About Minnesota Fringe

There is one big thing that makes Fringe different from any other event in town: All the shows you'll see at Fringe were selected randomly by lottery.

Yep. That's right. Each year the lineup is crafted by placing numbered ping-pong balls into a bingo cage and drawing them out, one by one. From stage veterans to people who are brand new to theater, Minnesota Fringe is a forum for anyone with a story to tell. We also provide the necessary support to make producing a show as easy as possible, regardless of where you land on the artistic spectrum.

Anyone (yes, anyone) can apply to have a show in the festival. If you'd like to have a show in our next festival, applications will go live in November here on our website. Sign up for our newsletter to receive a reminder as well as information about other theater events happening around town.

The mission of the Minnesota Fringe is to promote creative freedom and diversity of artistic expression by linking adventurous artists with adventurous audiences. Thank you for joining in this adventure!

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Shows start and end on time at Fringe. With hundreds of performances and dozens of shows in just 11 days, we have to run a tight schedule to avoid descending into chaos. Performances are no more than 60 minutes long with a half hour between each show.

On weekdays shows begin at 5:30pm, 7pm, 8:30pm and 10pm. On weekends there are additional shows at 1pm, 2:30pm and 4pm.

Late seating: There is NO LATE SEATING at Minnesota Fringe. In addition to keeping our schedule, late seating is a safety issue for artists and audiences.

Safety for artists: Some of our theaters require that patrons walk across parts of the stage to reach the seating area, and many of our production companies’ stage work encompasses entrances and exits from the house.

Safety for audiences: Entering a darkened theater, possibly for the first time, and trying to find open seats puts patrons and volunteers at unnecessary risk.

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Fringe Central

Fringe Central, sponsored by Surly Brewing and hosted by a local establishment, serves as the late-night watering hole for artists, staff, volunteers and audience members alike. Come in after a day full of shows to grab a beer and some bar food. Talk about what you loved and what you didn’t. Meet the artists behind the scenes and actors on the stage. Find out what you should see tomorrow or dream up your own idea for next year. You never know what will happen during Fringe, but dropping by Fringe Central gives you a serious head start.

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What to Wear

Shorts and a t-shirt. Seriously. Also, a pair of comfy shoes will serve you well in case you have to wait in line. Most Fringe shows take place indoors in air-conditioned venues, so having a layer to throw on in case you get chilly is also advisable.

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Choosing a Show

With hundreds of performances and dozens of shows, it's scandalous to see just one. But how to choose the perfect lineup?

Search by genre: You can filter for genres when trying to decide what to see.

Talk to people: It only sounds scary. Just look for the folks in lanyards. Lanyards are worn by Fringe artists and there are at least a thousand of them dying to tell you about their show.

Read and write reviews: See what audiences are raving about on our audience review page, then return the favor and let others know what you thought.

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Get Involved

Fringe isn't just a festival - it's a community, and it couldn't exist without people like you.

Create: Applications for the 2018 festival will are live on this website. Fringe is open to everyone, shows are selected by lottery, and you don't even need to have a show ready when you apply.

Volunteer: Our volunteers are near and dear to our hearts and make our festival go, so we shower them with lots of love and complimentary seats! Sign up for a shift now!

Socialize: Join us any night of the festival at our official hangout, Fringe Central sponsored by Surly Brewing and hosted by a local establishment, for a beer, a burger and maybe even some late-night shenanigans.

Support: Help us create Minnesota's Summer Theater Crawl by donating to or sponsoring our annual festival. Gifts of any size make a large contribution to our ability to meet our mission.

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Box Office Info

Pass, Reservations, and Tickets, Oh My!

In 2018, Fringe will still offer passes but is also re-introducing single tickets options to see shows. We are re-tooling our Box Office policies to reflect our changes. Please check back for more information in the spring.

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Crash and Burn: An American success story

By Middle Name Productions
Created by Eric Marinus and the ensemble

Playing at Jungle Theater


Physical theater/Clowning, First-time Minnesota Fringe Festival producer, First-time producer

A teenage girl with big dreams, a single mom trying to hold it all together, and a folk hero who may or may not be all he's cracked up to be. Inspired by Greek myth and stories about Evel Knievel.

The creators say this show is appropriate for ages 16+


Thu, 8/3 @ 10:00pm


Sat, 8/5 @ 2:30pm


Thu, 8/10 @ 8:30pm


Sat, 8/12 @ 4:00pm

* Reservations not required, but a Day Pass is. Find out more below.

Ticket Options

Day Passes are $16 on weekdays; $22 on weekends. Day Passes serve as entry to any show in the festival on a given day. Optional reservations to guarantee a seat for a particular performance are available by clicking the "reserve" button above. Day Passes can be purchased in advance with a reservation or at any venue box office during the festival.

