July 30–August 7, 2021
3 Riverwood Close SE
Most recent festival
6 participating companies
$75,000+ returned to artists
Application and selection
$50 for Artist Managed Venue Performances
$30 for Digital Performances
Lottery, First-come, First-served
30 (under anticipated COVID restrictions for the summer)
Number of performances per show: 5 guaranteed performance time slots
Maximum ticket price: 15.00
Maximum show length: 75
2021 CALGARY FRINGE FESTIVAL
The 2021 year started off with the good news of approved vaccines in the battle of defeating COVID-19 worldwide, with the first stages of roll-out currently under circulation. Not without its setbacks on limited supplies and distributions, certainly, but vaccine productions and deliveries to our province are to ramp up considerably over the coming weeks and months ahead. It’s exciting to think that all eligible adults in Canada could have their first round of vaccinations completed by July 1! Until the vaccinations are completed and we’ve reached herd immunity, we all have to continue to do our part – observe public health and safety guidelines with social distancing, wearing masks, washing our hands frequently, gathering limits, and travel restrictions as part of our daily lives to help curb the affects of the pandemic and the impact on our fellow citizens. Many Fringes across the globe are looking at pairing down and/or revamping their offerings in 2021 in recognition of these facts, and the Calgary Fringe is no exception.
In discussing this with Calgary Fringe board and what our plans could be for the Calgary Fringe Festival in 2021, it came down to one simple question:
“What can we reasonably deliver on with almost 100% certainty in the summer of 2021 should the pandemic and any corresponding restrictions continue to exist at that time?”
Once we asked ourselves that question, the answers, though difficult to grasp and accept at first, became clear. Below is a point form summary:
BASIC OFFERING – we will be pairing down to ONE mainstage or Fringe Managed Venue (FMV) at Calgary Folk Fest’s Festival Hall for our annual Fringe Festival this year. Dates are Fri July 30 to Sat Aug 7, 2021. Local artists only for in-person presentations, with full COVID safety protocols and regulations carefully adhered to, as may be required at Festival time (ie. limited seating that allows for proper physical distancing, staggered patron arrivals and departures, cleaning and sanitization between shows). 3 Fringe artists. 7 guaranteed performances over the 9 days. Live streaming of the performances will also be made available to allow for increased audience participation.
Festival Hall will serve as our ‘Festival Hub’, where our main box office will operate from and where other cool activities will be planned outside of scheduled Fringe performance times. Such activities could include things like special one-off performances, in-house Watch Parties of our new web channel, or lounge services. Just because we’ll be at a reduced capacity for 2021 doesn’t mean we won’t have any fun … ‘cause we most certainly will! More details will be shared in late Spring / early Summer 2021.
Local artists who were not able to participate in the cancelled 2020 Calgary Fringe Festival and who were selected in the lottery draw as one of our FMV artists:
2021 FMV GENERAL ARTIST LOTTERY DRAW RESULTS:
Life Stages Theatre
2021 FMV IBPOC / EQUITY SEEKING ARTIST LOTTERY DRAW RESULTS:
Cloudsway Dance Theatre (UPDATE – online theatrical works only)
Kodie Rollan (UPDATE – deferred to 2022)
THE ADD-ON … LAWN CHAIR FRINGE! – there are plans currently in the works for an outdoor Artist Managed Venue (aka AMV) at Gopher Park in Inglewood that we are calling LAWN CHAIR FRINGE. More details of the outdoor set-up, shows, and scheduled performances to follow over the next few weeks.
THE DIGITAL COMPONENT … CALGARY FRINGE’S DIGITAL THEATRE PLAYHOUSE! – we will be presenting three different digital performance series as part of our Fringe Festival this year:
LIVESTREAM (of our FMV performances).
THEATRE ON DEMAND (for pre-recorded theatrical presentations and/or works). There is currently an open call for twenty artist submissions – 50% General Artist category and 50% IBPOC / Equity seeking Category. Lottery draw selection end of May. For more details and to apply, click here.
FRINGE HINDSIGHT 2020 (for any of our 2020 Calgary Fringe Theatre touring artists who opt in to participate).
LIVESTREAM content will be available for patron viewing at the start of each scheduled performance time during the run of the Fringe Festival, with the option of a Hold-Over pre-recording of one of the livestreamed performances being made available as part of the THEATRE ON DEMAND series after the Festival until Sat Aug 14.
THEATRE ON DEMAND and FRINGE HINDSIGHT 2020 will be available for patron viewing starting the Mon July 26 leading into the Festival, during the Festival itself, and one week after the Festival has completed, going offline Sat Aug 14.
Upon purchase of a viewing ticket or special THEATRE ON DEMAND/FRINGE HINDSIGHT 2020 All Access Pass, patrons will be emailed the content URL links and passwords to access each digital performance at the appropriate time. Tickets and the THEATRE ON DEMAND/FRINGE HINDSIGHT 2020 All Access Passes will go onsale on/by July 15.
NEW TICKET PRICING STRUCTURE FOR ALL FRINGE EVENTS – we have phased out SuperPasses and the mandatory Fringe Button and instead, are offering a Calgary Fringe Membership / Non-Membership ticketing pricing structure. Ticket prices will be $20 for non-members ($15 to the artist and $5 CFF ticketing surcharge) or $15 for FRINGER+ members ($12 to the artist and $3 CFF ticketing surcharge). FRINGER+ Membership price is $25 per annum.
