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 850 performances of 167 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 Grumpy's Bar & Grill - Downtown, 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. Pro tip: 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 850 performances of 167 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 go live mid-November on this website. Fringe is open to everyone, all shows are selected by lottery, and you don't even need to have a show ready when you apply.

Attend: Thanks to the new day pass system, attending Fringe is easier and cheaper than ever.

Volunteer: Our 400+ 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 Grumpy's Bar & Grill - Downtown, 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 + Token = Your Admission

Everyone needs a valid pass to see a show. In addition to your pass, you will receive a token at the venue which guarantees you a seat. Turn in your token to the usher when you enter the theater.

More information about passes and policies here.


Optional reservations guarantee a seat for a particular performance and can be purchased online in advance. You must also have a valid to get in. Day passes can be bought online with a reservation to save time, and can be picked up at the venue box office 30 minutes before the performance.

More information about reservations here.


For everyone's safety, Fringe does not allow late seating or re-admission. Photos and video are prohibited without written permission from the production staff. Fringe cannot provide refunds or exchanges.

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Debacle: Stories of Life's Ultimate Fiascos!

By La Vie Theatre
Created by Jason Schommer & Allison Broeren

Playing at Ritz Theater Mainstage


Just so you know, this show contains Adult language.

Acclaimed storytellers Allison and Jason reveal how their seemingly innocent choices lead them astray into some of life's craziest blunders from evil cat sitting, dirty ice cream, drug dens and so much more!

The creators say this show is appropriate for ages 16+


Thu, 8/3 @ 8:30pm


Sat, 8/5 @ 4:00pm


Tue, 8/8 @ 10:00pm


Sat, 8/12 @ 7:00pm


Sun, 8/13 @ 2:30pm

* 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.

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Cast and crew

Allison Broeren

Storyteller / Writer / Co-Producer

“Bombastic…totally kinetic.” – City Pages

“A verbal tornado.” – Womb With A View.

Allison Broeren is a storyteller and show producer. Allison is the Co-Owner of Strike Theater, brains behind ComCon and the Director of Word Sprout running the oldest and feistiest Poetry and Story Slams in the Twin Cities. She has performed on the Moth Mainstage, NPR, KFAI radio, the MN Book Awards, Tour de Fat, and coffee tables through the midwest, and has co-lead an MPR storytelling trip through Greece with Kevin Kling. Previous Fringe Shows include All the Things I Never Told My Mother, I’ll Marry You For Health Insurance and Pants on Fire.

Jason Schommer

Storyteller / Writer / Co-Producer

“You’ll love Jason. Jason is funny, clever, smart, and on his way to the big time!”. – Louie Anderson, Emmy Award Winning Entertainer.

“Fans of Kathy Griffin will find much to enjoy here, as the pair share the ability to make the audience feel as if they're sitting in on catty gossip over cocktails. “
-- Ross Raihala, Pioneer Press

Jason is a standup comedian and storyteller who spent two years as the opening act for comedy legend Louie Anderson in Las Vegas and continues to tour with Louie regularly. Jason ventured into the world of stand up comedy while working on The Rosie O’Donnell Show in New York City. The show’s writers thought he was funny, so they signed him up to perform at the New York Comedy Club. Since then he has performed all over the USA and beyond at clubs and theaters in New York City, Hollywood, Las Vegas, Chicago, New Orleans, Canada as well as Japan where he performed for the troops stationed in Okinawa! A natural storyteller, Jason has performed at The Moth, The Moth Grand Slam, StorySlam, and numerous other storytelling shows. Jason, named “What’s Hot For 2013” by Campus Activities Magazine, was a popular feature on K102 Country Music Morning Show with “From the Trailer” and KFAN radio as the gossip and entertainment reporter. He has also appeared numerous times on Cities97, KDWB, KQ92 and Mix94.9. Previous Fringe Festival productions include STARF*CKER, Wonderland, Beer Goggles: The Musical and Shameless. Jason also produced the long running comedy series “The Big Gay Comedy Show”, “Last Laugh” and “The LOL OMG Show!”. Jason recently appeared at Ignite Minneapolis with his love letter to Madonna and released his first live comedy album “Confessions of a Local Celebrity”.

Katy Vernon


"One of the Twin Cities’ most beloved folky singer/songwriters.” Star Tribune. Chris Riemenschneider.

Ukulele songbird Katy Vernon, singer of sad songs on a happy instrument, was born and raised in London, UK, but in the past dozen or so years has established herself as one of the busiest musicians in town. Whether it's appearing with Garrison Keillor, the James Sewell Ballet, or her annual Uke Fest benefit, Katy has used her love of singing and playing ukulele, to make musical connections far and wide. This summer she will be appearing with her full band at the State Fair as well as several other big shows. She recently returned from a six week tour of the UK.


Wendy Maybury

Promo Image Photographer

Wendy Maybury’s report cards always said, “Wendy shares too much with her neighbors and disrupts the class." What they should have said was, “Wendy would be an awesome comedian!" Wendy loves to make people laugh by entertaining them with stories about her crazy Southern family and more recently, new motherhood. She placed in the Funniest Person with a Day Job contest in 2011. She was voted by her peers as "Favorite New Comic & Favorite Female Comic". Wendy has quickly become one of the most requested performers in the Midwest. Whether she's in a dive bar, or opening for Louie Anderson for several thousand people at the Minneapolis convention center, Wendy Maybury is a comedic force to be reckoned with. Wendy is a comedy superstar in the making, so catch her while she's still humble and gives hugs after the show.

NOTE: Wendy is also an incredibly talented photographer and shot our promo image. Check her out online…she’s hilarious as well (even though she’s not in this show). - Jason

More information

Powerhouse performers Jason Schommer (STARF*CKER, Wonderland and Beer Goggles: The Musical) and Allison Broeren (All the Things I Never Told My Mother, I’ll Marry You For Health Insurance and Pants on Fire) have joined forces for what is sure to be a unique and unforgettable do-not-miss show. Digging deep into their lifetime of unexpectedly crazy moments, they’re hitting the stage in a show that is alternately hilarious and poignant.  Joining them onstage is musician and rising star Katy Vernon.  

City Pages says Allison is “Bombastic…totally kinetic”. 

Comedy Icon Louie Anderson raves “Jason is funny, clever, smart, and on his way to the big time!”. 

Star Tribune praises Katy as "One of the Twin Cities’ most beloved folky singer/songwriters.”.


Bollywood Dance Scene