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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Showtimes

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.

Reservations

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.

Rules

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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Casey Marie Holmes' reviews

Jefferson Township Sparkling Junior Talent Pageant: A New Musical
The Must see show of fringe!

This will be the must see show of this years finge! Normally the word musical when talking about fringe is a red flag but this show is sooo well written. The story is well thought out, the characters well developed and the songs are well placed and have a purpose! The cast is so talented and the script is beautifully comedic! Go see it now!

Facility
Depressing but Amazing!

This show is so well done. The ensemble does an amazing job. This show is extremely hard to watch as it portrays everything about dementia and senior care that we like to try to forget/ignore. However I think it's a show everyone needs to see.

Good Kids
So Important!

I normally do not like to see shows that aren't originally written at the fringe but this show creates a conversation that is so important. Rape culture is strong and alive in our communities. Kudos to this talented cast of high schoolers for taking this responsibility on! This show makes you see and hear everything you do and don't want to hear about rape. The direction of the show is fantastic as well. Please go see this show and be apart of the discussion.

On The Exhale
A Must See!

You must see this show! The actress is amazing and the story is so powerful. You will cry and be taken on an emotional roller coaster. Yes this show is about guns but the conversation is COMPLETELY different, a new perspective.

Couple Fight 3: Weddings!
Funny for Fringe

This show relys on its relatability and would not survive outside of fringe. However I understand why this show has been so popular for the last 3 years. The cast is great at comedy and I was laughing my butt off as it reminded me of my husband and I were planning our wedding (relatability).

ODD MAN OUT
An Amazing Cast

All of the actors in this show are so talented and truly bring these torn characters to life! I expect nothing less from Underdog Theatre. Although the show was amazing and drew me in I was a little confused on the "Purpose" of the show. Its more of a snip-it of this families life than a full story.It ends at its climax and has absolutely no conclusion. (maybe this is just a preview for a fuller production yet to come?)

Frankenstein
A Good Exepriment

Fringe was the perfect place for this show to be put on. It was very experimental for both the company to create and perform and for the audience to watch. The concept is great! But the execution wasn't 100% there. It felt more like a theatre class project than an actual production. However cudos to the cast of young college students for opening up their minds and taking this project on! Their talent will add so much to this theatre community once they graduate!


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