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The Fringe is ON!

September 6, 2019

Get Ready to Mix and Match at the Fringe!

Get ready to fill up on heaps of Fringe-y goodness for the next 11 days! Photo by Sarah McNeil.

Gotta have your Fringe? Enjoy 11 days of a Theatrically Delicious Festival… which officially opens TODAY! Watch one (or more!) of the 101 shows, dance to amazing live music for free at the Phillips Fringe Bar, learn at the workshops, attend our special events, and get your daily dose of Fringe on and off the Island!

If you’d like to get a sneak peek of the shows, take a look at the Program Guide online, or get it a Blenz Coffee near you and at other Fringe-friendly businesses! If you’re ready to build your Fringe schedule, go to Fringe-O-Matic, a free app that will help you get the most out of the Fringe! And if you’re more about living in the moment, you’re always welcome to Fringe on Granville Island or any of our Off-Island Venues!

Check out the latest updates from the Festival by following the Fringe on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter! And make sure to tag us @VancouverFringe on those platforms and show the world how much fun you’re having at the Festival! Also use the hashtag #VanFringe so we can follow along.

Fringe-For-All Recap

Check out some highlights from last night’s Opening Night featuring The Georgia Straight Fringe-For-All! From left to right: Tymisha Harris (Josephine), Joylyn Secunda (The Moaning Yoni), Janoah Bailin (SpinS), and June Fukumura (My Name is SUMIKO)! Photo by Sarah McNeil.

Thanks to everyone who Fringed their heart out at Opening Night featuring The Georgia Straight Fringe-For-All last night! Held on Wednesday, September 4, Fringers had a taste of everything (well, 40 shows anyway!) and packed Performance Works with laughter and applause. And if you weren’t there, we hope that you got a healthy scoop of Fringe from our live tweets!

Fringers kicked off Opening Night by mixing and mingling each other while nibbling on food from Dockside Restaurant, The Keg, and Habibi’s, and sipping on refreshments by Road 13 Vineyards and Georgian Bay Spirits Co. At 8:00pm, Abdul Aziz (Fake Ghost Tours 2) and Ate Dean Aiden Vanité Ethan Yo-Yo Kaldereta the First (who you may remember from the show Big Queer Filipino Karaoke Night) welcomed everyone to the controlled chaos that is the Fringe-For-All! Thanks to their witticisms, banter, and presence, they made rolling out 40 bite-sized theatre trailers onto the stage feel like a breeze! Some memorable moments include Joylyn Secunda (The Moaning Yoni) pulling out a giant tampon onstage, Janoah Bailin (SpinS) going onstage on a unicycle and juggling, and Monica Ogden‘s memorable pap smear experience, shoving a “vagina jack” into her doctor’s face!

Take a peek at the Fringe Twitter feed and you’ll find snippets from all 40 shows from the Fringe-For-All! And when you see a teaser that tickles your fancy, make sure to buy your tickets to see shows in their full glory.

Making the Fringe Accessible

We want as many people as possible to enjoy the Fringe—after all, our vision is “Theatre for Everyone!” With that, we also strive to make the Festival accessible to patrons with different needs and ensure that everyone feels welcome.

All Fringe Festival venues are wheelchair accessible. Learn more about the venues’ physical accessibility here. Since seating at the Fringe is on a first come, first served basis, we encourage patrons with seating needs to arrive early and let the front of house volunteers know so you can receive priority seating. Learn more about the venues’ physical accessibility here.

The Vancouver Fringe strives to make the Festival accessible for people who are d/Deaf and Hard of Hearing. This year, four shows will be interpreted into ASL: the Tuesday, September 10 performance of Dissection of a … Mixed Heritage Woman; the Friday, September 14 performance of Old-ish; the Saturday, September 14 performance of Borderline A**hole; and the Sunday, September 15 performance of Mx. Additionally, the Sunday, September 15 performance of Monica vs. The Internet: Tales of a Social Justice Warrior will be interpreted. There are also some shows that have been identified as “d/Deaf and Hard of Hearing Friendly,” which is indicated by a symbol that looks like an ear in the Program Guide. This means the sound elements do not affect the meaning and enjoyment of a show. For more information about these shows, click here. For more information on the ASL-interpreted and d/Deaf and Hard of Hearing-friendly shows, check out these vlogs created by Ebony from Artistic Sign Language!