Weekdays 1pm-3pm and Weekends 11am-1pm we'll also open an Alternative Box Office at Fringe Central so you can grab a Day Pass and skip the lines at the venue before the show.

Day Passes for kids 12 and under are available at any box office during the festival just $5 every day.

A 2017 Fringe button isn't required for entry, but it does get you access! Wearing it not only identifies you as a part of a fabulous Fringe community, it also entitles you to special deals at local bars and restaurants and access to reduced ticket prices at various theaters throughout the year. Get your 2017 Fringe button for only $4 at any Fringe preview event or Fringe venue during the festival.

Read the reviews

Crash & Burn

by Mary Jean Korsmo on August 21, 2017
This user has reviewed 1 show

Enjoyed the play and the subject matter. I hope Mr. Nelson continues with writing and directing. Staging was interesting in its minimal-ness, and I liked the way they used lighting effects and music to spur my imagination to flesh out the settings. Good story--Evel Knieval on the loser side of things. How bad judgement can be contagious. I'd recommend it.

Small town heroes

by Robert Bunker on August 13, 2017
This user has reviewed 4 shows

I'm surprised more reviewers have only felt so-so about this show. I thought the script was clever, and enjoyed the way they showed how heroes in small towns are often not the type of people you might expect. The live music was top notch, and actors all did a great job. Also I have never been to the Jungle Theatre. What a venue!

Tragedy indeed

by Cate Jackson on August 10, 2017
This user has reviewed 12 shows

Great story telling, well acted. Script could have been a bit stronger, but it didn't detract from the overall effect. Classic tale of teen possibly throwing it all away for something stupid.

Solid story

by Eric Cohen on August 10, 2017
This user has reviewed 19 shows

Classic story of excitement vs safety. No real surprises, but well acted and well told with fun musical transitions.

Crash and Die...

by Douglas Stewart on August 9, 2017
This user has reviewed 4 shows

This collaborative effort largely succeeds with crisp scenes, effective use of mime, and nicely performed and well-defined multiple roles by the cast. The live music by The Bard was a bonus for the various transitions from scene to scene. Although the play had a predictable ending, I enjoyed watching the impending disaster play out anyway. If you play the dangerous game of "crash and burn", you eventually "crash and die".

Worth a visit

by Nat Case on August 9, 2017
This user has reviewed 3 shows

It's not a finished, perfect piece, but it has such a rich mine to dig from, it's full of wonderful bits. The mythic nature of the piece is a bit masked by the plain-American realism of the acting—I missed the Icarus piece until I read the description above. Simple staging, lovely live music accompanying, and quietly invested acting... This is an impressive piece as a company-developed script.

A collaborative sucess

by Robbye Lewis on August 9, 2017
This user has reviewed 3 shows

Being fortunate in talking to the director/creator prior to the show, we knew that this beautifully constructed drama was the result of a collaboration between the creator and the actors. They improvised, transcribed and revised the script based on the creators vision. The result is impressive real characters and a compelling story. The actors were a part of the creative process from the beginning and it shows in their convincing performances. This is a drama but is also imbued with humor of the best kind, arising from the characters and their situations. Do yourself a favor and see this one.


by Janis Emily Peabody on August 7, 2017
This user has reviewed 48 shows

Great musical background. Excellent acting. I enjoyed the performance with Heather understudying, and she was phenomenal. The plot line was not all that inventive, but the acting and special effects made this a production to recommend.

Like Going Home

by Edana Hough on August 6, 2017
This user has reviewed 1 show

This re-telling of a myth landed squarely in small town America. The writer developed the characters on point and the actors drew you into the realities of the persona seamlessly. After it was over, I could assign a name to each character from those I knew in my hometown. The true test for me of quality work is if I find myself still drawn into the story hours and days later and I most certainly did with Crash and Burn. Bravo to the director and cast -- well done to all.

Crash & Burn

by Lydia McAnerney on August 6, 2017
This user has reviewed 5 shows

Excellent. Kept me engaged the whole time. Although I expected the ending, I was not ready for it when it came. Dialog was engaging and direction obviously excellent as the flow on stage was wonderful. Thanks for another wonderful offering, Eric! One not to miss.

Worth the effort

by Steve Nelson on August 6, 2017
This user has reviewed 1 show

Tightly written and directed but allowed the cast to display their talents. Predictable climax but also true with most myths, including the one on which this play was based
(Google "sun chariot"). A good first play by the writer/director.

A Kitchen Sink Drama

by Hannah Coleman on August 6, 2017
This user has reviewed 5 shows

An okay piece, mostly filled with small intimate family fights and feuds. It was very predictable and the acting was very calm and low energy. Nothing to rag on, but also nothing to write home about. The one-night stand in for the August 5th performance did a phenomenal job, great comedic timing. A shame she is not a member of the regular cast, her comedy parts were the highlight of the show.

