Sand kicked in the eyes on the beach, remember that? You see, I was 6’ 2” and weighed only 110 pounds through high school. It seemed, or at least I believed back then, that I also thought differently than everyone else. Nothing seemed to me as obvious and logical as it seemed to be everyone else.
I spent my time with the crowd that hung-out around the edges of the in-group. Some called us nerds. I now understand it as being part of the Fringe Festival of Life.
As I grew older, put on a few pounds, I still marched to a different drummer. I got married when I was 21 and after graduating law school in Austin, Texas, instead of taking that “golden train” down to Houston to work in a big law firms to make gobs of money, I went to work for Ralph Nader in Washington, DC for $7,500.00 a year.
So is it a surprise that I am performing The Actual Dance in the Indianapolis Fringe Festival in August? Or that last year I performed in the Capital Fringe in Washington, DC. It seems that I tend to operate ‘on the fringe” in almost everything I do.
What is more fringe than at 69 becoming a full time actor and playwright? Here I go again!
The Fringe Festival movement is a fabulous world-wide phenomena. In some ways it is a perfect form and forum for the 21st Century. The Fringe movement was originally contained to Edinburg Scotland and has expanded around the world and continues explosive growth. It is often cited as the non-profit equivalent of Southwest Airways in terms of its growth and meeting a previously undefined and unmet demand.
The Fringe began as a reaction to the Edinburg International Festival, an arts festival in Edinburg, Scotland in 1947. The International festival was highly selective in its offerings, focusing primarily on providing a venue to world famous artists and performers. The Fringe was community based arts and theater. The Edinburg Fringe has become the biggest arts festival in the world. It has spawned similar Fringe festivals around the country. Like Southwest Airlines which is democratizing air travel, The Fringe movement is democratizing performance art and opportunities.
The Indianapolis Fringe Festival, like almost all of them, is growing and expanding both its offerings and its physical plant. The Actual Dance at the IndyFringe will be performed this year in a brand new, 100 Seat Theater space called The BLOC 800 Theater Our performance dates and times are Thursday, August 14, 2014 - 9:00pm Saturday, August 16, 2014 - 7:30pmSunday, August 17, 2014 - 1:30pmMonday, August 18, 2014 - 9:00pmFriday, August 22, 2014 - 10:30pmSaturday, August 23, 2014 - 7:30pm
It is exciting, chaotic and challenging to be one of 64 different performance groups, each offering 6 performances at 8 different venues. As I think about the challenge of filling a total of 600 seats I do wonder, just wonder if I am now operating too far out on the fringe.