Metro Weekly

Fun with Fringe: 41 Capital Fringe Productions Celebrate This Year’s Festival

A curated selection of what you can expect from some of this year’s Fringe shows, as 41 productions stood before our cameras

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The uprising started in 1947, in Edinburgh, Scotland.

“The locals were not allowed to participate in a big, international arts festival,” says Julianne Brienza. “So they did shows wherever they could — alleyways, churches, bars. A journalist wrote in a newspaper that ‘The big international festival was getting fringed.'”

And an arts event was born.

Actually, event is a bit of an understatement. With more than 50,000 performances of 3,314 shows in 313 venues in 2015, the Edinburgh Festival Fringe is, without question, the world’s largest arts showcase. Over its 70 years, it’s helped launch the careers of such luminaries as Craig Ferguson, Rowan Atkinson, Tom Stoppard and Eddie Izzard. Even Derek Jacobi and Emma Thompson have participated in Fringe productions. It wasn’t long before offshoots emerged — Brienza estimates there are about 400 various festivals internationally — including, in 2006, one in Washington, D.C.

“I moved here from Philadelphia in December of 2003,” the 41-year-old Brienza recalls. “I didn’t really understand the voice of theater in D.C. outside of being highly Shakespeare. You’ve got a lot of Shakespeare going on here.”
Brienza had worked with Philly Fringe, and felt the idea of a similarly-styled festival would suit D.C. Along with six other founding members, she launched Capital Fringe, which boasted an impressive 96 productions in its first year alone. The festival grew annually to the point that, in February 2015, Fringe was able to purchase a building in Trinidad, at 1358 Florida Avenue NE. They christened their new home — a relaxed, funky building, featuring a black box theater and a spacious outdoor area for hanging out — the Logan Fringe Arts Space.

This year’s Capital Fringe, which runs through July 31, boasts 117 main shows and various side offerings. The productions aren’t curated and available slots are filled on a first-come, first-served basis. The non-profit Capital Fringe provides the artists support and, if needed, advice on how to best mount their productions.

“Let’s be honest, some of the shows are absolutely horrible,” says Brienza, conceding that part of the joy of Fringe is one never quite knows what one is getting.

“You look at our guide to the shows and are like, ‘What is this stuff?'” she says. “But there are different types of people in the world. If you’re really specific and only like certain things, you should totally use the website and the guide and find the type of show that you want to see. If you’re someone that just really wants to see what the festival is about, your best bet is to come down to the Logan space and just hang out. There’s always people here. A lot of the artists pitch their shows and will come up and talk to you. You might be like, ‘You know, they seem interesting, I want to check out their show.’ Or, ‘Wow, that person seems like a mess. I bet their show’s not that great.'”

In the gallery below, we offer a (curated) selection of what you can expect from some of the Fringe shows, as 41 of this year’s productions stood before our cameras during an afternoon photo shoot last Saturday in the Logan’s Trinidad Theatre.

One thing you’ll find at Fringe (as in our photos) is diversity — plenty of it, as many of the productions, if not explicitly LGBT-themed, contain some form of LGBT content. And certainly, a sizeable percentage of the actors, directors, and writers involved with Fringe productions identify as LGBT.

Says Brienza, “The whole festival is about people actually being human beings, and enjoying other human beings.”

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Forty-one Capital Fringe productions participated in our photo shoot on Saturday, July 2. Those with LGBT content are denoted with a rainbow. For a complete list of all 117 Capital Fringe shows, as well as show times, descriptions, and addresses of participating venues, visit capitalfringe.org.

75 Lezbos, 2 Trannies, 1 Pannie, Me & Me Too! rainbow icon

Drama, 60 min.
DCAC – 7/8, 7/10
Gallery O on H
7/14, 7/15, 7/21, 7/23

...and a Ghost Girl

…and a Ghost Girl

…and a Ghost Grrl rainbow icon

Comedy, 85 min.
Logan: Trinidad
7/7, 7/10, 7/13, 7/15, 7/17

A Breakup is Swift rainbow icon

Drama, 50 min.
MLK Library
7/9, 7/12, 7/19, 7/23, 7/24

A Midsummer’s Burlesque Dream rainbow icon

Dance, 75 min.
Logan: Trinidad
7/9, 7/10, 7/15, 7/21, 7/23

A Romp Around Uranus with Special Agent Galactica rainbow icon

Musical, 95 min.
Logan: Upstairs
7/9, 7/13, 7/17, 7/19, 7/24

Aliens, Nazis and Angels rainbow icon

Comedy, 60 min.
The Argonaut
7/9, 7/10, 7/16, 7/17, 7/22, 7/23

Am I There Yet?

Dance, 50 min.
Gallaudet: Elstad
7/8, 7/12, 7/16, 7/17, 7/22, 7/24

Before the Lights Go Up

Comedy, 55 min.
Logan: Upstairs
7/7, 7/10, 7/17, 7/20, 7/23

BRYCE: Hydrogen Blonde rainbow icon

Musical, 60 min.
Logan: Trinidad
7/8, 7/14, 7/17, 7/22, 7/24

Cake!

Cake!