1 person found this review helpful


by Phillip Schramm on August 5, 2017
This user has reviewed 6 shows

This isn't one of those shows that is reinventing the genre, but that's okay. While the story may be predicable, it is beautifully told. All the actors are fantastic, and the show is worth it just to see them play these genuine authentic three-dimensional characters. The live music adds so much to the setting and context, that you forget you are even in the Midwest for the hour. Make some time to see this show.

Beautiful work by a talented cast.

by Scott Gilbert on August 5, 2017
This user has reviewed 5 shows

I loved the performances and the sound. I figured out the story within the first 5 minutes so I was just along on the journey for the rest of the show. That said - the simplicity of it all worked and the 3 actors and 1 musician created some beautiful moments.

Crash and burn

by Lovea Story on August 4, 2017
This user has reviewed 3 shows

While watching this play I forgot I was in the theater and I was drawn into this play immediately by the great acting. The show was moved along by the great live music. The staging and directing were awesome, pulling me right in to the scenes. A must see.

Simple yet full of truth!

by Joe McGowan on August 4, 2017
This user has reviewed 2 shows

With a small cast the acting had to be on point and that it was! The writing was not cumbersome. It allowed me to forget I was at a theater on occasion. The actors had an ability to have my eyes truly see a trailer park rust and all. I enjoyed the use of the stage changing focus allowing the speed of the piece to flow. The use of a live narrator/musician gave the performance a layer of charm. I would recommend this show. Please make it a stop when you are in the Uptown area.

3 people found this review helpful

Great Show!

by Jamie Jachimiec on August 4, 2017
This user has reviewed 2 shows

Crash & Burn is excellently acted, engaging, entertaining, hilarious, and sincere. The director and cast did a "stellar" job bringing an archetypal story to common life. Bravo!

2 people found this review helpful

Bravo to the cast!

by Danielle S on August 4, 2017
This user has reviewed 14 shows

This type of story has definitely been told before, but I think this is a good version. The cast played their characters very well - I didn't think for a second that they were acting. Good use of props and sounds, too!

4 people found this review helpful

A Fringe Success Story!

by Lanny Langston on August 3, 2017
This user has reviewed 6 shows

This play was lovely. This cast and crew nailed it on every level: excellent acting, wonderful atmospheric live music, a thoughtful, funny and poignant script, and nice stage direction. The title made me think it would be just a bit of silly fun, but I came out genuinely moved. This play could easily just be a parody of trailer park trash, but instead is a genuine insight into the lives of people who dare to dream big. Bravo to this cast and crew on an excellent performance, and I hope you go see this play.

4 people found this review helpful

Cast and crew

Megan Rene Guidry


Megan enjoys balancing both being a person and an actor. In her free time, she enjoys standing outside staring into the sun. She's also a serious person when quiet, which is almost never. For this show, Megan is excited for audiences to dive into the challenges of telling truth from fantasy and how it can affect some of our most intimate relationships.

Lauren Diesch


Lauren Diesch is an actor, director, teaching artist, administrator, and all around Jack-of-all-trades. She is a company member of Theatre Coup d'Etat and the Director of Education at CLIMB Theatre. This is Lauren's third appearance at Fringe. She was last seen as part of the ensemble in Now I See and as the Professor in Theatre 101. Oh! And she once rode a motorcycle in a red leather mini-dress.

Heather Bunch

Ruth/Dwayne (Aug 5 performance)

Heather Bunch is an actor, writer, and collaborator based in the Twin Cities. After graduating from the London International School of Performing Arts, Heather became an ensemble member of Transatlantic Love Affair. Other theatre credits include Red Eye, Frank Theatre, Dreamland Arts, Playwright's Center, Sandbox Theatre, and Off-Leash Area. Heather is psyched to be able to perform in this piece, even if it is for just one show!

Trevor Keeth

Johnny Meteor/Tattoo Tony

Quite possibly the former king of a small, imaginary island off the coast of Nowhere, Trevor Keeth self-identifies as an energy wave, propagating itself through four dimensions via theater, film, music, prose, and laughter. This is his first theatrical production since washing up on the shores of the Twin Cities only a few months ago.

Tiny Gene Poole

The Bard

Tiny Gene Poole performs with the Hula Peppers locally along with Papa John Kolstad on occasion. The instrument of choice is the National Tricone resonator guitar.

Eric Marinus Nelson


"Crash and Burn" is Eric's fourth time in the Fringe and first time directing. Other Fringe shows have included Transatlantic Love Affair's "Ash Land," "These Old Shoes," and "105 Proof: The Killing of Mack 'The Silencer' Klein." In addition to TLA, Eric has worked with Savage Umbrella, Live Action Set, Theatre in the Round, and Black Dirt Theater. He's quite attached to his middle name, thus the name of this company and how he usually appears in cast lists--as Eric Marinus.

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