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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Karley Anna

Years attending Fringe: 2-4 years
21-24 years old
Favorite genre: Dance

Karley Anna's reviews

Entertaining and almost there

The dancing was spectacular, the choreography was invigorating, the audience participation was exciting, but the attempted through line got confusing. Some performers were rocking the stage while others looked a bit bored. I did however, appreciate the low key message of how we humans treat our planet. Overall an exciting, talent filled performance!

The Simple Mind of Dillon Magee
Loved it then Lost it

I loved the performance, the mom and therapist were both wonderful but the actor playing Dillon did an outstanding job creating depth to a character with no text. This show kept me drawn in from the moment it started. My only critique was that I wanted more, I thought the story ended abruptly without too much resolve.

Nowhere in Glass
Almost Perfect

The opening song threw me a bit, wasn't their strongest piece to bring me into the show, but the acting was magnificent and the movement to portray the story was impeccable! I especially enjoyed the part where three of the performers became a dog creature, wonderful! Some of the sound cue times seemed a bit off and I found the lighting distracting. Overall wonderful show, made me think, was both humerus and serious. Congrats!

A Pocketful of Jewels: Dance Gems from North Africa & the Near East

The dancing was some of the most wonderful work I have seen in a while, I loved the variety and detail down the music and costumes. I, however, dreaded the moments between where the director came to talk, their speeches dragged on and gave info I did not need to enjoy the work. I did like the educational elements but I think it was too much and detracted from the show as a whole.

Passing the Poison
Great story, adequate execution

First: stunning performers! Well trained and energetic, great commitment to the characters. Yet, I think the movement missed the mark, some movement didn't make sense to further the story line and I questioned why it existed. I also really disliked the voice over for the mom and dad, why can't the performers just say them? Didn't make sense. Wonderful set, wonderful dancing, important story, maybe a little bit more work on the intention of the movement.

Slaughterhouse Five: A Musical
Didn't quite get it

This performance was humerus and entertaining but I think I missed the point. I haven't read the book and therefore didn't understand the show, though I don't feel there should be a prerequisite for being an audience member. I appreciated the music and intense, well choreographed, scene changes but left feeling confused and mostly unsettled.

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