The Fringe is thrilled to be partnering with VocalEye again this year to make the Festival more accessible to patrons with Sight Loss and the Low Vision community! VocalEye will live describe Perv Hunters on Sunday, September 15 at 1:10pm at the Waterfront Theatre and The Robber Bridegroom: A Grimm Fairytale on Saturday, September 14 at 2:30pm at the Waterfront Theatre. You may notice in your Program Guide a symbol that looks like an eye—this indicates shows that are Low Vision Friendly. This means that the show’s meaning and enjoyment does not depend on visual elements. Check out the Low Vision Friendly shows here.

We are also excited to institute the Attendant Ticket Program this year. This provides patrons with accessibility needs a complimentary ticket for their attendant to accompany them to see shows. Tickets are subject to availability. Click here to learn more about this new Program and e-mail us for any questions!

We love kids here at the Fringe! Check out the kid-friendly site-specific show, Legend of the Frozen Trees. The Fringe also has shows that have self-identified as being All Ages, which means that although the content isn’t designed for children, they can still enjoy the show. Have a look at those shows on our website and see which of them would be most appropriate for your kids! And once again, the Fringe is partnering with Kids Up Front to offer opportunities to children affected by poverty, illness, abuse, or disability. Click here to learn more about the program and see which shows are donating tickets to Kids Up Front.

Learn more about the Fringe’s Accessibility Programs on our website or e-mail us if you have more questions!

Feast on Music at the Fringe Bar

Every night of the Fringe is a party! And not just because of all the great theatre. The Phillips Fringe Bar is home to live music, beverages from Phillips Brewing, Wards Cider, Road 13 Vineyards, and Georgian Bay Spirits Company, and your last chance at outdoor music this summer!

Our Partner, BeatRoute Magazine has picked some highlights from this year’s lineup that they think you should check out, starting with Buckman Coe tonight! This is his last show in Vancouver before he heads out on tour in Asia! Without futher ado, here’s more of the Fringe Bar from BeatRoute:

Buckman Coe
Thursday, September 5 at 8:00pm
Vancouver’s Buckman Coe weaves a socially conscious narrative into harmony-fuelled rhythms through a unique blend of soul, world music, and Americana.

Friday, September 6, at 8:00pm
With rich vocals and sweet melodies, the lullaby rock of Seattle-based Ings will send you off into a happy dream state.

Sleepy Gonzales
Saturday, September 6, at 8:00pm
Whether they’re churning out dreamy pop jams, playing with ambient textures, or flirting with punk, this eclectic outfit always has one constant: they’re damn good.

Rae Spoon
Thusday, September 12, at 8:00pm
Touting two Polaris Prize nominations, a Lambda Literary Award, and a Western Canadian Music Award, the creative mind of this talented musician and author is a force to be reckoned with.

DJ Shanique
Sunday, September 16, from 7:00pm to 2:00am
DJ Shanique heads the Vancouver chapter of Intersessions—an organization dedicated to bridging inequality gaps facing female-identifying DJs. Vibrant rap sets and hip-hop nights have made her a local favourite.

To top all that off, we’ve just learned that The Rainbow Concert Band, Canada’s only LGBTQ2S+ concert band, will be playing the Phillips Fringe Bar on Sunday, September 8 from 3:00 to 3:30pm! Be sure to save some space in your calendar to check them out!

Raffling for the Fringe’s 35th Birthday

Beau is ready to sell you some Raffle Tickets! Find him in the Raffle Tent, or any one of the lovely ticket sellers in the Fringe Bar. Photo by Sarah McNeil.

