In case you didn’t notice, the Fringe starts tomorrow

This is news for the we-spent-the-winter-under-a-rock set: The Fringe starts Thursday.

And in case you need to know the basics, here they are, from Fringe vice pooh-bah George Wallace:

The Orlando International Fringe Theatre Festival is proud to announce the 2010 Fringe Festival, held May 20 through May 31 in Orlando’s Loch Haven Park. Tickets are available for purchase at www.orlandofringe.org, or during the festival at the box office.

Voted Best Festival by the Orlando Weekly and Orlando Sentinel, the 2010 Orlando International Fringe Theatre Festival will include over 500 theatrical performances held over a twelve-day period, throughout eleven venues at the Orlando Repertory Theatre and the Lowndes Shakespeare Center. In true Fringe style, in addition to traditional stages, theatrical venues will also include a closet, and – a complete first – Wekiwa Springs State Park! The Orlando Fringe Festival officially kicks off at 5 pm on Thursday, May 2 on the Green Lawn of Fabulousness (the green space at Loch Haven Park) with a ribbon cutting ceremony and VIP gala sponsored by Funky Monkey Wine Bar and Fuze Beverage. The festival will be in full-swing that very evening, with shows opening in every venue.

“The theme of this year’s festival is “recession-proof entertainment,” says Fringe Artistic Producing Director Beth Marshall. “Shows range in price from free to just ten dollars, meaning that there is a Fringe experience for every budget. We’re proud to be one of the most inclusive arts groups in our community, and to have been recognized for this with the prestigious Community Engagement Award from United Arts of Central Florida.”

Fringe festivities continue daily through the 31st of May, with the festival open from 5 pm to midnight during the week, and 10 am to midnight on Saturdays and Sundays (visit www.orlandofringe.org to view the schedule of shows and purchase tickets!). Weekends on the lawn will also feature KIDS FRINGE, sponsored by Walt Disney World Resorts, and offering free arts and theatre activities for the whole family from 10 am to 4:00 pm. Visual Fringe, produced by local artist Anna McCambridge, will be on display throughout the festival, with many of the works available for purchase (100% of the profits returning to the artists!). Monday, May 31, Memorial Day, features Patron’s Pick, with each of the venue’s best selling shows offering an encore performance. Of the seventy-five performing groups in this year’s Fringe, the eleven international acts are from as far away as Israel, Japan, and the United Kingdom. The twenty-six national performers include groups from Washington, Kentucky, Maine, California, and New York. And of course patrons can also see performers from as near as Central Florida’s own backyard. The full schedule is currently live on www.orlandofringe.org.

The place to hang out between, before and after shows is the Green Lawn of Fabulousness. It features food and craft vendors, seating areas, an outdoor stage, and the Fringe beer and wine tent, sponsored by City Beverages, Barefoot Wines and Fuze Beverage. This is where patrons meet artists and discuss Fringe while the outdoor stage presents the best in Fringe’s free programming. Saturday evenings will feature the popular Fringe Poetry Smackdown, an open mic poetry slam.

Fringe will continue with its policy of no late admission for shows. Please be sure to arrive on time! In addition to show tickets, a Fringe button is required for admission (cost: $8), and can be purchased at the info desk or select locations throughout the festival.

Produced by Artistic Producing Director Beth Marshall, the Orlando International Fringe Theatre Festival is the longest running Fringe in the United States. It is a member of the Canadian Association of Fringe Festivals (CAFF) and follows the CAFF mandate to remain 100% unjuried, 100% uncensored, 100% accessible for artists and audiences alike, with 100% of ticket sales given back to the artists. Orlando Fringe is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, and receives generous funding from United Arts of Central Florida, Orange County Arts & Cultural Affairs, and the State of Florida Division of Cultural Affairs. Orlando Fringe’s Opening Night Gala and Fringe Preview Show are both Fuze Bright Events.

Orlando Fringe brings artists from diverse and disparate mediums together for twelve days for what many consider to be Central Florida’s premiere arts event. For more information, visit http://www.orlandofringe.org or call George Wallace, Director of Operations at 407-648-0077 ext. 2.

Comments are closed.