2015 Vancouver Fringe Festival Preview, Coming Sept 10-20

Image sourced from vancouverfringe.com

The Wonderheads, performing at the Fringe Opening Night Party on Sept. 8. Image sourced from vancouverfringe.com

Which Vancouver theatre festival highlights dating disasters, meth labs, sea-monkeys, sexy clowns, circuses, a dead grandma and more?

The Vancouver Fringe Festival, of course. Fringe is back for its 21st annual instalment, Sept. 10-Sept. 20, and packed with more weirdness, brilliance and unfettered creativity than ever. This year’s festival features more than 100 different acts, many literally drawn from a hat, performed over the course of 11 days on Granville Island. More than 40,000 theatregoers are expected to turn out for the unique event, which gives all types of artists – from novices to veterans – a chance to try out groundbreaking new works.

Shows are performed in theatres throughout Granville Island, as well as in much less conventional “site-specific” locations. (In past years, these sites have included a boat, a tree, a fire escape and the back of a bicycle.) In addition, this year’s fringe will feature some unique “augmented-reality theatre” involving the use of mobile devices like smartphones. When aimed at the right location on Granville Island, the devices will automatically play unique original films centred on the theme of “risk.”

Image sourced from vancouverfringe.com

Image sourced from vancouverfringe.com

The performances themselves are complemented by nightly parties and live music at the Barefoot Wine & Bubbly Stage, lending Fringe an especially festive atmosphere. Meanwhile, a variety of workshops give audience members an opportunity to go behind the scenes and learn about the craft of storytelling.

Image sourced from vancouverfringe.com

Image sourced from vancouverfringe.com

The Fringe Program Guide offers a comprehensive rundown of all 108 wildly different shows at this year’s festival. Hotly anticipated productions include Baker’s Dozen: 12 Angry Puppets, which earned best solo production honours at the Montreal Fringe and offers a unique look at the justice system through the eyes of 12 puppets. My First Sony, a family drama, profiles a 10-year-old who is obsessed with documenting her own family, including its heartrending disintegration. Spilling Family Secrets sees longtime Fringe performer Susan Freedman sharing her parents’ old love letters before a live audience. Meanwhile, Kiss Around Pass Around shines a spotlight on a unique blend of anime and circus clowning traditions.

Tickets to Fringe shows are $14 and can be purchased at vancouverfringe.com or
at the Fringe Box Office, located at 1398 Cartwright Street on Granville Island.

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