Happy 35th birthday to the Fringe!! For this wonderful occasion, we’re raising $35,000 to keep the Festival going for another 35 years. And while we’re halfway there, we’re working hard to reach our goal by October 1! The money raised from the 35 for 35 campaign will further the Fringe’s support for emerging artists, accessibility at the Festival, and the ongoing equity, diversity, and inclusion work.

Since 100% of the base ticket price goes to the pockets of Fringe Artists, one of the ways the Festival is raising money is through the Fringe Raffle! This is a special fundraising effort—prizes to be won include an Instant Camera Prize Pack courtesy of Quay Pacific Property Management Ltd and a Kick Ass Pass for the 2020 Fringe, a Romantic Vineyard Weekend Getaway for Two in Kelowna thanks to Wards Cider and The View Winery, and a Week-long Cuban Adventure for Two through Finisterra Travel!

To get your Raffle Tickets, visit the Raffle Tent next to the Box Office at 1398 Cartwright Street or from one of our raffle ticket sellers in the evenings at the Phillips Fringe Bar! Tickets are one for $10 or three for $20. We’re holding the Final Raffle Draw on September 15 at 10:00pm on Awards Night at Performance Works at 1218 Cartwright Street. You do not have to be present to win—we will contact you if your ticket is drawn!



Tickets may be only sold and purchased in British Columbia.
Ticket purchasers must be 19 years of age or older. If a winning ticket bears a minor’s name, the prize will be lawfully delivered on behalf of the minor parent, legal guardian, or trustee.
Prizes have no equivalent cash value.

Park and Fringe

If you’re taking your car to the Fringe, make sure to take note of the parking changes in Granville Island! Illustration by Zuzia Juszkiewicz.

Driving down to Granville Island to see some Fringe shows? Then make sure to read on, because parking rules on the Island have changed this year.

Parking is free and without time constraint in most parking spots across the Island after 6:00pm. However, paid parking is in effect from 11:00am to 6:00pm for $3 per hour. Fringers can buy parking time in 15-minute, 30-minute, or one-hour increments through the Honk, EasyPark, or PayByPhone apps, or via credit card at machines on site (note that only some machines accept cash). Want to Fringe all day on Granville Island? You can buy a day pass for $21; and If you purchase parking until 6:00pm, it will be valid until 11:00am the next day.

Do you want to Fringe on the weekends but find these new parking rules to be a barrier to enjoying the Festival and taking transit or another mode of transportation isn’t possible? This year, the Fringe will be running a trial Accessible Parking Program on September 7-8 and September 14-15 so you can see more shows and not worry about the parking costs! There are a limited number of parking subsidies available on those dates and will be distributed on a first come, first served basis. Learn more about the Accessible Parking Program on the Fringe website.

Start Your Fringe Right

September 2, 2019

A Theatre Buffet on Opening Night

Try a little bit of everything at the Fringe with The Georgia Straight Fringe-For-All! In 2018, Ms. Beatrice Haven from Is That How Clowns Have Sex? A One-Woman Queer Clown Sex Ed Show answered the audience’s burning questions about the birds and the bees. Photo by Julie De Sousa.

And now, for some breaking news: tickets for Opening Night featuring The Georgia Straight Fringe-For-All on September 4 are sold out! If you’re lucky enough to have your tickets, then at 7:00pm this Wednesday, get ready to chat with your fellow Fringers while feasting on some hors d’oeuvres and desserts from Dockside Restaurant, The Keg, and hummus from Habibi’s! Create some customized phone wallets with MAKE while sipping the newest drinks from the award-winning Georgian Bay Spirit Company. If you didn’t get to try their Strawberry Smashed Soda, Smashed Tea, and Cranberry Gin Smash at the Program Guide Launch Party, then you’ll definitely want to make merry with these newest drinks at Opening Night!

At 8:00pm sharp, have a taste of Theatrically Delicious shows during the Fringe-For-All hosted by Abdul Aziz and Davey Calderon as Ate Dean Aiden Vanité Ethan Yo-Yo Kaldereta the First! Sit back, enjoy, and take notes as 40 Fringe Artists convince you why you should see their shows—all in two minutes or less!

