ORLANDO — Artists who have submitted applications for shows to be performed at the Orlando International Fringe Theatre Festival, as well as fans of this annual performance event have a big day coming on Monday, when we get to learn which shows will be a part of next May’s festival.
The Orlando Fringe Lottery is being held on Monday, Dec. 4 at 6 p.m. at the Orlando Fringe ArtSpace in downtown Orlando.
“This event is open to anyone who would like to join us at ArtSpace to watch the lottery event live and in-person,” noted Tempestt Halstead, the Fringe producer, who added that lobby doors will open at 5 p.m. so patrons can grab a drink, and then the lottery begins at 6 p.m. ArtSpace is at 54 W. Church St.
“Can’t make it live?! No worries, we will be live streaming the event on our socials and website so you can invite the rest of your team to celebrate from the comfort of their home,” she added, noting that people can link onto LIVE STREAM to watch live.
Fringe will also be hosting a special holiday celebration before the lottery from 4-6 p.m. as a Mixer and White Elephant gift exchange. “The rules are simple,” Halstead noted. “You can’t spend any money on the gift, you must wrap it, and the more ridiculous the better. Everyone who brings a gift will get a gift. The ArtSpace Bar will be open with a signature cocktail! I look forward to celebrating with each of you at the event!”
Fringe Lottery is an opportunity for the public to watch which artists get chosen to perform at the 33rd Orlando International Fringe Theatre Festival next May. Names are pulled out of the hat and read aloud. Artists who didn’t get selected will be placed on a waiting list in the event that some of the chosen winners decide not to move forward with their application.
The Orlando Fringe Festival is the oldest Fringe in the nation. It was created in 1991 by Terry Olson, Andy Anthony and Rick Kunst, and held in 1992 in downtown Orlando. The concept was simple: a festival featuring multiple theatrical shows, mostly done in venues in empty storefronts. In 2004, the festival started to relocate to Loch Haven Park, and from 2005 on, the festival has been held entirely in that park and in nearby Ivanhoe Village. It’s the longest running Fringe Festival in the United States, a 14-day festival held in the spring.
Michael Freeman is an Orlando journalist, playwright, and author of the book A Christmas Eve Story. Contact him at Freelineorlando@gmail.com.