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.

Yep. That's right. Each year we select our lineup by placing numbered ping-pong balls into a bingo cage and pulling 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 and provides the support to make producing a show as easy as possible.

Anyone (yes, anyone) can apply to have a show in the festival. If you'd like to have a show in the 2017 festival, applications will go live in November here on our website.

Minnesota Fringe is one of many fringe festivals across the nation and around the world. Check the rest of 'em out here.

The mission of the Minnesota Fringe is to promote freedom and diversity of artistic expression by linking adventurous artists with adventurous audiences.

characters_showtimes

Showtimes

Shows start and end on time at the Fringe. With 880 performances of 169 shows in just 11 days, we're on a tight schedule. Shows 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 the weekends there are additional shows at 1pm, 2:30pm and 4pm.

Late seating: There is NO LATE SEATING at Minnesota Fringe. Here's why. Beyond keeping the festival running on schedule, our primary reason for no late seating is safety.

Safety for people on stage: 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 our patrons: Entering a darkened theater (and possibly the first time a patron has been in a particular space) and trying to find open seats is not only dangerous for the late patron but also for our volunteers and any seated patrons as well.

Fringe Central

Fringe Central, sponsored by Surly Brewing and hosted by Republic, 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 (or two) and talk. Talk about what you loved. Talk about what you didn’t. Meet the artists behind the shows and find out what you should see tomorrow. You never know what will happen at the Fringe, but dropping by Central gives you a serious head start.

characters_what_to_wear

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.

characters_choosing

Choosing a Show

With 169 shows to choose from, it's scandalous to see just one. But how to choose your perfect lineup?

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

Talk to people: It only sounds scary. Just look for the folks in lanyards. Pro tip: Lanyards indicate Fringe artists - they'll be glad 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.

Get Involved

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

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!

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

Create your own show: Applications for the 2017 festival will go live mid-November on this website. The 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.

Box Office Info

Reservations are optional and may be bought in advance through the Fringe website. Advance sales stop at 1 pm on weekdays and 10 am on weekends. A reservation guarantees you a seat for the show. You must also be wearing a day pass wristband to get in. Day pass wristbands can be purchased at any Fringe venue 30 minutes prior to show time, as well as online with a reservation.

Purchases made in advance allow you to bypass the venue box office completely. Check in with a Fringe volunteer at the house door to pick up your reservation starting 30 minutes before show time. Once reservations are purchased, they are guaranteed and will NOT be resold.

Payment methods: Fringe accepts cash, all major credit cards and checks made out to "Minnesota Fringe Festival."

Kids at Fringe: There is a recommended minimum age for each (see individual show pages on our website). It is up to the parent/guardian to make the final decision; Fringe makes no guarantees about content.

Day pass wristbands: ALL patrons must have a wristband to see a show. Your wristband serves as your pass to any show in the festival on a given day. Wristbands are $16 on weekdays; $22 on weekends.

Wristbands for kids 12 and under will be available in the venues during the festival for $5 every day.

Late seating: Nope.

Refunds: Nuh uh.

Dawn Bentley, MNM, MBA

Executive Director

dawnDawn joins the Fringe in April 2017 with a leadership expertise focused on navigating strategic vision to achieve greatest potential. In her previous position as the first Executive Director of Art Shanty Projects, she was charged with creating infrastructure and establishing improved outcomes in all key functional areas. Dawn is an arts aficionado and has played violin for over 25 years in various ensembles from rock bands to professional orchestras with a dozen recordings in her repertoire. She holds Masters degrees in Nonprofit Management and Business Administration from Hamline University in St. Paul, MN.


Jackie Nelson

Interim Executive Director

jackieJackie joined the Fringe staff in January 2017 as the Interim Executive Director while the Board searches for the perfect fit to be the new Executive Director. Jackie is a past patron of the Fringe and an enthusiastic performing and visual arts supporter. Her previous position was Deputy Director at the Interact Center for the Visual and Performing Arts. Jackie started out in corporate management roles but has found her true niche in the non-profit world. She graduated from the University of Minnesota with a B.A. in English.
Email Jackie


Amber Bjork

Office Manager / Artist Liaison

amberAmber has spent several years acting, directing, writing, and producing as a Fringe artist before joining the staff as Office Manager and Artist Liaison in 2014. In her time outside of the office, she is a freelance artist and serves as the founding member of The Winding Sheet Outfit. She holds a B.A. in English Lit from University of Minnesota-Duluth and is a recipient of a 2014 St. Paul Arts Challenge grant from the Knight Foundation.
Email Amber


Liz Neerland

Interim Associate Director / Technical Director

lizLiz joined the Fringe family in 2000. In her first year, she served as Assistant Box Office Manager, and was a venue technician from 2001-2013. In 2014, she stepped up to the Technical Director post, and is now also serving as the Interim Associate Director. Liz is also the co-Artistic Director and Managing Director of nimbus, and Venue Manager for The Crane Theater, their new performance space in Northeast Minneapolis. Liz is a native of Minneapolis and a graduate of Grinnell College with a degree in Anthropology.
Email Liz


Kaitlen Osburn

Volunteer Services Coordinator

kaitlenKaitlen has been fringing since 2010, first with the Chicago Fringe, then joining the front-of-house staff in Minnesota in 2013. She holds a BFA from Western Kentucky University and an MFA from Dell'Arte International in Ensemble-Based Physical Theatre. Kaitlen is a 2011 alumnus of Director's Lab Chicago, a 2014 Princess Grace Award Winner, and a 2016 grant recipient of the Puffin Foundation. When she isn't coordinating Fringe front-of-house, she devises original work, teaches future theatre makers, and she is a freelance grant writer.
Email Kaitlen


Craig VanDerSchaegen

Online Services Director

craigCraig has been responsible for the ongoing development of Minnesota Fringe's online presence since 2007. In addition, Craig has been a volunteer photographer since 2005. Outside of his work for Fringe, Craig is a freelance web developer and photographer with a studio in Northeast Minneapolis.
Email Craig

Board of Directors

David Frank, President
City of Minneapolis

Annie Scott Riley, Vice President
Carmichael Lynch Relate

Kyle Orwick, Treasurer
Eide Bailly

David Brookins, Secretary
BMO Harris

Danna Mirviss
PACER Center

Connie Cameron
Independent School District 287, Plymouth, MN

Kathy Kim
UnitedHealth Group

Sarah Schneeberger
RBC

Christopher Bineham
The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra

Note: Organizations are listed for identification purposes only.

20160919