And if you didn’t get a ticket but still want a sampling, don’t worry—we’ll be live-tweeting so you won’t miss a thing!

Go to Cuba With the Fringe Raffle

Have a chance to enjoy this relaxing sunset in Havana by buying a Fringe Raffle ticket today!

Need to unwind after 11 days of Fringing? How about a week-long adventure to Cuba courtesy of Finisterra? This trip can be yours for only $10 through the Fringe Raffle! You and a friend can enjoy an amazing trip to the captivating city of Havana for four days, where you can take in the city’s rich history, vibrant culture, and unique architecture. Then, you’ll be taken to the beach for a few days, where you can soak up the sun and enjoy a few days frolicking in the water! 

But if you don’t win the Grand Prize in the Raffle, Finisterra can design a custom trip that’s just for you, whatever your travel style is! Want to indulge and learn about local cuisine while you’re on tour? They’ve got a one-of-a-kind culinary experience. Need a trip that would be fun for both the toddlers and teenagers in your family? They’ll make it happen. Not only are they passionate about creating tours that are flavoured to your taste, but they are also conscientious about travelling sustainably and responsibly for the long-term benefit of local people by supporting small, local businesses for your travels.  

To get a chance at this wonderful Cuban trip crafted by Finisterra, stop by the Raffle Tent, the Phillips Fringe Bar, or find one of our wonderful Raffle Ticket Sellers around the Festival! Tickets are $10 each or $20 for three tickets. The Raffle Draw will be held on September 15 at 10:00pm during Awards Night at Performance Works on 1218 Cartwright Street. You don’t have to be present—the Fringe will be in touch if your name is drawn! 

Check out the Fringe Raffle’s rules and regulations here.

The Fringe Box Office Opens Tomorrow!

Get your tickets from the lovely staff at the Fringe Box Office and they’ll give you the latest scoop on the Festival’s hottest shows! Photo by Al Ricard.

If you’ve been waiting to buy tickets from an actual person, then we’ve got great news for you: the Fringe Box Office opens tomorrow, September 3! Whether you want to buy tickets, pick up your Frequent Fringer Cards and Memberships, or just want to get the scoop from Box Office Associates, the Fringe Box Office has got you covered. You can find them at 1398 Cartwright Street aka the “Fish Bowl” from 4-9:00pm on weekdays, and from noon-9:00pm on weekends till the end of the Festival on September 15.

Rushing to a venue and can’t swing by the Fringe Box Office? Don’t worry because you can also buy tickets from our lovely Fringe volunteers, who are now able to accept cash AND credit cards at the venues!

If you’re looking to save some money, make sure to check out half-price performances! These are labelled in the Program Guide with the ½ symbol next to the half-price performance (also have a look at the article on “Updates” below for half-price performances that have been added since the Guide was printed.

Please note that there will be no refunds or exchanges once a ticket has been purchased.

For more information about our tickets or passes, visit the Fringe website!

Show Updates

Attention, Fringers! Make sure to pay attention to these changes happening during the Festival.

One thing that’s been constant throughout the Fringe’s 35 years is its unpredictability. From what shows apply to the lottery, to what shows get drawn, and which shows actually perform in the Festival—Fringers can always expect the unexpected!

Unfortunately, this means that some shows have also had to withdraw from the Festival since the Program Guide was printed: Babel-o-drome, The Present Imperfect, and One Man Avengers.

There are a few other updates to be aware of. There is an additional performance of Try to Remember at PAL Studio Theatre on September 15 at 6:15pm. Select performances for the following shows are also cancelled: The Immaculate Big Bang at False Creek Gym on September 5 at 6:45pm; Dion Arnold: How I Killed My Nan at Dockside Lounge on September 11 at 8:00pm; and The Woman Who Borrowed Memories at PAL Studio Theatre on September 15 at 6:15pm.

