#FringeTO Review

Well, another year and another 150 shows and another fantastic Toronto Fringe Festival!

Congratulations to all the performers, crew, volunteers, patrons and everyone else who played a role, big or small, in this year’s festival!

This was the first Fringe in which I immersed myself in the action and though I didn’t see as many shows as I would have liked – entirely my fault – I know that next year I need to go in with a plan and not go home.

What I learned and “re-learned” from Fringe 2014 (in no particular order):

-Networking is a real and easy thing. Sometimes it amounts to a casual chat over projects being worked on or just the weather, but during those chats connections are made and if the proper follow up is performed new and lasting connections can be grown.

-You never know who you’ll run into. One of my friends from a writing class I took a few years ago directed a play at this year’s Fringe and I received the pleasure of an invite to the performance which led to the pleasure of enjoying a fantastic hour of entertainment.

-Seeing great art spurs on creating great art. I felt a bit of a creative hangover today. Though I didn’t have any role in the Fringe besides enjoying the few shows I saw, writing a couple reviews and sharing some libations at the Fringe Tent, I felt motivated to write and plan out my next writing projects. The only reason I am writing this post right now and not lying in bed watching The Newsroom – great show by the way – is because I feel the motivation to keep my blogging, writing and creative momentum going. This was one of those days where Resistance was strong, but I beat it by thinking about the performances I saw and also the blog prep I did last week. I have a lot of posts ready to go and I look forward to sharing them as the summer plays itself out. I owe that to the energy and motivation I received by surrounding myself with the Festival and its participants. So, a hearty thank you to those involved!

-“It” can be done. Whatever you want to do, you can do it, you just have to hope and believe that you can, but then actually go and DO it. Sounds wishy-washy, but it’s true. There were 150 shows performed this year and that means there were, at the very least, 150 people who did “it”. And that number is not even close to the actual amount of people who were involved in putting on these shows. From my knowledge of only two of the productions, each had at least 5 people directly involved with their production and performance. From writing, directing, producing, acting, stage managing, set design, and music and score composition hundreds of people invested their creative talents into the festival and thus, into the culture of Toronto. For lack of better phrasing, they did “it” and for some they did “it” more than once without any expectation of compensation beyond the opportunity to work and produce art for everyone to enjoy. If they can do “it”, then I can do “it” and so can you. We just have to want and hope and need, but most importantly, follow through. Instead of lying in bed watching blah, blah, blah, go and do “it”.

No doubt, there are more lessons that I learned from FringeTO 2014 and I’m sure that these things will come to the fore as time goes on. Once I synthesize something I find little nuggets that I didn’t even realize were there. But for now I will say congratulations again to everyone involved and I’m already looking forward to next year!

Check out these talented people and look out for their future projects:

The Slut crew:

Beer in a Glass Productions; Beer in a Glass Productions Facebook; Beer in a Glass Productions Twitter

Erin Thompson

Tracey Beltrano

Dahlia Katz; Dahlia Katz Twitter

Yehuda Fisher; Yehuda Fisher Twitter

Ayesha Mansur, Choreographer

Heather Lacey, Stage Manager

Rachel Ford, Production Designer

Robert Steven Wilkinson, Composer/Musical Director

The Baker’s Dozen crew:

Nicole Stamp; Nicole Stamp Twitter

Adam Proulx; Adam Proulx Twitter

Mike Petersen, Puppetry Consultant

Jennifer Walls, Producer

Jessica Smith, Stage Manager

Rob Denton, Composer

And my new blogger friend:

Justin Haigh


About jtkwriting

Writer living in Toronto. "Sneak out of your window darling, let's live like outlaws honey." View all posts by jtkwriting

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