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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Janis Emily Peabody's reviews

The Masque of Power

Fun to watch with many good political points made. The family relationship made for good comic relief and totally authentic looking. The monologue from MACBETH was breathtaking.

RomCom-Con: A Meet-Cute Musical
If you like RomComs (and I do)

If you do not like Rom Com's do not see this show. If you do, you are in for a treat. Pacing might be tightened up, some of the actors could be louder, but it was a delight for me to watch and engage in.

Crash and Burn: An American success story

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.

Couple Fight 3: Weddings!

Only problem with this show is that I kept looking for Tom Reed, and he was ??? Doing another show? The vignettes were all deliciously engaging. It is always so fun to see a personal slice of life from my favorite community performers.

The Pursuit of Awesome
I love this guy

David Harris is so skilled and yet approaches his performances with such humility. He is a blast to watch. His use of media and sound overs took things out of the ball park for me.

A Pickle
Great script and Acting

This show didn't need gimmicks because the script and acting was superb. There is an element of social justice as well as devastating childhood memories. It worked for me.

Live From New York, He's A Prom Date!
Great performance

I hate it when people give a show a bad review because it wasn't what they expected. READ THE DESCRIPTION! This show was well done, the acting funny and delightfully sentimental. The music touching and well performed. It touched me, and personally, I like that.

Funny and engaging

I built a night around making this show and it did not disappoint.

The Zoo Story (New Version)

A delightful production of a good play.

Out of the Shadows

The performer was dazzling as a dancer and sincere as a spokesperson. I wanted to send a bottle of vodka to the dressing room.

The Mysterious Old Radio Listening Society
Detail attention was phenominal

Great show with wonderful acting and excellent mood enhancing sound and costumes. A must see.

Gruesome Playground Injuries

What a sad story! Very well done.


This guy is professional with a fun show. The more audience the more fun. There is interaction with audience but it feels safe and best of al. He has a message too!

The Buttslasher
Noire, noire, noire

An excellent capture of a noire feeling. Well paced and well performed, but I had my doubts about how based on a real story this actually was. I remember a bicycle butt slasher in the twin cities once upon a time. Is that what this was supposed to be based on?

Much Ado About Nothing (as told by Dogberry and Verges)
Good stuff and

Shakespeare is always good for you and what a treat when it is put together with so much fun.

Great show

This show was well performed and created much discussion. Thank you!

The Banana Wars
Thank you

Thanks for putting so much passion into this valuable history lesson. The performance was quickly paced to keep us listening with concentration.

Anarchy! (a handbook)

I am really glad I decided to make it a late night and catch this production. Performers were all great and the debate that came out of this show led to many discussions.

William & Mary: The Way Out Experiment
Great story

Well performed and totally intriguing.

Don't miss

This show was an incredible slice of life for me. A real insight into the black experience. At the same time it was dangerously close to tragic, it was full of sharp comic relief. Great production!

Lettres et Café

I loved the concept, delighted in the romance, captivated by the lighting and set, and enjoyed all the acting.

The Memory Box of the Sisters Fox
Historical and Eerie

I loved this show. Acting was incredible and the fact that it was based on a true story totally captivated me and left me wanting to learn more.

Colorful and exciting

Great costumes, good use of light, excellent dancing.

Stranger-er Things: Netflix and KILL
Great energy

The only thing that didn't work for me in this show was that it was Sci-fi and that genre just doesn't do much for me. The performance however was great.

There Ain't No More!

I love Out-of-Towners and this one did not disappoint. His knowledge of music and his Southern flair was mesmerizing and delightful to experience.

Whisper Into My Good Ear
Well done but very dark

Acting was phenomenal, but why couldn't there have been more movement? It was painful to watch in a good way.

The Ballad of Bearclaw Jones
Funny and well done

Delightful production, so glad I got in.

Fruit Flies Like a Banana: WORLD TOUR
Great stuff

These guys never disappoint. Such talent, such musical knowledge and oh so fun to watch.


