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A Tinge of Fringe

Preview of Upcoming Fringe Fest, Nov. 20-24



New Orleans Fringe Festival is gearing up for its eighth run, beginning tomorrow, November 20, and running through the 24 th at 40 different venues across New Orleans. Coordinators and performers gathered Tuesday morning at the Marigny Opera House (725 St. Ferdinand) to give early birds a taste of what’s to come. 

 

This year's Fringe is comprised of 76 shows, with troupes and solo performers coming from all over the country, with a few international acts. The Marigny Opera House is one of over 40 venues for this year's Fringe. 

 

Childrens' Afro-Brazilian dance and drumming troupe Negras Quilombolas represents Fringe's kid-friendly shows, with circus performer Krin Haglund displaying the whacky, 14+ performances. Gayland, a play that imagines a world of homonormativity and heterophobia, has a more adult sense of humor and tone. 

 

Negras Quilombolas is a partnership between Young Audiences and their teaching artists, Ja’Nese Brooks-Galethe and Marco Peeter.  

 

Brooks-Galathe says that the kids' talent makes the program stand out among extra-curricular programs. 

 

“Basically arts and education exposes the kids to history, science, even down to mathematics and choreography, and learning the drums,” says Brooks-Galathe. 

 

“They’re not just good because they’re my kids. They’re just good.” Negras Quilombolas will also be performing at this weekend's "Family Fringe" before their performances in the Den of Muses. 

 

Performer Krin Hagland made an impression with her teaser, as the contortionist managed to make a glass of “wine” (grape juice) spin 360 degrees without losing a drop. After her gravity defying feat, the former circus performer used her small, musclebound frame to bring the glass to her lips with her toes, after using her torso as a table, no less.

 

The Montreal-based performer says that she decided to apply for N.O. Fringe Fest after hearing about it from a friend. Her show, The Rendez-Vous is a one-woman show that blends aerial, trapeze, and Cyr wheel.

 

“I’m the first woman to learn this apparatus,” Haglund says. “It’s like a giant hula hoop.”     

 

Haglund tells NoDef that the audience can expect a show that is as unpredictable as her limbs.

 

“The original inspiration for the show is that I had a narcoleptic ex-boyfriend who had a sleep disorder and was 17 hours late for a date. That really happened to me” says Haglund. “The show is a really absurdist reimagining of this sort of situation. It’s not linear, but I use circus to kind of tell this story kind of how you deal with disappointment and how you become really okay with it."

 

Fringe's Executive Director Kristen Evans says that the Fest is almost entirely self-sufficient, with 80 percent of their revenue coming from earned income. Last year, the festival attracted a total of 14,000 attendees. 

 

“We don’t rely a whole lot on grant funding, although we’re grateful for that funding, we think it’s really important to make sure you can be as self sustaining as possible,” says Evans. “When we calculate the in-kind effort, there’s a metric, it’s $19 per hour for volunteer hours. (That's) $130,000 in volunteer time. It’s huge.”

 

Evans recommends that Fringe virgins dive in head first. “Grab a program, go through, find out what’s interesting to you, get a pass and plunge right in,” says Evans. “That’s the idea is emersion, full emersion.”

 

Festers can buy tickets at the door or the Central Box Office. Each show is $8, and six-play passes are only $40. Purchase tickets and check out the program here. 

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Contributors

Renard Boissiere, Evan Z.E. Hammond, Naimonu James, Wilson Koewing, J.A. Lloyd, Nina Luckman, Dead Huey Long, Alexis Manrodt, Joseph Santiago, Andrew Smith, Cynthia Via, Austin Yde

Photographers


Art Director

Michael Weber, B.A.

Editor


Listings Editor

Linzi Falk

Editor Emeritus

Alexis Manrodt


B. E. Mintz


Stephen Babcock

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