For eleven days, San Francisco's Union Square will be blazing with live art. The Fifth Annual San Francisco Fringe Festival, subtitled "A Cornucopia of Theatrics" will take place in five theatres, each in walking distance from one another, in San Francisco's Union Square theatre district, September 5-15.
This year, the non-curated, non-censored festival will include over 200 performances, all under 60 minutes, by fifty theatre companies from around the world. The theatrical styles range from straight drama , comedy and dance, to avant-garde, experimental and magic, to works that "defy categorization."
With cabarets, contests, and improvs, no performance in the entire festival costs more than $7, and all revenues go to the performers. The festival kicks off with a "tag team triathalon" hosted by female comedy group Nude Coffee. Three fringe performers will compete against each other, each presenting an Ethel Merman song, a Shakespeare monologue and an improv with prop.
The Festival will end with the "Best of the Fringe" closing night celebration, featuring the music of the San Francisco Fringe Festival Blues All-Stars. The most popular and outstanding artists will be chosen to revise their performances.
Some performers featured are The Bubalaires, a mime troop from LA; Deb Pickman, Brian Peterson and Renee Iaci, a theatre troop from Vancouver, B.C.; Dappin' Butoh , an experimental theatre group from Seattle; The Acme Miniature Circus; magician Michael Marlin; San Francisco theatre company Theatre Au Natural; and Elisa DeCarlo, a performance artist from New York City. The Fifth Annual San Francisco Fringe Festival takes place September 5 through the 15, at five theatres: The EXIT Theatre , The new EXIT Stage Left, 156 Eddy St., The Geary Studio Theatre, 450 Geary St., Lorraine Hansberry Theatre, 620 Sutter St., The Shelton , 533 Sutter St (lower level). Tickets are $7 max and available at the door only. For information and further listings, call (415) 673-3847.
--By Blair Glaser