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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Minnesota Fringe fosters celebration of the performing arts so that:

  • Artists are supported in the development of their craft;
  • Audiences expand their appreciation for and notions of art; and
  • The Community actively supports the theater.

Beginning in 2018, Fringe will offer a variety of open, supportive forums for free and diverse artistic expression to connect adventurous artists with adventurous audiences year round. Like our flagship festival, we have made every effort to reduce barriers by offering low-cost and free options in easily accessible venues so everyone feels welcome to attend. Please join us to support our creative community that makes Minnesota arts and culture so special.

For Fringe Fans who plan to attend multiple events, a Fringe with Benefits membership includes admission to ticketed events, special offers, and additional opportunities to demonstrate your commitment to sustain Fringe. Enroll online or purchase a membership in person at any of our events and provide critical support to help Fringe go round, year-round.

Upcoming Events Date(s) Get Tickets / Sign Up
Couple Fight : Best Of - The #1 selling show in the 2017 Minnesota Fringe Festival, and a top seller from 2015 and 2016, Couple Fight will present a compilation of their best bickering at the Bryant-Lake Bowl Theater on Cheap Date Night™ and Valentine’s Day. 6:30pm Doors 7:30pm Show

February 12, 2018 -or- February 14, 2018
Tickets available January 2, 2018 at www.bryantlakebowl.com

One ticket included in Fringe with Benefits
Festival Lottery Drawing - Join Minnesota Fringe as we select 2018 Festival participants from our lotteries, and announce 2018 Family Fringe shows. February 26, 2018

5:30pm Doors 6:30pm Event
Free - at Bryant-Lake Bowl Theater.
Drafts & Draughts - Surly Brewing and Minnesota Fringe are teaming up to bring innovation and community commitment together in a works-in-progress showcase. Enjoy short drafts of performances in various stages of development while sharing Surly draughts at the brewery space. April 9, 2018 -and- June 18, 2018

7:00pm Doors 7:30pm Show
Artist - Sign Up Link available in February

Audience - No Sign Up Required
Five Fifths - Fringe’s Annual Fundraiser May 7, 2018 Time TBD Tickets on Sale in March
2018 Minnesota Family Fringe - Multi-generational productions for kids and families interested in new and adventurous work. All theater shows at Celtic Junction Arts Center. Free stages and other entertainment at Family Fringe Central in Can Can Wonderland. August 2-5, 2018 -and- August 9-12, 2018 Tickets and Passes on Sale in July.

St. Paul
2018 Minnesota Fringe Festival - The 25th Annual performing arts festival featuring hundreds of performances on a variety of stages located in Cedar-Riverside and Northeast Minneapolis neighborhoods. August 2-12, 2018 Tickets and Passes on Sale in July