For 17 days this September the city will be awash in performance art with over 1,000 performances by artists from near and far in venues that range from living rooms to The Merriam Theater. This is the glory of the Fringe Festival, held September 3-19.
Shows are divided into two categories: Curated (selected by the Fringe Arts staff) and Neighborhood (no vetting process).
Don’t know where to get started with the festival? Here are four shows not to miss:
SWAMP IS ON (Curated): Hometown indie theater darlings Pig Iron team up with hometown indie music darlings Dr. Dog for a musical theater experiment at Union Transfer unlike anything you’ll find on Broadway. You can get a sense of this “experiment and transmission,” which will follow with a full Dr. Dog concert, from this preview video.
The Extra People (Curated): The UK’s Ant Hampton returns to the festival this year with an inventive and interactive world premiere performance. Ticket holders will take turns as both audience member and performer at the Merriam Theater guided only by the headphones and flashlight provided to them when they arrive.
901 Nowhere Street (Neighborhood): Noir is in and peppering this year’s festival. Get your fix with the 100% dame cast of this hardboiled Sam Tower production at Power Plant Productions. There’s a novelist, a publisher and a private eye and allegedly they are all heroines in this original story.
It’s So Learning (Neighborhood): Take a comedic turn with the Berserker Residents in this interactive and dark piece about America’s floundering schools at the Ruba Club. They suggest you come prepared for anything, so if audience participation scares you, then this might not be the show for you.
Hungry for more? Use this handy map to find out if any shows are happening near you.
Also, check out Scratch Night each Monday until the festival to preview some neighborhood shows.