that the ghosts at The Cultch don’t haunt your dreams!

Welcome New Fringe Staffers!

Three people stand with Jimmy, the Fringe's mascot. Megan has her arms behind her back, Hillary has one arm on her hip, the other one raising Jimmy's, while Siobhan holds his other arm. Below them is Angie, who is holding Neelix the Dog. They are all smiling. It's sure to be a great Fringe thanks to our new staff members! You may even recognize some of them! Clockwise from left to right: Megan, Hillary, Jimmy, Siobhan, Neelix, and his mom Angie! Photo by Debby Reis.

It’s sure to be a great Fringe thanks to our new staff members! You may even recognize some of them! Clockwise from left to right: Megan, Hillary, Jimmy, Siobhan, Neelix, and his mom Angie! Photo by Debby Reis.

The Fringe office is bustling with new people! We’re very excited to have on board new and familiar faces: Siobhan Barker, Megan Lai, and Hillary Kaplan. And we’re still looking for more people to join our team!

If you love designing and marketing, you can apply now to be our Junior Designer! This volunteer is responsible for designing and producing marketing collateral, editing photos, and helping with marketing initiatives, including social media. To apply, e-mail your resume and cover letter by Sunday, June 2.

Siobhan Barker is one of the latest additions to our Fringe family as the new Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Director. She has been previously involved in the Fringe as a performer for a few shows and as a volunteer! Outside the office, Siobhan runs nutrition and wellness programs, facilitates professional development for organizations, and is also a writer and singer. She’s looking forward to seeing as many shows as she can in this year’s Festival!

Megan Lai joins us this year as the Artist Services Coordinator. When she’s not in the office, you can find her a stone’s throw away at the Vancouver TheatreSports, where she works as the Sound and Lighting Improviser and Stage Manager, and where she performs in improv shows regularly! She’s excited to be involved in the Fringe from the Festival side of things and see how everything comes together!

You may recognize Hillary Kaplan, who was involved in the Fringe last year as our Volunteer Supervisor and is coming back as Assistant Volunteer Coordinator! Also a producer for Burn in the Forest, she’s looks forward to getting to know all the Fringe volunteers, saying “I love being around all the volunteers talking about all the shows they’ve seen, what they’re going to see, how everyone just lives and breathe Fringe for 11 days. When it was over, it felt like I had just come back from summer camp and had to readjust to The Real World.”

Lastly, we’d like to welcome Neelix, the Fringe’s official Morale Officer! He’s a year and a half old shepherd mix who comes to us all the way from Texas. This cuddly dog loves carrots, apples, cheese, and pepperoni sticks, going out for walks and playing with his canine friends at the dog park. He’s excited to steal the heart of every human who walks through our office doors!

The Theatre Scene

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

rEvolver Festival
May 22-June 2
The Cultch
rEvolver Festival is back for another year! Upintheair Theatre’s annual theatre festival features adventurous, high energy, and sophisticated new work by emerging companies and artists. If you want to see familiar Fringey faces, catch Kanon Hewitt (Fireflies), June Fukumura (Perfect Strangers), Tai Amy Grauman (You Used to Call Me Marie), After Party Theatre (Lady Parts), and Davey Calderon (Brave Space) in their newest shows! And if you missed Awkward Hug, Fake Ghost Tours (which the Fringe is presenting!), and Surveil at the 2018 Festival, now’s your chance to see them. Check out the whole lineup here.

Five people are gathered around a table. A woman wearing a furry yellow sweater on the left leans on the table, her right hand dangling raw chicken. Next to her is a man in a toque looking at her, his right hand on the man next to him's shoulder. In the middle is a man in a white shirt wearing an apron. He has a cutting board in front of him, and he is about to cut a raw chicken. Behind him is a woman wearing a floral shirt and holding sunglasses. Next to her is a woman wearing a toque with cat ears, half her body on the table, her head resting on her hands. Caption: Three magical worlds collide as we contemplate the ideas of home, cultural identity, and point of our existence in Chicken Girl. Starring (from left to right): Amanda Sum as Chicken Girl, Pedro Chamale as Submariner, BC Lee as Uncle Chan, Marguerite Hanna as Supersuperstar, and Maki Yi as Cat. Photo by Emily Cooper.

Three magical worlds collide as we contemplate the ideas of home, cultural identity, and point of our existence in Chicken Girl. Starring (from left to right): Amanda Sum as Chicken Girl, Pedro Chamale as Submariner, BC Lee as Uncle Chan, Marguerite Hanna as Supersuperstar, and Maki Yi as Cat. Photo by Emily Cooper.

Chicken Girl
May 24-June 7
rice & beans theatre’s latest show, Chicken Girl, might just have the answer to the perpetual question, “why did the chicken cross the road?” Follow the eponymous protagonist as she goes on a surreal adventure to uncover her Uncle Chan’s mysterious disappearance, a homesick intergalactic rock star struggling to reconcile with estranged family, and an anxiety-ridden submariner as they recruit an anthropomorphic cat to settle and old score.

Vancouver International Children’s Festival
May 27-June 2
Various Venues on Granville Island
Get the kids in your life hooked on theatre by attending the Vancouver International Children’s Festival! Make sure to check out Iron Peggy, a multimedia feast that uses live performance, animation, video, and shadows to tell the story of a young girl’s personal victory and First Nations participation during World War I. Buy tickets here and take a look at all the shows that are part of the Festival here.

The Fringe Turns 35!

