The Minnesota Fringe Festival gets underway tomorrow, and while most of the performances are home-grown, there are 27 shows coming to town as part of what insiders affectionately call the “Fringe circuit.” In other words, performers travel from festival to festival, across the country, and sometimes across the globe, keeping their show alive as long as possible.
MPR’s Euan Kerr interviewed a couple of performers for whom the experience has been life-changing:
Courtney McLean traveled the circuit for a couple of years with her one-woman show. The fringe travelers find each other and trade tips on the best places to stay and tricks of the fringe trade, McLean said.
“You kind of have this sense of ‘Oh we don’t belong,’ and so you glom on to each other,” she said. “And you meet people from all over the world. It’s so cool.”
And that’s how she learned about other fringes.
“I have friends that have been to the New Zealand Fringe, I have friends that do the Canadian circuit all the time. People who have been to Edinburgh, the Amsterdam Fringe…”
The Fringe circuit changed MacLean’s life. She upped stakes and moved to Minneapolis from New York after performing here twice.