2011 Festival Review
vancouverfringe.com Vancouver Fringe Festival 1
Photos courtesy of our Volunteer Photographers: Aliyah Ashraf Ariel Fournier Thorsten Gohl Rachelle Jones Lachlan McAdam Wendy McAlpine Gala Milne Skot Nelson Emily White Illustrations by Zuzia Juszkiewicz
For sponsorship information and opportunities, please contact: David Jordan, Executive Director email@example.com or Gareth Duncan, Director of Development firstname.lastname@example.org Thanks to the Vancouver Fringe Festival 2011 Staff and Volunteers for their immense contribution to the Festival! 2 vancouverfringe.com
Table of Contents Letter from Executive Director, David Jordan ........................................ 4 New in 2011 ................................................. 5 Thanks to Our Partners .......................... 6 Marketing Initiatives ............................. 8 Opening Night ..........................................10 Fringe Onsite ............................................12 Fringe-For-All ..........................................14 Sweet on the Fringe ............................... 15 Artistsâ€™ Cabaret .....................................15 St. Ambroise Fringe Bar at AGRO CafĂŠ & the Wild Horse Canyon Stage .......16 Art (is)land ..............................................18 Fringe Awards Night & the Public Market Pick of the Fringe ................19 Plans for 2012 .......................................... 20
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nother year, another fantastic Festival! We staged almost 750 performances of 86 shows from around the world. We measured up to last yearâ€™s explosive record, with over 31,000 in attendance over 11 days! As always, we presented a wonderful variety of theatre: dance, puppetry, acrobatics, traditional solo, and ensemble shows. One of the most popular shows, Grim and Fisher, portrayed an epic duel between a granny and the Grim Reaper. There were magic shows, musicals, and mysteries. There were shows about human rights, hockey, and history. There were shows about god, sex, brothels, and everything in betweenâ€”proof that programming un-previewed material yields results more wild and wonderful than one could imagine! Audiences were thrilled, as always, with the wide array of theatrical treats. We always say that the Fringe is part theatre, part celebration. If the numbers at the St. Ambroise Fringe Bar are any indication, the party was up 50% this year! With workshops, forums, and live entertainment night after night, the Fringe Bar is a perfect backdrop for the social interaction that fuels the Fringe. This Festival keeps building in so many ways. The Onsite Program was a fantastic new venture that
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brought outdoor site-specific theatre to Granville Island. These artists created new pieces of theatre under the mentorship of The Only Animal, Vancouver’s premier site-specific theatre company. The participants were grateful for the unique opportunity to create work with such experienced guidance—and the audiences were thrilled to see theatre come out of every nook and cranny. In our audience survey 79% said they’re excited by seeing theatre in unusual locations—so we delivered! We’re so proud to say that now more than ever before we are making our vision of
“Theatre for Everyone” a reality. Our partners outdid themselves in making the Festival happen. Sponsors and funders, donors, staff, volunteers, artists, and our board of directors showed a new level of commitment to making the Fringe shine brighter as we gathered around the flame of the Festival. Thanks to all for your warmth. Fringefully yours, David Jordan Vancouver Fringe Festival 5
Thanks Partners! W
ithout our sponsor partners, the Fringe Festival would be a different and, likely, less successful endeavour. The cash and increased in-kind investments from returning and new sponsors helped us produce a smash Festival that was one of our best yet! We bid a hearty welcome back to returning sponsors: CMHC Granville Island, Mac Station, CTV, McAuslan-St. Ambroise, Camino, Wild Horse Canyon, Speedpro Imaging, AGRO Café, Origins Organic Coffee, Dockside Restaurant, Blenz Coffee, and CiTR 101.9fm! These partners support the backbone of the Fringe, enabling us to deliver a solid Festival year after year. We’d like to extend special thanks to Camino and Wild Horse Canyon for their significantly increased involvement, which was particularly evident during the Opening Night and at the St. Ambroise Fringe Bar at AGRO Café, the Wild Horse Canyon Stage, and the Camino Lounge! With huge thanks we welcome new sponsors this year: the Georgia Straight, Strut Studios, car2go, Legacy Liquor Store, and PrintPrint.ca. Indeed, all Festival Partners could join us in thanking the Georgia Straight, whose extensive coverage and advertising of the Festival provided additional exposure to all sponsors. Strut Studios contributed to our Opening Night attendance success and helped many artists market their shows. Without car2go, we may not have been able to manage the large number of Festival venues. Legacy Liquor Store helped us take the St. Ambroise Fringe Bar at AGRO Café to new levels, accommodating greatly increased crowds. PrintPrint.ca filled an emergency void in our printing needs as if they’d been our partner for years. Thanks for being a crucial part of the Fringe! 6 vancouverfringe.com