Loved the twists. Fun for all including the kids. Great acting. Nice set. All good.

Hot Air
Sharp and well styled

This was a great show with incredible use of lighting effects and a wonderful script. If you could understand it. Often lines were delivered too quickly. They were inaudible and the actors had poor annunciation. For me this meant that it was hard to follow the action and plot, even though I really did try.

Broad Sex in the Twin Cities
Delightful local references

Great idea for a show, and I loved the local references, but I had a hard time hearing the dialog as it was not well annunciated and a bit too fast paced with many lines dropped. Partially my fault, I do have a hearing disability, but honestly I only caught some of this script. Energy level was great.

Sevlin & Devlin Presents: Seven Evans in Heaven
Mostly funny

I loved the concept but some of the performers were too over the top and that distracted me from the show.

Sean Neely
Truth or Theater

I've always been of the opinion that therapy is not art. Or was it? Was this just a random monologue by a character, separate from the performer? It was passionately delivered and I felt his pain, the acting therefore was good. I felt a desire to continue the discussion after the performance, but the opportunity did not arise. Had I done so, I would have said: Keep creating as a way of dealing with what may be a confusion in your sense of childish/sexual play. These three things: creativity, sexuality and childhood are interconnected. It is good to create and the more you channel yourself in that direction and mature your creativity the less likely to "offend" you will become. I hope these thoughts help the character you were playing.

The Wright Stuff, or You'll Believe They Can Fly!

I laughed and enjoyed myself at this performance, but at times things were over the top and I lost interest. Some performers, in my opinion, should tone it down.

Who would have thought?

Ben San Del is more than a comedian. He is also a writer with a bent toward Sci fi. I personally do not much like Sci fi, but it made for an interesting show and he did a great job.

It Can't Happen Here

Lots of people on stage, a fascinating story and frighteningly thought provoking. But with so many people on board, there are bound to be some that aren't as good as others and that can detract from the total of the show.

A Bollywood Twistery
Great music and dance

Nice costumes too, but I could not catch the dialog very clearly and so I was left guessing at the plot.

The Simple Mind of Dillon Magee
More please!

Touching story, well performed, just too short.

Be Your Selfie!
Great use of media

Characters were interesting and fun to watch, the use of media was totally captivating. But the plot....well, it never really engaged me. Sorry.

Hello, I Must Be Going...
Its another 4 1/2

Ari was incredible as Groucho, the other players were all good as well. Properties were weak, but music was well chosen.

Intermediate Physical Comedy for Advanced Beginners

This show started for me as a five star. Totally captivating. Then it got gradually tiresome. Still, it was one of my favorite shows.

Blood Debt
Edgy Finish

This show was educational and intense. It had an incredible finish. But, the players were a bit monotone and it eventually began to drag on me.

Dame daDA & the Meta Show
Caution: Participation to be Expected

I liked this show a lot. For the most part the participation was not intrusive and it actually made this feel more to me like a workshop than a show. As such, I think we all gained something from it and our world views were expanded. There were laughs too.

Blackout Improv

I did not even know that this comic team existed in the Twin Cities, now that I do, I will want to see them again.

Death in Yosemite: A comedic adaptation of the Non-Fiction Book
Engaging Premise

Interesting script, but needs tightening. Some of the gags didn't work (pacing, sloppiness, lack of commitment) Maybe a soundtrack was needed to help build the mood, the acting just wasn't enough. At times it seemed just too slow and I admit, I nodded. Perhaps actors needed to raise their own stakes, add more tension and less slapstick.


I didn't much like the expected audience participation. I did like the eerie quality of the show. Eating cereal off the floor was funny, but also pretty depressing.

Wait...didn't Patrick's Cabaret close?
Nice concept

Happy to see that so many people got involved in this production and that this group exists in our community.

The Second Banana Revolt!
Too much

Great community theater effort. Nice to see well disciplined child actors on stage. The concept was familiar and there was too much happening. Many of the voices did not carry. Even though the plot was obvious, it was often hard to make out what was going on.

Sunrise Banks