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The Third Time’s the Charm.

In 2012, over 32,000 attended the first-ever First Niagara Rochester Fringe Festival and enjoyed more than 120 productions over 5 days in 20 venues in and around downtown Rochester. In 2013, the Fringe grew to 360 performances in 28 venues over 10 days and attracted over 50,000 people from all 50 states and 5 countries, becoming the largest multi-arts festival in New York State. Join us from September 18 - 27 for a spectacular line-up of 380 shows at 28 venues. Tickets to all shows are on sale now. See you there!

For the Uninitiated.

In case you missed the first (or second) Fringe, allow us to enlighten you. The Fringe is an all-out, no-holds-barred, multi-disciplinary visual and performing arts festival. The Fringe features international, national and local artists. It showcases theater, comedy, visual arts, family entertainment, music, dance, physical theatre, street theatre, musical theatre, opera, poetry, literature and experiences that have yet to even be imagined!

The Fringe History.

The Fringe is a not-for-profit corporation pioneered by several of Rochester’s cultural institutions: Geva Theatre Center, George Eastman House and Garth Fagan Dance, as well as emerging groups such as PUSH Physical Theatre and Method Machine. Our Board has expanded to include the Rochester Downtown Development Corporation, University of Rochester, Eastman School of Music, RIT, Boylan Code, and Mengel Metzger Barr. Numerous colleges, government representatives and philanthropic organizations have joined to support the festival.

What is a Fringe?

In 1947, eight theatre groups crashed the newly established and curated Edinburgh International Festival. Uninvited and unwelcome, the groups performed anyway at venues they arranged themselves. The following year, Scottish journalist Robert Kemp coined the term “fringe festival” to describe these non-juried shows. The Edinburgh Fringe is now “the largest show on earth,” as it is nicknamed. The 2011 festival saw 41,689 performances of 2,542 shows in 258 venues and lasted the entire month of August. It grosses over $100 million annually for the Scottish economy. Venues run the gamut from proper theatres to a public restroom. Today, there are over 200 fringe festivals worldwide, with around 50 occurring in the US.