Posts tagged ‘Fringe theatre’

May 24, 2011

More Than Just a Festival

Something I haven’t mentioned on my blog is my involvement in the Toronto Fringe as a member of their Board of Directors. I am very pleased and proud to be part of this organization, so thought I’d give them a little love.

To start, the Toronto Fringe has a great new logo. Now, some organizations confuse logo with brand, which drives me crazy. Not the Toronto Fringe. They’ve managed to come up with a new logo that encompasses everything they do, and still maintain yet expand their brand. Nicely done, folks.

In the past few years, the Toronto Fringehas expanded far beyond ten days in July. Although the Summer Festival remains the flagship of the organization, it’s expanded beyond anyone’s wildest dreams, A few years ago, then-Producer Bridget Macintosh created the Next Stage Theatre Festival – which for all intents and purposes should not have succeeded – a theatre festival in January, just after Christmas when everyone is broke, and who wants to sit in a beer tent in the winter? Plenty of folks, apparently, as the Festival was a hit from the get-go, with the 2011 Fest selling over 6,000 tickets and returning $45,000 to the participants. and incidentally it’s time to apply for the 2012 Next Stage Festival.

So now there are two festivals. What else?

Well, the 10 X 10 X10 outreach initiative for starters. 10x10x10 engages youth throughout the GTA at three levels, helping to develop a new generation of Fringe supporters and artist-contributors, while also engaging them more broadly with the arts in our city. Click up there to find out more.

Most recently, and I think possibly most exciting is the announcement of the new Fringe Creation Lab. Located at the Centre for Social Innovation Annex, it features over 3,000 square feet of creation space and a quickly growing list of resources that will accommodate rehearsals, workshops, readings, seminars and intimate special events for Toronto’s theatre & dance community. The Fringe Creation Lab stems from the Fringe Festival’s founding values of access to creative opportunity.

I could go on and tell you about the Play Contests, the Evolution Fund, the Research Chair, the OTICs (Ticketing), the Creators’ Reserve, the FringeKids! Poster Contest and the Space List , but since it’s all available on their website I’ll let you look. Just so you know, registration for the 24 hour playwriting contest is now open.

The Toronto Fringe is one of my favourite things about Toronto – year round, not just two weeks in July. I strongly recommend you get involved, whether it’s volunteering, writing plays, designing a poster or seeing shows. It’s something that makes our city great. You can find them on Facebook or follow them on Twitter.

Beautiful day! Get out there!

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