Cake! rainbow icon

Drama, 60 min.
Gallaudet: Elstad
7/8, 7/10, 7/16, 7/19, 7/24

Confederates rainbow icon

Drama, 75 min.
Logan: Upstairs
7/9, 7/12, 7/14, 7/22, 7/24

Coping rainbow icon

Drama, 80 min.
Flashpoint: Mead
7/8, 7/9, 7/16, 7/17, 7/20, 7/23

Cracked

Drama, 70 min.
Logan: Upstairs
7/9, 7/14, 7/16, 7/22, 7/24

Dial R for Robot rainbow icon

Musical, 75 min.
Atlas: Sprenger
7/9, 7/15, 7/16, 7/19, 7/23

Different, Damaged, Damned

Drama, 50 min.
MLK Library
7/7, 7/10, 7/16, 7/19, 7/23

Free Range

Free Range

Free Range

Comedy, 60 min.
Logan: Upstairs
7/8, 7/10, 7/17, 7/20, 7/23

GLACIER: A Climate Change Ballet

Dance, 45 min.
Atlas: Lang
7/7, 7/9, 7/10, 7/11, 7/16, 7/17

Good Kids

Drama, 90 min.
Atlas: Lab II
7/9, 7/14, 7/16, 7/22, 7/23

Hello|Brother rainbow icon

Drama, 80 min.
Gallaudet: Eastman Studio
7/7, 7/10, 7/16, 7/20, 7/23

How to Be the Perfect Wingwoman

Musical, 90 min.
Tropicalia Lounge
7/9, 7/14, 7/16

How to Give Birth to a Rabbit

Musical, 45 min.
Atlas: Sprenger
7/9, 7/14, 7/16, 7/22, 7/24

Hunt rainbow icon

Drama, 60 min.
Flashpoint: Mead
7/7, 7/13, 7/16, 7/22, 7/24

In a Day of Dreary

In a Day of Dreary

In a Day of Dreary

Drama, 40 min.
Atlas: Sprenger
7/15, 7/15, 7/16, 7/22, 7/24

It Will All Make Sense in the Morning

Drama, 60 min.
Logan: Trinidad
7/8, 7/14, 7/17, 7/21, 7/22, 7/24

Love in Ruins

Drama, 75 min.
Logan: Upstairs
7/9, 7/13, 7/17, 7/21, 7/23

Normal/Magic rainbow icon

Comedy, 70 min.
MLK Library
7/9, 7/13, 7/17, 7/19, 7/23

One Mutual Happiness rainbow icon

Drama, 80 min.
Flashpoint: Mead
7/9, 7/14, 7/16, 7/17, 7/19, 7/23

Over Her Dead Body

Musical, 80 min.
Logan: Trinidad
7/9, 7/15, 7/16, 7/19, 7/23

Power! Stokely Carmichael

Drama, 75 min.
Logan: Trinidad
7/9, 7/12, 7/16, 7/20, 7/23

Romanov rainbow icon

Musical, 60 min.
Flashpoint: Mead
7/9, 7/12, 7/16, 7/22, 7/23, 7/24

SuperNOVA

Musical, 80 min.
Gallaudet: Elstad
7/7, 7/10, 7/13, 7/16, 7/22, 7/24

Ten Principles )'(

Ten Principles )'(

Ten Principles )'(

Drama, 90 min.
The Argonaut
7/9, 7/10, 7/16, 7/22, 7/23, 7/24

Timon 2016

Drama, 90 min.
Gallaudet: Elstad
7/9, 7/12, 7/15, 7/17, 7/19, 7/23

The DOMA Diaries rainbow icon

Drama, 85 min.
Flashpoint: Mead
7/7, 7/10, 7/15, 7/21, 7/23

The House of Yes

Comedy, 90 min.
Atlas: Lab II
7/9, 7/10, 7/15, 7/17, 7/23

The Missing Peace

Musical, 90 min.
Logan: Trinidad
7/9, 7/13, 7/16, 7/19, 7/23

The Real World: Kabul rainbow icon

Comedy, 95 min.
Atlas: Lab II
7/7, 7/12, 7/16, 7/20, 7/22

The Root of All Knowledge

Dance, 65 min.
Atlas, Lab II
7/9, 7/13, 7/17, 7/22, 7/23

The Tragedy of Mario and Juliet rainbow icon

Comedy, 110 min.
Atlas: Lab II
7/7, 7/12, 7/16, 7/19, 7/23

The Trial of Mrs. Surratt

The Trial of Mrs. Surratt

The Trial of Mrs. Surratt rainbow icon

Dance, 105 min.
Atlas: Sprenger
7/8, 7/12, 7/17, 7/20, 7/23

Yes, And…

Comedy, 50 min.
MLK Library
7/14, 7/17, 7/20, 7/21, 7/24

The 2016 Capital Fringe Festival runs through July 31. Be sure to pay a visit to the Logan Fringe Arts Space at 1358 Florida Ave. NE. To purchase tickets or passes, visit capitalfringe.org or call 866-811-4111.

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Randy Shulman is Metro Weekly's Publisher and Editor-in-Chief. He can be reached at rshulman@metroweekly.com.