Theater: a universal constant through most of human history. From morality plays to kabuki, and William Shakespeare to Tennessee Williams, almost all cultures have some form of theater.
We have several long-standing theater festivals in Utah, but one close to home is the “Fringe Festival.” Fringe Fest is a 10-day showcase of new upcoming artists and performers, as well as adaptations of older works by several theater companies. And don’t think that this is just scenes and monologues — there is going to be dance troupes, comedians, musicians, bands and more.
Starting on August 2 with the “Opening Night Party,” many of the artists and performers will present snippets of their shows. Unlike past Fringe Fests, there will be several food trucks, a beer garden and live music this year, and these are free to the public at the Gateway. Thanks to the courtesy of Gateway, Fringe also has many more areas open for artists to perform. Also, since Gateway is in a Trax “Free Fare Zone,” people have easy access to get to the shows.
Just to be clear, if you have been to Fringe Fest before, it is no longer at Westminster College. It will now take place at The Gateway. The Trax will drop you off right in front of Fringe Fest, but there are parking garages sprinkled throughout the area for those who choose to drive.
From August 2nd to August 12th, Fringe Fest will have shows going on all afternoon and into the night, some as ending as late as 11 pm. Now before you jump in and start going to shows, thinking it’ll be like an opening night party, you will need to buy tickets to the festival.
First, and this is a big one, you need to buy a “Fringe tattoo,” which costs five dollars. This will get you into the festival itself, but not into the shows — nevertheless, many local stores in the Sugarhouse area will give you discounts on food and other items by wearing it.
Now, Ticket prices:
One ticket is 10 dollars, three tickets are 25 dollars and, if you really want to get into it, you can get 10 tickets for only $70.
Depending on how often you go to shows, this may feel like a lot of money, especially if you go in groups and need to pay for everyone’s tickets. But the festival is set up to directly give the money to the artists. The $5 you pay for the tattoo goes to Fringe Fest, location, furnishings and etc. but anything else you spend on tickets goes right to the performers.
This is a terrific capstone event to visit before school comes back in session on the 20th. Go out in this weather, hoping that it cools down to something livable, and see something that will make you laugh. Or cry. Or both — I don’t know what you like.