Robin Gillette to step down from MN Fringe Festival

Robin Gillette, Executive Director of the Minnesota Fringe Festival, is ready to try something new.

The red-headed leader of the independent theater festival is stepping down after marking its 20th anniversary.

In a phone conversation this afternoon Gillette explained that she wants to make the break while the Festival is in good health.

Gillette took the helm of the Fringe in 2006; under her tenure attendance has increased 23% and the payout from box office returns to artists has increased 34%. The festival has also reached out to performers around the state, and worked to promote Midwestern shows to the international fringe scene.

Gillette says she’s proudest of the opportunities that Fringe has provided.

“For artists, and folks who wouldn’t define themselves as artists but had something they wanted to say or do in a theatrical format, to get on a stage and see what they’ve got. For audiences, who’ve had a chance to be active participants in the creation of new work with their willingness to take a risk on new materials and new faces. For my staff – there aren’t words to express how proud I am of the collaborative structure that the six of us year-round folks have built, and the professional development that I’ve been privileged to watch in each of them over the years.”

The 2013 Minnesota Fringe Festival runs August 1 – 11. In the meantime, the board is forming a search committee to identify Gillette’s successor.