he Fringe continues to grow, building new audiences and strategic partnerships every year. We value the important role that corporate partners play in supporting the growth of the Fringe. In turn, when companies sponsor the Fringe, they reap the benefits of associating with a world class event while developing a meaningful relationship with our large and diverse audience. We invite you to interact with up to 30,000 Festival goers throughout Greater Vancouver and 350,000 Granville Island visitors by becoming a sponsor of the Fringe! Below are the different sponsorship levels and some highlights of what your organization will receive at each level.
Become a Sponsor Presenting Partner $35,000+ • Exclusive event naming rights and associated event marketing and publicity • Co-branding with Fringe • Co-promotion of partnership, especially through Fringe email marketing • High profile media promotion • Complimentary full page, full colour ad in Festival Program Guide Signature Partner $20,000+ • Category exclusivity • Venue naming rights and customized promotional opportunities • Complimentary full page, full colour ad in Festival Program Guide Leading Partner $15,000+ • Opening Night presence, podium recognition • Complimentary half page, full colour ad in Festival Program Guide
Supporting Partner $10,000+ • Complimentary quarter page, full colour ad in Festival Program Guide • Logo placement in Festival Program Guide and on Partner Recognition Boards, posters, advertising, and website Sustaining Partner $2,500+ • Discounted advertising in Festival Program Guide • Partner listing on Partner Recognition Boards and website • Partner Festival package (tickets to Opening Night and Mainstage performances) Community Partner $1,500+ • Partner listing on Partner Recognition Boards and website • Tickets to Mainstage performances Vancouver Fringe Festival 7
he Fringe has always enjoyed a loyal and large audienceâ€”and theyâ€™re our best source of old fashioned word of mouth advertising! These days this is fortified with social media. The Fringe has active conversations with 3,600+ Facebook fans and 3,400+ Twitter followers. This web presence is anchored by our website which sees nearly 100,000 yearly visits spiking with over 34,000 in August and September alone. We back this up with a substantial 10-week paid and sponsored advertising campaign in the Georgia Straight in addition to the 8-page pullout section in the September 8, 2011 issue. We also produce a 15-second television commercial that airs on CTV as part of our sponsorship agreement. Outdoor advertising includes 10 Transit Shelter Advertising placements and the outdoor screen at Robson and Granville (which airs our TV commercial) through the Cultural Services Program at the City of Vancouver. This
year’s TSAs were well positioned to include high traffic spots like the intersection of Robson and Burrard Streets. We also do a city wide poster campaign. The outdoor advertising campaign ran August through September. The bread and butter of our marketing is our e-newsletter, which we send to more than 16,000 subscribers 20 times a year. These newsletters give our fan base an in depth look at the Festival and Vancouver’s theatre scene. We get great feedback from subscribers saying that they thoroughly read our newsletters and enjoy the well written content. The other half of our bread and butter sandwich is our program guide. The 52page tabloid style program was distributed
throughout the city at Blenz Coffee locations, community centres, libraries, and other Fringe friendly businesses. 30,000 copies were distributed and the guide received over 22,000 online views. In 2010, we added an iPhone App, which was updated for 2011. Patrons could find shows and purchase tickets through the App and use it as a general guide to the Festival. “This makes my Fringe planning so easy... I need an app like this for my life!” Jtgwoodward commented on the iTunes store. Finally, we do many cross promotional initiatives with arts organizations throughout the city including the Pacific Cinematheque, Festival Cinemas, and local theatre companies.
