Fringe Questions Answered
According to our Fringe 2015 survey, these are the things you wanted to know.
The Fringe Lottery
Q. Is it really a lottery?
A. Yes it really is a lottery. We receive over 700 applications which are then divided into various categories, including National, International, General and FringeKids. Each applicant receives a lottery number. At the lottery party, we have small pieces of cardboard with the lottery numbers on them and these are verified by various people at the event. All applicants are welcome to verify that their number is present. Once they have been verified, numbers are dropped into a RubberMaid bin in front of the audience, and the winning numbers are drawn.
Q. Can you give young artists more opportunity?
A. In addition to running the T.E.N.T. (Theatre Entrepreneurs’ Network & Training) Program, which connects young creative entrepreneurs with theatre experts, we also have a partnership with both The Randolph Academy and the Paprika Festival to ensure young artists have a platform at the Fringe.
Q. Can you have less of a lottery and more of a jury?
A. Then we wouldn’t be a Fringe, as per our CAFF (Canadian Association of Fringe Festivals) mandate. We invite you to our The Next Stage Theatre Festival for a juried experience!
Q. Can you distribute your brochures further afield and in more locations?
A. Our distribution list will be posted on the website when they are out. We are now including the Bloor West Village but much of our brochure distribution is done by volunteers. We do encourage people to download the app as we strive to print less and be more environmentally conscious.
Q. Does the pull out schedule have to be glossy?
A. We heard you loud and clear- no glossy in 2016 so you can mark and highlight your program guides with ease.
Q. Can the programs be sorted by genres, themes, artists by country and award-winning artists?
A. We are keeping the program as is but looking at adding other ways to highlight certain aspects through the website and the app.
Tickets and Passes
Q. Do you have to have 100% of the tickets on sale in advance?
A. The move to having 100% of tickets available for sale in advance was made to benefit both the artists in our festival and our patrons. Artists can now accurately judge how their shows are selling, and do not need to rely on 50% of their tickets all being sold in an hour directly prior to show time. Patrons are able to plan their show schedules with more accuracy. Of course, many shows do not sell out, and in these cases any remaining tickets are available for sale at the door.
Q. Can you have a rush ticket policy?
A. We have a rush tickets system for volunteers.
Q. Why can’t you resell unclaimed tickets at the door of a venue?
A. As per the Ontario Consumers Protection Act, we are not permitted to re-sell goods (ie. tickets) that have been sold to a consumer.
Q. Can we pick up all our tickets at the first show?
A. The best way to get all your tickets is to go to our Festival box office at the Fringe club and ask one of our staff to print them all for you, or use our self-serve kiosk in the same location.
Q. Why do you have a “per order” additional charge online and on the phone? There is already $2/ticket for advance booking.
A. As we return the full ticket price to our festival participants, all additional fees go towards paying for our box office system and staff.
Q. Why do you have such a strict latecomer policy?
A. The latecomer policy came into effect at the request of our patrons. Not only does it create a more enjoyable experience for our audience but it is also there to protect the health and safety of everyone.
Q. Can we get WiFi at the Fringe Club?
A. At this time it would be cost prohibitive for us.
Q. Could there be beer tickets you could buy with Visa/debit?
A. This is something we are looking into.
Q. Can we have a heads up about limited seating?
A. All venue capacities are listed in the program and the website.
Q. Can we have information on the Fringe shed shows on the website?
A. It was there but we will try and make it more visible.
Q. Can we search multiple genres on the website at the same time?
A. Not at the moment but it’s on our list of things we would like to implement.
Q. Can you schedule more openings for unknown/emerging/new companies in time for major reviewers to write about them?
A. The schedule is very complex and we try to be fair to everyone by giving them a range of show times across the 12 days of the festival. We don’t control what the media decides to review or when.
Q. On the app, can we get push notifications for cancelled shows, addresses of each venue, and have numbers on the drops on the map, can it work on a blackberry, track shows to help with scheduling and highlighting all performances in the My Fringe Section?
A. We are taking all of these notes and taking them to our planning meeting with our app developer.
Q. Can you sell Fringe merchandise?
A. We’re hoping to have merchandise in 2016 commemorating Honest Ed’s! Keep an eye on our website for more details.
Q. Can we have more awards?
A. We are talking about adding some awards. Feel free to send us your ideas!
Q. Can you tell us Fringe specific public transit instructions?
A. Yes, great idea. In 2016 we will endeavour to have more detailed public transit plans on our website or redirects to the TTC Trip Planner.