Friday, July 25, 2008

Fringin' and dancin'

Minneapolis, Minnesota

If you have not submitted your advertising banner to the website of the Minnesota Fringe Festival by now, you are out of luck. It is one of the lowest cost deals in town and, between now and mid-August, the Fringe's will be one of the top five most active websites in Minnesota!

The festival runs 11 days, July 31 - Aug. 10, at numerous venues in the Uptown, West Bank, Northeast, and North Loop neighborhoods of Minneapolis. At least 1,000 artists will present more than 800 performances of 156 different shows, aided by 400 volunteers.

As a sassy teenager of 15, the Fringe has outgrown the pangs of its 1993 birth, delivered with a loan from the Cedar Riverside Business Association. It now is the Midwest's largest performing arts festival, and the largest nonjuried and uncensored Fringe in the U.S.

As my friend, John Munger, noted on his blog, Going Through the Movements, the Fringe "offers more dance in 11 days than any part of the [Twin Cities] dance community offers at any other time of the year." He has the statistics to prove it. I intend to see at least three of this year's dance offerings.

Live Action Set is creating some of the freshest and most engaging work in town these days. Its show, Deviants, will play at The Soap Factory, with a cast including Noah Bremer, Megan Odell, Robert Rosen, Galen Treuer, and Vanessa Voskuil. These are the folks who brought us the 2005 Fringe hit Please Don't Blow Up Mr. Boban.

Last year, Penelope Freeh presented one of the strongest shows in the Fringe. This year's offering is small aïda, a two-woman show for herself and Stephanie Fellner, to be performed at Theatre de la Jeune Lune.

DRP Dance will make its third Fringe appearance with Modern Muses at the Southern Theater. It features four women performing choreography by Danielle Robinson-Prater.

The maximum ticket price for any Fringe show is $12, plus a one-time button purchase for $3. A complete schedule for the festival is at

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