Saturday, December 8, 2007

Review: San Francisco Fringe

Review: San Francisco Fringe

Mr. Fringey's Description: Fringe in a Yurt with a side of Dennis Hopper
Mr. Fringey’s Festival Ranking: 5 bow ties out of 5

Sunny-side: You’ll really feel taken care of here as a performer and they really hold your hand. They’ve got the fringe system wired. Fringe application fees are low. The quality of edgy work is the best in the world. You’ll most likely make some LA entertainer connections. 420 is the official deodorant of the theatre district.

Flip-side: If Taylor Street was in any other city I would have felt really unsafe. I slipped in a pool of vomit going to my venue on the first night and then was chased by a naked homeless man after my show. I was like, “Wow, I’m definitely not in Virginia anymore. Am I still on planet earth?”

Your Money Sock: Dude, leave your money sock at home. Although housing is expensive if you choose to live there, everything else is dirt cheap, especially the mongo-sized burritos in the Mission. Tons of cheap organic food. Get housing with your old hippie friend from college and you’ll come out of this fringe ahead!

How to Fill Your Seats: Stand outside the most popular shows and hand out your cards as others exit and enter the show. The crowds are here and they’re there to see shows. If you get your cards in some hands, you can pack your venue. Hands-down the easiest fringe to pack a house – even on off days and times. I watched Jimmy Hogg impressively sell out nearly every one of his “Curriculum Vitae,” shows here.

Marketing Angle: This is a fringe where audience members actually read the on-line reviews and the reviews in the weeklies. No need for a marketing angle here. Do your typical postcard salsa dance, hit up your Myspace list and your San Fran contacts via e-mail. An easy fringe to market. Bonus Tip: Since the venues are in the theater district downtown, it would benefit you to take postcards to all the hotels in the area that are close to Taylor Street. Also, give postcards to the Hotel shuttle drivers who will in turn give them to their passengers.

Fringe Specs:

Age in Fringe Years: A hip and hot home-schooled 17 year old who is Harvard-bound via the Ken Kesey bus.

Festival Dates: September 3-14

Application Deadline: January 25.

Applying: On-line application form with $35.

Festival Cost: $475

Ticket Prices: 0-$9 – Performers see other shows for free.

Payment: 100% of door. In cash each night. Other money sent within 2 weeks. (I got my money about 10 days later)

Showcase: Two showcases. One for in-town performers and one for out of town performers.

Venue Location: All venues are within a two block radius from one another. Fringe Central houses a café where artists hang out between shows.

Travel: Fly into San Fran airport and then take the Bart into the city to your destination. You can get a ticket at the Bart kiosk for $2.75. It’s extremely easy.

Travel Advisory: By foot, by bike, by bus, by Bart! Biking kicks ass in San Fran!

1 comment:

SF Fringe said...

Applications for the 2008 San Francisco Fringe Festival (September 3-14, 2008) are available at and are being accepted until January 25, 2008.