Posted by Graydon Royce
Interest in the Minnesota Fringe Festival has stayed high. The 11-day festival of theater and performing arts experienced a 13 percent jump in attendance last August and now a record 386 applications have been submitted for this year’s event. That’s up 22 percent from 2009.
A lottery (open to the public) will be at 7 p.m., Feb. 17 at Bedlam Theatre, 1501 S. 6th St., Minneapolis, to choose approximately 150 shows. There are reserved slots: ten for kids shows; ten for teens; 15 for artitst of color; 10 international and 20 national. Within those categories, though, the selections are nonjuried and by chance.
Fourteen states and three nations (outside of the United States) are represented in the applications. Robin Gillette, the Fringe’s executive director, said there is a 60-40 split between veterans and newcomers in the mix. The previous high for applications was 327 in 2007.
The Fringe Festival will be Aug. 5-15 in venues through Minneapolis and St. Paul. Last year’s event sold a record 46,216 tickets in 22 venues. The best box-office gross was 2006, with $338,181. The Minnesota Fringe is the third oldest such festival in the United States and the largest nonjuried Fringe.