Since the immediate weeks following up to Fringe can be a crazy, all-over-the-place, entertaining spectacle, choosing a circus theme seemed more than appropriate.
“Things are very busy right now,” Winnipeg Fringe Festival executive producer Chuck McEwan said Friday, five days before Wednesday’s premiere. “It’s a fun thing. It’s crazy. It
Big Top Fringe marks the Winnipeg Fringe Festival’s 24th year and, save for
Edmonton, is North America’s largest fringe
“I think (the reason) it works so well in Winnipeg (is that) we’re a small city, we’re known for our arts and culture here and we’re supportive of that. We’re a festival city: they happen one after the other in the summer.”
There are 150 acts this year, down three from last year, said McEwan, due to fact there were fewer BYOV (bring your own venue) groups searching for space.
But the familiar things are there: groups both
local and international, vendors from around the city selling food, jewelry and clothing, and, of course, the outdoor stage, which is free.
“What’s new this year is we’re really pushing for those people who work downtown, who maybe don’t live downtown, to come to Old Market Square and enjoy the free entertainment every lunch hour,” said McEwan.
The festival is still looking for volunteers, for
this year, or to sign up for next year.
“Next year is 25 years. We want to be ready.”