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.



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.


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.


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.




The Nutcracker and the Mouse King

By Jeremy Terry Productions
Written by Brendan Jones
Playing at Ritz Theater Proscenium


Literary adaptation, First-time Minnesota Fringe Festival producer


Just so you know, this show contains Violence, Strobe lights.

Enter a world of magic, friendship, love, and betrayal. Based on the book by ETA Hoffman and the beloved "Nutcracker Ballet", the show dives into the background of the characters you thought you knew.

The creators say this show is appropriate for ages 7-11 and up


Sat, 8/6 @ 10:00pm


Sun, 8/7 @ 5:30pm


Tue, 8/9 @ 5:30pm


Fri, 8/12 @ 10:00pm


Sat, 8/13 @ 7:00pm

Ticket Options

Your wristband serves as your pass to any show in the festival on a given day. Wristbands are $16 on weekdays; $22 on weekends. Optional reservations to guarantee a seat for any performance are available by clicking the "reserve" button above. Wristbands can be purchased in advance with reservations or at any venue box office during the festival.

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

You don't have to buy a 2016 Fringe button, but you might just want to. It identifies you as a part of our incredible Fringe community and gets you great deals at these local bars and restaurants. Get yours at any Fringe preview event or Fringe venue during the festival.

Read the reviews

Must see show!

by Raquel Hanson on August 14, 2016
This user has reviewed 2 shows

I love this performance! I would go and watch it again.

Pretty good acting, sloppy direction

by Mari Nets on August 14, 2016
This user has reviewed 1 show

I will start by saying that I enjoy the work of most of the actors. I could tell a lot of work went into this and I appreciated it. Having said that, the writing and direction were very sloppy. The dancing was under rehearsed, and aspects of the plot became lost in strange blocking choices. Again, the actors did what they could and I encourage them all the keep up the good work. But not worth the time.

The Nutcracker and the Mouse King

by Sandra Thompson on August 13, 2016
This user has reviewed 2 shows

Excellent program and actors I could have watched this for longer. Had good story and actors were really good.

Awesome Performance

by Tammy Tyer on August 13, 2016
This user has reviewed 2 shows

This was a great show with awesome performers

My Favorite Ballet

by Jeanette Chalgren on August 13, 2016
This user has reviewed 41 shows

I LOVE the Nutcracker! So this was definitely on my list. I really liked the story and thought it was a unique show. The dancing, while not really part of the storyline, wasn't great. And I was a bit confused of who to root for, but overall good show. Worth it if you have a gap in your schedule and you're nearby.

Good for all Fringe Goers

by Cheryl Ullyot on August 10, 2016
This user has reviewed 1 show

A charming prequel to The Nutcracker, with familiar characters-Marie, the Nutcracker, the Mouse King, Drosselmeire. Energetic cast, an impressive choreographed fight scene. Good for kids. Enjoyed it.

1 person found this review helpful


by Lonnie Ebertowski on August 10, 2016
This user has reviewed 10 shows

The idea was interesting and I'm a fan of the Nutcracker story, but this felt drawn out and scattered. It was also hard to tell how the story fit together until nearly the end and at that point they'd already lost me. If going I'd suggest planning your Fringe schedule accordingly, as this was just a couple minutes short of an hour.

1 person found this review helpful

Excellent Interpretation

by Joshua Palmer on August 10, 2016
This user has reviewed 3 shows

A classic story many grew up with, including myself, makes for a guaranteed emotional reaction. The production was energetic and memorable. It was impressive they fit it all under an hour! It's a new interpretation that has real potential if extended to make an old story fresh again.

1 person found this review helpful

Worth Checking Out

by Matt Pitts on August 10, 2016
This user has reviewed 24 shows

This show is a great space filler if you aren't sure what to see. It tells the story of the characters in a very playful and heartbreaking way. I just feel like it is too big of a story for a one hour show and wish there could have been more.

1 person found this review helpful

Fun show, great for kids

by Libby Anderon on August 9, 2016
This user has reviewed 1 show

I really enjoyed seeing the backstory to the ballet that I love. It seems like there is potential for the show to be much longer, there is a lot of plot packed into an hour. I think kids would really enjoy it. The cast was all very committed, and the Mouse King was especially powerful.

