Thursday, January 21, 2010

Your Fringe Staff: JACK NOVAK

Hey guys, I'm Jack. I'm the Youth Programming Coordinator for the Chicago Fringe Festival. That means I'm making sure that young people have a place at Fringe--as performers, interns, and audience members. I am working to bring in groups of young performers from schools, as well as other organizations and programs that focus on giving young people a chance to engage in the performing arts. I'm also coordinating the beginnings of an intern program with high-school age youth interested in getting involved behind the scenes (any and all interested young people reading this now are encouraged to contact me!).

Fringe presents an extremely exciting opportunity for all artists to create and share their work, while engaging in a community of similarly free-thinking creative minds. What a great place it is, then, for emerging artists, especially! I look forward to having young people come together at Fringe from all over Chicago to build the artistic community of the next generation, and to discover new perspectives on careers in the arts.

We are, right now, reaching out to bring in applications to perform. We are also beginning to look into setting up workshops and panels to center around a general theme, which will take place in the days leading up and during the festival. There are a lot of exciting ideas in the works, and we hope that youth programming will continue to grow with the Fringe over the coming years.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010


In response to the devastating earthquake in Haiti last Tuesday, The League of Chicago Theatres has enlisted the support of the over 200 theatres in Chicago to raise funds for the people of Haiti. You have always been so generous to support our organization - now you have the chance to support over 3 million people in need of something as basic as clean water. Please click here and give as generously as you can to the Red Cross.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

New Interview with Mikayla & Vinnie on Midwest Media Now

Click here to listen to a podcast interview with Fringe staffers Mikayla and Vinnie on the Midwest Media Now podcast. Fun topics covered: marketing, the appeal of fringe, enthusiasm and the coining of the term "Open Source Theatre."

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Your Fringe Staff: JESSICA LANDIS

Hi, I'm Jessica! I'm the Travelers' Coordinator and Archivist for the Fringe. What that means is I talk to a lot of people and use a lot of exclamation points! Also I get to say "yes" a lot and "no" very infrequently, and I like that. As Archivist I keep track of all the wonderful things people are saying about the Fringe; which is awesome. As Travelers' Coordinator I'll be helping to find housing, refreshments and good times for all of our travelin' artists from different lands.

One of the most exciting things about working with this Fringe Festival is the aspect of our vision which involves getting all these different viewpoints together in one space, and mixing them about. I'm hoping to hear lots of people yell, "I had no idea I could do that!" in 2010- and then see them go do it!

At the beginning of this year, I'll be taking some trips down to Pilsen to get some information about the area for those who are traveling from far away (even if it is only as far away as Wrigleyville!) If you have any places you love, definitely let me know!

As Archivist I am also collecting a list of photographers and videographers for our crack team of archive-material-creators. If you or someone you know just caved and bought that Holga at Urban Outfitters, send me an email! And if you laughed at that reference, you should send me an email anyway. :)

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Midwest Circuit Winners!

56 production companies applied for the first Midwest Fringe Cirucit lottery. Each lucky company drawn is guaranteed spots in the Kansas City, Minnesota, Indianapolis and Chicago festivals.

The winners are:

Timothy Mooney Repertory Theatre, "TBD"
Skinny Dipping, "Skinny Dipping-Not Your Mama's One Woman Show"
Swanderwoman Productions, "Driving the Body Back"
Undeclared, "Grind: The Musical"
The waiting list is:

The Adventures of Les Kurkendaal, "Christmas in Bakersfield & The Gayer Show"
Billy Willy, "The Billy Willy Show"
Amanda Rountree, "The Good, the Bad, and the Monkey"
Nicole Kearney Productions, "And Ya Don't Stop, A Hip Hop Parable"
Thanks to all applicants!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Application Promo Video from the Crash Pad Puppets!

Our friends at Crash Pad created this heartfelt "Ode to Chicago" themed promo video encouraging applications for our fest. Check it out!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

The Midwest Circuit Lottery is Friday!

Here is the lovely press release out of our fabulous Big Sister Fringe, Minneapolis. Did you know you can get to Minneapolis from Chicago for like, $7 on the MegaBus? You should really go sometime.

Four U.S. fringe festivals—Minnesota, Indianapolis, Chicago and Kansas City—are gearing up to select artists to participate in a tour of this summer’s festivals.

The first Midwest Fringe circuit lottery is Fri., Jan. 8 starting at 3 p.m. Central. In total, 57 applications were received, some from as far afield as Great Britain and Israel.

Because of the lottery’s unanticipated popularity, the participating festivals increased the number of production slots drawn from two to four. The lottery will be streamed live at; results will be posted immediately.

Producers from the Indianapolis, Chicago and Kansas City fringes are traveling to Minneapolis-St. Paul for the lottery. Minnesota Fringe is hosting a special happy hour from 5-7 p.m. on Sat., Jan. 9 at Bedlam Theatre (1501 6th St. S., Minneapolis) for any artists and Fringe fans to come chat about other cities’ festivals.

Anyone interested in applying to these festivals is encouraged to attend an informal Q-and-A session on Sat., Jan. 9, 1-3 p.m., at St. Paul Central Library (90 W. 4th St., St. Paul).

The circuit kicks off July 25-Aug. 1 in Kansas City and ends at Chicago Fringe’s inaugural festival, Sept. 1-5. Minnesota Fringe runs Aug. 5-15 and Indianapolis takes place Aug. 19-29.

Minnesota Fringe is accepting applications for its general lottery until Fri., Jan. 29 at 5 p.m. Central. Applications are available at; there is a nonrefundable $25 application fee. Minnesota’s public lottery—in some respects a spectacle unto itself—is held Wed., Feb. 17 at 7 p.m.