FRINGER+ Members will receive:
A souvenir Fringe Button (may be collected from the main box office site during each Fringe Season Event).
Membership to the Calgary International Fringe Festival Society for the year.
Voting privileges at our 2021 AGM on June 9.
Early Bird access to all Calgary Fringe show event tickets.
Special Calgary Fringe ticket offerings.
Access to an Exclusive FRINGER+ Clubhouse at select venue sites and/or events.
Discounts at participating restaurants n’ stores, when available.
There may be special ticket prices offered for certain performances, like PWYC/PWYW (Pay What You Can – for those that can’t afford a full price ticket or Pay What You Want – for those that may want to pay more), Half Price tickets, and other artist-offered specials. THEATRE ON DEMAND/FRINGE HINDSIGHT 2020 All Access Passes will be sold for $190 for non-members ($180 divided equally between all participating Fringe artists in both digital series + $10 CFF ticketing surcharge) or $150 for FRINGER+ Members ($140 divided equally between all participating Fringe artists in both digital series + $10 CFF ticketing surcharge).
NO PAPER FRINGE GUIDES – there’s long been a call to decrease our carbon footprint on the environment and with COVID-19 health guidelines forcing everyone to go as paperless as possible, this makes the transition to going paperless even easier. Starting 2021, Fringe Guides will only be offered exclusively online.
CONTACTLESS BOX OFFICE – in 2019, 80% of our patrons purchased their tickets in advance online. Tickets were sent electronically, which could then be displayed on cell phones or printed off. The pandemic has further changed things, with many businesses not accepting cash and going ‘contactless’. We will continue to encourage everyone to book their tickets in advance online as much as possible. This will be particularly important for AMVs as many of them will not have onsite ticket selling services available. Our main box office will be conducting its services from the Calgary Folk Fest’s Festival Hall during Festival time. Hours of operation will be posted in late Spring/early Summer 2021.
INTRODUCING … FRINGE U!
In the Fall 2021, we will be introducing Fringe University, or FRINGE U, offering training to artists on how to become their own producers (aka self-producing artists). This 6 week course will be offered to the first round of emerging artists starting mid-September 2021, and will be guided and mentored all along the way by the Calgary Fringe Executive Director /Producer, Michele Gallant, and guest teachers.
Upon completion of the course, the graduates will be given the opportunity to put into practice what they’ve learned and can present their show at one of our FRINGE U Showcase Weekends, a 4-day special event (Thurs-Sun) exclusively for FRINGE U graduate students. Graduate FRINGE U students are given the opportunity to perform one show each day of their Showcase Weekend. Audiences, as Co-Creators of the art being presented on stage, and industry panelists will be invited to participate in an open Q&A dialogue at the end of each performance with the FRINGE U graduates, with the goal of providing further critique and feedback to assist the artists in further workshopping and development of their work. All shows would also be live streamed and pre-recorded, with a copy of the recording given to the FRINGE U graduates for personal use (eg. future online presentations and promo reels). The first FRINGE U Showcase Weekend will take place March 24 to March 27, 2022 at Festival Hall.
In a regular year, FRINGE U will take place three times a year (mid-Jan to end of Feb, mid-April to end of May, mid-Sept to end of Oct). FRINGE U will be offered as a free course to any interested artists.
The FRINGE U Showcase Weekends will take place three times a year as well (mid-March, August (during our Calgary Fringe Festival), early December). FRINGE U Showcase Weekends are part of the students’ scholarship, with venue, full tech and box office/Front of House support provided by the Calgary Fringe, with all ticket sales going right back to the artists.
INCLUSIVITY AND EQUALITY – ADDRESSING SYSTEMIC RACISM
The Calgary Fringe highly values equity, diversity, inclusion, and accessibility. We are committed to meaningful change and are currently working on ways to address the equity imbalance within our organization and within our city. One such step is in the creation of the IBPOC / Equity-Seeking Artist Category in our 2021 Calgary Fringe Festival as a start.
We continue to listen, to learn, and to grow – and continually renew our commitment to building a better, more equitable system that actively combats racism.
KEEP CHECKING BACK HERE REGULARLY FOR THE LATEST UPDATES!!!
Thank you for your continued support in these difficult times. Until that happy day when we can all congregate together once more, please continue to stay safe and be well. We know it’s been a long haul, and we’re sure you’re as tired of the pandemic as we are and dearly want things to return to normal. But we’re not out of it yet. Please take care of yourselves and of each other. Follow all health and safety guidelines. Be kind to your fellow humans. Be patient and understanding – everyone is trying their best in these difficult times, and we can sometimes lose sight of that because we ourselves are feeling stressed and missing being with our loved ones too. It’s HARD! We get it. Know that you are all loved. Hang in there! We’ll make it through this thing yet!
– Much hugs from the Calgary Fringe Team
ANY QUESTIONS? WANT MORE INFORMATION? Contact below:
Michele Gallant, Executive Director & Producer
More information can also be found on our website at www.calgaryfringe.ca