Carlyn Rhamey reprises her piece, The ADHD Project to town for this year’s Fringe Festival. The production was a hit at the 2017 Hamilton Fringe Festival. Photo contributed

Carlyn Rhamey reprises her piece, The ADHD Project to town for this year’s Fringe Festival. The production was a hit at the 2017 Hamilton Fringe Festival. Photo contributed

BINGE THE FRINGE: Victoria Fringe Fest always brings something new

Annual theatre event sure to keep audiences on their toes; preview night Aug. 22

By Kyle Wells

Monday Magazine contributor

It’s often weird, frequently wonderful and never dull; the Victoria Fringe is back and with it comes a new slate of performances sure to challenge, delight and inspire.

Everything from dramas to dance, stand-up to spoken word and musicals to magic will be on display when the second oldest fringe theatre festival returns to Victoria. Annually, the festival draws around 20,000 people, making it the largest theatre festival on Vancouver Island.

This year, 47 shows have been picked by lottery from submissions that came in from around the globe. There are some guidelines, but the performances themselves are uncensored, providing for a free and open artistic atmosphere.

There are audience advisories for shows, to make sure people know what they’re getting into, but in terms of topics and content, anything is on the table.

“Fringe lives on the edge of boundaries,” says Heather Lindsay, executive director of Intrepid Theatre and Victoria Fringe. “It’s an uninhibited space for anything to happen … It might be riskier, but it brings people together, to take risks together…that’s part of the excitement.”

Fringe kicks off with a free public preview event in Cenntennial Square on Wednesday, Aug. 22. There, in a carnival-like celebration, each performer from the festival will perform a two minute piece from their show, to give a taste of what the full performance will be like. Fringe Fest devotees use this, along with the guide, to help determine which performances they will see over the course of the festival.

The other primary guide people use is word of mouth. Standing in line for a show you’ll hear numerous conversations around what people enjoyed and what they didn’t, everyone in queue doing their amateur sleuthing to figure out where best to spend their time.

Following this path will lead you into new, rewarding places, Lindsay says.

“Take a risk. Experience an artist from out of the country. Support someone locally. See a drama if you always see comedies. There is so much to see and you can’t go wrong.”

Victoria Fringe runs from Aug. 22 to Sept. 3. For more information and tickets visit intrepidtheatre.com.

Live theatreVictoria Fringe Festival

 

Ride the Cyclone original cast member Carey Wass stars in Carey, OK! Volume 1: Timeless Timely Tunes, at the 2018 Victoria Fringe Theatre Festival. Photo contibuted

Ride the Cyclone original cast member Carey Wass stars in Carey, OK! Volume 1: Timeless Timely Tunes, at the 2018 Victoria Fringe Theatre Festival. Photo contibuted

Just Posted

Diana Durrand and Arlene Nesbitt celebrate the new artist space in 2014. Gage Gallery moves this summer from Oak Bay to Bastion Square in Victoria. (Black Press Media file photo)
Gage Gallery moving to Bastion Square

Vivid Connections, a showcase by Laura Feeleus and Elizabeth Carefoot, opens new venue June 29

The City of Victoria is hoping to ring in the summer by celebrating local art and offering some distanced, live music to surprise people in parks, plazas and other public spaces. (Photo courtesy of the City of Victoria)
Live, pop-up concerts and local art being showcased in Victoria this summer

People will see surprise serenades at 16 locations throughout the summer

Gabriola Island artist Sheila Norgate is promoting the Digital Innovation Group’s art impact survey. (File photo)
Vancouver Island artists get behind regional arts impact study

Artists urged to use their stature to help put arts and culture super-region on the map

Most Read