Other changes in the Festival you need to know about are that all Advance Theatre shows are Low Vision Friendly. Old-ish‘s ASL-interpreted performance will be on Friday, September 13 at 7:45pm at Havana Theatre, and Monica vs. The Internet: Tales of a Social Justice Warrior will have an ASL-interpreted performance on Sunday, September 15, at 3:15pm. Also, VocalEye’s live described performance of Perv Hunters will be on Sunday, September 15, at 1:10pm at Waterfront Theatre.

And if you’re looking to save some cash, be sure to take note that the following shows now have half-priced performances! LIGHTS! CAMERA! ODD JOBS? on September 5 at 6:15pm and on September 12 at 10:15pm; Thumbtacks on September 5 at 8:00pm; AI Love You at September 6 at 5:00pm; Legend of the Frozen Trees on September 6 at 6:45pm; Pieces of Eight on September 6 at 10:05pm; Conduit on September 7 at 1:10pm; and Lift on September 8 at 2:15pm.

Remember to check out the daily Fresh Sheet on our website and around the Festival for additional updates!

Mentoring Artists at the Fringe

In addition to giving Artists a platform to perform at the Festival every year, the Fringe provides mentorship opportunities so Artists can sharpen their skills. Through Advance Theatre: New Works by Diverse Women and the Dramatic Works Series, Artists can learn by doing—and you can see their great works in action!

Check out Advance Theatre: New Works by Diverse Women at False Creek Gym! This series features dramatic readings of five new plays from female-identifying playwrights from September 9-13.

In partnership with Ruby Slippers Theatre and Playwrights Guild of Canada, Advance Theatre: New Works by Diverse Women features dramatic readings of five new plays by female-identifying playwrights. Presented as 1:30pm matinees from September 9-13 at the False Creek Gym, this year’s plays touch on connections across borders, languages, generations, and death: ūtszan by Yvonne Wallace, which unravels the protagonist’s lifelong path to learn and think in her Ancestral first language, Ucwalmicwts; Sis Ne’ Bi-Yiz: Mother Bear Speaks by Taninli Wright, inspired by the Wet’suwet’en playwright’s true story of finding her own voice as she grapples with racist systems and intergenerational traumas; Occupational Hazards by Roneen Marcoux, where cocktail waitresses at different points in their jobs navigate the drink-pushing business; we the same by Sangeeta Wylie, which is based on a true story about Vietnamese oceanic refugees; and Fling by Melody Anderson, where two sisters, Lynnie and Barb try to get truths from their father, who suffers from dementia. Tickets are pay-what-you-can, with a suggested price of $5 to $10, and are cash only at the door. Check out the full schedule here.

Make sure to grab your tickets to the shows featured in the Dramatic Works Series, which will be playing at the Vancity Culture Lab at The Cultch!

Showing at The Cultch’s Vancity Culture Lab, the Dramatic Works Series seeks to boost dramatic content at the Fringe by staging the works of published playwrights. Generously supported by the Lochmaddy Foundation, the Dramatic Works Series is an opportunity for Fringe Artists to be mentored by an experienced theatre artist. Under the mentorship of Métis theatre artist Raes Calvert (Hardline Productions, Redpatch), this year’s lineup includes six productions that are sure to excite audiences: a stage production of Jacob Richmond’s Legoland, which is about two siblings whose lives change after the hippie colony they were raised in gets busted for being the largest marijuana grow-op in Saskatchewan; the premiere of Two Modern Noh Plays by Yukio Mishima, in which the controversial Japanese playwright challenged traditional Noh Theatre conventions; a unique audience experience in 4.48 Psychosis where playwright Sarah Kane’s poetic account of clinical depression is revealed; a haunting and empowering exploration of perceptions of body image in The Most Massive Woman Wins; a sharply written story of two guards on duty at the Taj Mahal in Guards at the Taj; and creating a definitive work for an extraordinary setting in the Tony Award-winning play, Red. For the full schedule of the Dramatic Works Series, click here.

Rohit Recommends…

Undecided what shows to watch during the Festival? Why not see what Fringe veteran Rohit Chokhani has to recommend?