Picking Up Steam

by JJ Kraukrau on August 9, 2016
This user has reviewed 5 shows

As someone who doesn't know the story of the Nutcracker all that well, I didn't know what to expect from this show. I was blown away, however, by both the earnest and engaging acting and the radical, wild re-imagining of the source material. The characters were interesting, the story had me eager to know what would happen next, and again, the acting was solid across the board.

The first third or so dragged, story-wise, and a number of scenes felt directionless and slow at first. Nearing the halfway point, though, the plot exploded into a much more interesting story. I think if there was a way to inject that energy and creativity into the opening moments, this show would be even better.

1 person found this review helpful

Skip it

by Mark Webb on August 8, 2016
This user has reviewed 55 shows

I know there's a great story behind this one, but the show seemed more like a high school skit than anything else. I took nothing away from this show.

Great Fun

by lel lelerson on August 7, 2016
This user has reviewed 1 show

A fun loving show with a fun loving cast. This show is powered by a heartfelt cast who brings a fun life to an old tale. The Mouse King takes your breath away with his powerful acting and Marie warms your heart as she follows her own heart after the nutcracker. The cast is beautiful and the simplistic nature of the set and costumes really helps highlight the beauty of the story. Beautiful show, great for family's with children going to the Fringe!

Cute, fun, feel good time!

by Elizabeth Powers on August 7, 2016
This user has reviewed 7 shows

This is a really cute show with a sweet story and solid performances all around from the cast. Definitely a fun, enjoyable experience that is worth your time to check out. Especially good if you are fringing with kids!

A new spin on classic characters

by Devan Sayles on August 7, 2016
This user has reviewed 2 shows

After seeing a lineup of comedy, dancing, and other experimental theatrical formats, it felt refreshing to watch this very traditional style production. The show paints an interesting back story for the Nutcracker and Mouse King. Solid dramatic performances by the cast (Mouse King was the standout actor!), and our group appreciated that they were all very easy to hear and understand. They could have woven even more classuc Nutcracker music into the performance, there were tastes of it but I wanted a bit more to really drive the theme home.

1 person found this review helpful

Cast and crew

Jonathan Dull


Jonathon is an actor, writer, dancer, and choreographer in Minneapolis. He graduated from Viterbo University in La Crosse, WI with a BFA in Acting and a minor in Dance. Previous Roles: Frank in "A Chorus Line" (Ordway Music Theater); Pontius Pilate in "The Last Days of Judas Iscariot" (Stage of Fools Theatre); Ensemble in "The Little Pilot" (Sandbox Theatre); Borachio/Friar Francis in "Much Ado About Nothing" (The Public Theater of Minnesota); Bennett in "Private Party" (Red Eye Theater); Charles Lindbergh in "Hauptmann" (Candid Theater Company, 2014)

Jeremy Johnson


Jeremy is excited to be a part of this wizard production. This is his first time acting in the MN Fringe Festival. He has recently appeared as The Cat in the Hat (Seussical), Buckley Dunstan (Father of the Bride), Lank Hawkins (Crazy for You), and Sir Harry (Once Upon a Mattress).​

Kaitlin Noble


Kaitlin Noble is a born and raised New York actress and is thrilled to return to the role of Marie. She participated in the first staged reading of "The Nutcracker and the Mouse King" last summer. She is a proud member of the NYC Pit and performs weekly on the Super Free Monday team Chariot as an Improviser. Select credits include Claudio (Measure for Measure; Women's Work Festival), Emily Webb (Our Town; Summit Central Players) and The Youngest Daughter (East of the Sun, West of the Moon; The Gallery Players). KaitlinNoble.com

Paul Brissett


Paul has played numerous roles in Northern Minnesota amateur productions—including Harpagon in "The Miser", Danforth in "The Crucible" and the Ghost in "Hamlet." He moved to the Twin Cities in July 2015 to seek roles in the incredible theater community here, and to be closer to his grandchildren.