April 12, 2019

Help Us Celebrate with 35 for 35!

Image description: A collage of six images from the Fringe over the years. Top left: a naked woman holds two signs--

Not bad for 35, right? Help us celebrate our anniversary by donating to our 35 for 35 campaign!

Did you know the Vancouver Fringe is turning 35 this year? Time sure flies by fast—that means thousands of volunteers, hundreds of shows, scores of staff—all amounting to countless hours of showcasing Theatre for Everyone! 

We’re going to be celebrating our 35th anniversary by raising $35,000. Help us achieve this goal by donating through our website! As a thank you, we will give you a special shout-out on social media, and your name will be added to the list of 35 for 35 supporters, which we’ll feature at the donor booth during the 2019 Festival! You will also be invited to a special, exclusive 35 for 35 event during the 2019 Festival, which includes a private performance by a Fringe Artist and features food, drinks, and a chance to meet your fellow Fringe donors! 

Interested? Donate now, or e-mail our Director of Sponsorship and Development, Chelsey Stuyt, for more information! 

We <3 Our Volunteers!

Image description: a collage of four photos featuring Vancouver Fringe volunteers. Top left: Two older women wearing Fringe shirts under their jackets are sitting on a bench, looking at each other. Top right: four volunteers wearing their Fringe shirts, with the Raffle Coordinator wearing a "Raffle" apron on top of his Fringe shirt. He stands next to the two volunteers, while two are sitting down. They look at the camera, smiling. Bottom left: four volunteers stand next to the Bar Entrance sign, holding the Program Guide on each side. Bottom right: three volunteers hold up their Volunteer Passes to the camera, smiling. Caption: We're extremely grateful to all our volunteers! Photos by: Nandia Syabrina (top left and bottom right), Al Ricard (top right), and Cody Leung (bottom left).

We’re extremely grateful to all our volunteers! Photos by: Nandia Syabrina (top left and bottom right), Al Ricard (top right), and Cody Leung (bottom left).

This National Volunteer Appreciation Week, we want to thank and celebrate our more than 500 volunteers who have donated thousands upon thousands of hours of their time to the Fringe! With 11 days and 97 shows in the 2018 Festival, we can confidently say that the Festival would not have been possible without all the work volunteers do—from selling tickets, bartending, and to helping out with production, among other tasks. We also want to give a shout out to our Theatre Wire volunteers, who help operate our front of house smoothly. We seriously can’t do this work without you!  

One of our volunteers shared:

“Volunteering with the Fringe Festival was an amazing experience. I got to live a roller coaster of emotions in a very short period of time: from being mesmerized by all the shows that I got to attend for free, to the beautiful sense of community and belonging that I got to feel with the Fringe Family, whether it’s with other volunteers, staff, artists, or even patrons. I got to explore new venues around Vancouver, and memorize Granville Island like the back of my hand! The Fringe Festival gave me a beautiful sense of belonging, and I will definitely volunteer again next year.” 

We certainly look forward to having our returning volunteers back at the Festival, and welcome new ones to join our ever-growing family! Keep your eyes open for when we start recruiting volunteers for the 2019 Festival in June!  

Special thanks to Shear Comfort for generously supporting our volunteer program! And thanks to all the other sponsors who contributed to the program: Phillips Brewing and Malting Co., Wards Cider, Foodora, Road 13 VineyardsThe Keg, Mobi, Hardbite, Boston Pizza, Habibi’s Mediterranean Foods, Clif Bars, Georgian Bay Spirit Co., and Rush Order Tees!

Once again, from all of us at the Fringe, thank you to all of our past and present volunteers, and we hope to see you at this year’s Festival! 

The Theatre Scene

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

Never the Last
Now – April 20
Catch the world premiere of Delinquent Theatre’s Never the Last, which follows the passionate relationship of Sophie Carmen Eckhardt-Gramatté, one of the most innovative composers of early 20th century Europe, and expressionist painter Walter Gramatté. She is passionate, rude, and gifted; he is witty, emotional, and compassionate. Their love affair spans 10 years, four cities, artistic successes and failures, and tragedy.

Image description: A black and white photo of a sign on the road that says "Open: Dead People's Things For Sale". Caption: Zee Zee Theatre's Dead People's Things opens next week!

Zee Zee Theatre’s Dead People’s Things opens next week!

Dead People’s Things
April 17 – May 5
Studio 16
Dead People’s Things by Zee Zee Theatre explores the story of Phyllis, a Millennial, who inherits a house and all of its contents after her estranged hoarder aunt commits suicide. She then must work with neighbour Beatrice, a Baby Boomer who has been named executrix, to try and make some sense of the life and death of a woman she barely knew, through the things she left behind.

April 30 – May 4
Progress Lab 1422
Get ready for a reversal of the typical theatre experience with BLANK, presented by Rumble Theatre, in association with Aurora Nova! This Canadian premiere production of Iranian playwright Nassim Soleimanpour’s work is an interactive experience where audience and performer collide and collaborate to spark a new, moving life story each night.

Porn & Pinochet
May 1
The Backroom Theatre in The Heritage Grill
Fringe alumnus Andy Cañete is coming back with his show Porn & Pinochet…this time, as part of Way Off-Broadway Wednesdays! Andy Cañete grew up as a Chilean in Canada until age 13, when his family returned to Pinochet’s Chile, and he became a Canadian in Chile. While traversing the peccadilloes of a difficult family life and being an outsider, Porn & Pinochet touches on both risky and risqué themes.