With 101 shows to choose from, choosing which Fringe shows to watch over 11 days of the Festival can seem like a daunting task. But who can give recommendations better than Rohit Chokhani? This Jessie Award-winning director launched his theatre career at the Fringe, where he continues to experiment with new ideas, concepts, and projects. Bombay Black by Anosh Irani, which he produced and directed as part of the Dramatic Works Series in 2017, will be remounted this fall with an all-new cast and upgraded production design! Presented in partnership with Theatre Wire, make sure to mark your calendars from November 1-3 and come see it at the York Theatre.

As the Festival draws closer, we asked this Fringe veteran to tell us his Top 10 Must-See Shows! After flipping through the Program Guide, he listed shows that stood out for him immediately. Visit Rohit’s website to see his Top 10 Picks for the Fringe!

Meet the TD Fringe Forward Award Contenders!

The Fringe is proud to present the TD Fringe Forward Award in partnership with Neworld Theatre and generously supported by TD Bank Group!

As part of furthering the vision of “Theatre for Everyone” and supporting and making space for more diverse voices in the Festival, the Fringe is very proud to present the TD Fringe Forward Award in partnership with Neworld Theatre! Generously supported by TD Bank Group, this new award honours a production that centres the work of Artists from historically marginalized communities and approaches the work from a place of authenticity. For its first year, 16 shows are vying for the Award, which includes a performance opportunity, rehearsal space, mentorship, and cash for future development.

The contenders include My Name is SUMIKO, June Fukumura’s clown show that blends Japanese stereotypes and serves up a zany, East-meets-West comedy about life, death, and love; Two Modern Noh Plays by Yukio Mishima by Midtwenties Theatre Society, which stages two controversial works from the infamous Japanese playwright; Monica vs. The Internet: Tales of a Social Justice Warrior by Monica Ogden, a solo show that sheds light on activism in the age of the internet, mixed-race identity, white feminism, and other social justice-related issues; and Borderline A**hole by Julie Gieseke, a solo show that navigates mental health labels and their stigma from an LGBTQ+ perspective.

Additionally, there’s R’n’J: The Untold Story of Shakespeare’s Roz and Jules by Stolen Cactus, a tragicomedy adventure that explores an alternate ending for Romeo and Juliet; Josephine by Lil Theatre Company, a one-woman biographical musical about Josephine Baker, the first African-American international superstar; and tadpole: the last episode by THEATRECORPS, which navigates mental illness in the context of realities; and The Moaning Yoni by Joylyn Secunda, a solo show where she takes on 17 characters through songs, dances, and stunts to talk about her asexuality.

There’s also Those Who Can’t by Jill Lockley, a comedy that follows the story of Principal Penny, who’s desperate to find a substitute teacher for a group of sixth-grade students who are determined to hurt every teacher who steps through the door; Mx by Lili Robinson, which cracks open notions of mixed-race, Black, and Queer identity through the lens of a character stuck in-between by incorporating elements of clown, bouffon, and mythology from the African Diaspora; Dissection of a … Mixed Heritage Woman by Nyla Carpentier, where she unravels and weaves together family and personal stories, poetry, dance, and a bit of song to explore where her mixed heritage is pulling her; and Pretty Beast by Kazu Kusano, a solo comedy show that talks about growing up in a dysfunctional family and using humour as a survival tool in a sexist Japanese society.

Rounding out the list of contenders for the TD Fringe Forward Award are Rape is Real & Everywhere by Emma Cooper and Friends, a stand-up comedy show performed by rape survivors; Guards at the Taj by South Asian Canadian Histories Association (SACHA), which is about two Imperial Guards standing on duty at the famed Taj Mahal in 1648; Red Glimmer by Dusty Foot Productions, an absurd sci-fi dramedy about a woman who involuntarily takes an all-inclusive internal trip after a deep depression; and Where the Quiet Queers Are, which uses choral music, a cappella soundscape, and spoken poetry to explore how queer people find family in a transient city.

Get your tickets to these shows today on the Fringe website, and find out who wins the first-ever TD Fringe Forward Award at Awards Night on September 15!