Kelly Anderson

Mrs. Stahlbaum/Various

Recently graduated from Bethel University with a B.A. in Theatre Arts, Kelly Anderson is delighted to participate in her first year at the MN Fringe Festival as a part of this beautiful new play! Most recently, Kelly has performed as Lizzie in "110 in the Shade" and Rosalind in "As You Like It" at Bethel University. Some of her favorite credits include Ensemble in "Lady, Be Good" (Only a Dim Image), Daisy in "Vintage Hitchcock" (Union Street Players), and Aunt Julie in the world premiere of "Hedda!" (Bethel University).

Anna Baker


Anna is in her final year at North Central University, pursuing dual B.A. degrees in Vocal Performance and Theater. Her most recent roles include Jo March in "Little Women"; Anne Frank in "Yours, Anne"; and Maria in "The Sound of Music" (North Central University). She loves her job teaching voice, piano, acting and cello with Bravura Music School, and is thrilled to be making her MN Fringe Festival debut with Jeremy Terry Productions!

John Michael Bradshaw


John Michael Bradshaw is more than thrilled to be following The Nutcracker and the Mouse King to MN Fringe after the premiere reading in New York! He is currently in production for a music video for Drew Gasparini's song "Valley High." Past credits: "The Irish Curse" (Keiran), "The Diviners" (Buddy), "25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee" (Leaf). Special thanks: Jeremy, Taryn, Mom, Dad. @JohnMBradshaw.

Lily Hart

Princess Prilipat/Various

Lily is currently a student at the University of Minnesota, but has been involved in theater long before she came to Minneapolis. She began doing plays with Theater for Young Audiences and her passion for it grew with the Kohler Drama Program. She has enjoyed performing roles such as Cecily from "The Importance of Being Earnest", Logan from "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee", and more recently acting in "Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead" at the U. She is immensely grateful to be taking this role as this is her first performance with the Minnesota Fringe Festival

Christopher Kent

Dr. Stahlbaum/Various

Christopher Kent received his BA in Acting/Directing from Iowa State University and is new to the Minneapolis theatre scene. He was most recently seen as Benedick in Cromulent Shakespheare's "Much Ado About Nothing". A few favorite roles include Salieri, Melchior, Thenadier, Jack Skellington, and Long John Silver. He is pleased to be a part of this ensemble and hopes you enjoy this inventive new work.

Emily Kueppers


Emily Kueppers is very excited to be participating in her very first show with the Fringe Festival. Emily is currently a sophomore at Champlain College in Burlington, VT where they study Creative Media and minor in Public Relations. Emily loves improv comedy, singing, and dogs. If you're ever in need of a dog sitter you've found one here. Emily would like to thank everyone for coming out to the Fringe Festival and supporting local theater!

Mason Tyer

General Volkov/Various

Mason is a recent graduate of Iowa State University and a new resident of Minneapolis. Recent credits include Classical Actors Ensemble (Macbeth, Julius Caesar, A Midsummer Night’s Dream), Six Elements Theatre (She Kills Monsters) 2015 Minnesota Fringe (Pocahontas), and North Hennepin Community College (Violet: A Musical). Outside of performing, he enjoys directing and teaching to those willing to explore. masontyer@gmail.com

More information

Marie Stahlbaum is a rebellious spirit, forced to grow up in a very proper and sensible household. Her world changes one Christmas Eve when her Godfather Drosselmeire arrives with a peculiar toy – a nutcracker doll. Realizing there is more to the gift than just a doll Marie begins to wonder where this nutcracker came from. She learns of the magical Land of Sweets, where two friends are competing for the affection of the beautiful Princess Prilipat. After encountering betrayal, magic, and heartbreak, the two boys become bitter enemies – one bent on destroying the kingdom, and one who will do anything to protect it. Marie realizes that their final battle is coming tonight, and she may be the key to winning.

The Nutcracker and the Mouse King is a new play by Brendan Jones, based on the book by E.T.A. Hoffmann and the beloved Nutcracker Ballet. After a well-received reading in New York, the world-premiere performances will be held as a part of the Minnesota Fringe Festival at the Ritz Theatre. The show features an original score by Aaron Latina, choreography by Gina Light, and direction by Fiona Lotti.

 Come discover the characters you love and the story you only thought you knew.

 For more information on the show, visit www.thenutcrackerplay.com.

 Connect with us on social media! @NutcrackerPlay on Instagram and #NutcrackerPlay on Twitter and Facebook.

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