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pening Night, our signature fundraising event, was yet another fantastic start to a fantastic Festival. We raised over $28,000—a 50% increase over 2010! Held at Performance Works on Granville Island, the evening began with tasty hors d’oeuvres from the Lazy Gourmet, Dockside Restaurant, and The Keg. The patio was abuzz with excited bidding on a wide range of Silent Auction items and wine sampling courtesy of Rigamarole and the Mark Anthony Group. Following a warm welcome from CTV’s beloved weathercaster Marke Driesschen, audience favourite David C. Jones emceed the night, which featured performances from seven 2011 Fringe Festival shows. This year we introduced performance auctioneer Elias Arjan to add to the frenzy, and what a frenzy it was! Armed with “Jimmy” auction paddles, guests bid on artwork, hotel packages, ranch getaways, and a private performance from resident magician Travis Bernhardt. This year’s Live Auction alone raised over $12,000—a massive increase over last year!
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his year featured a new mentorship program, Fringe Onsite. Led by The Only Animal, Vancouver’s premier site-specific theatre company, Fringe Onsite gave artists the chance to develop skills in producing site-specific theatre, and for the first time in its history, the Fringe was involved in the creation of new work presented at the Festival. Generously sponsored by the Royal Bank of Canada’s Emerging Artists Program and the City of Vancouver’s Artist in Residency program, artists in the Fringe Onsite program worked over the course of six months with the Only Animal’s Producing Artistic Director, Kendra Fanconi, to write and stage a story inspired by a space on Granville Island. They brought the space to life with actors, costumes, sound, and lights for the Fringe in September. Artists learned about the challenges of working outside the walls of a theatre and shows took place by sculptures, on boats, under docks, and in other surprising locations. “This is my first full-length self-created and produced show. Support from Fringe Onsite has not only made it seem possible, it has made it absolutely manageable,” program participant Kyla Ferrier explains. “Further to the technical and administrative assistance is the creative meat of the course: choosing a site, constructing form and content, and methods of devising theatre. This was a big leap for me and the support to be bold and innovative has been unflagging.” For the Fringe, Onsite was a way of deepening its commitment to artist development and of ensuring that Granville Island remains a dynamic site. For audiences, it meant even more theatrical surprises!
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The Georgia Straight
his year marked our first ever The Georgia Straight Fringe-For-All â€”a fantastic performance frenzy that kicked off the Festival. In just under two hours, a packed house had the unique opportunity to preview 40 Fringe shows! Based on a first come, first served basis, a long list of Fringe performers signed up to showcase their show in just two minutesâ€”without their usual lighting or sound cues. The audience was energetic and supportive, and the community between the Fringe artists was palpable, setting a tone for the 11 days to follow.
Sweet on the Fringe
New Corporate Matching Opportunity
ur fun Sweet on the Fringe version of the “pass the hat” was a big success. In exchange, for their love and pocket change, everyone got something chocolatey from Camino (and vouchers for more goodies at the Camino Lounge). This year’s efforts earned over $9,000 for the Fringe—our highest numbers yet in the fourth year of the campaign. In 2011 we successfully expanded the campaign to introduce matching donations from corporate and individual supporters. Audiences repsonded to the leveraging challenge, producing a marked increase that gave us one of our highest donation days ever.
perennial highlight of the Vancouver Fringe is the Cabaret put on by the Fringe’s touring artists on the Festival’s final Saturday. Raising over $1,500 for the Fringe, the Cabaret was yet another memorable and unique Fringe experience and a fundraiser show like no other! Once again, the formidable spoken word artist Jem Rolls corralled a long list of Fringe artists who made the Cabaret the place to be that night. Lit only by audience flashlights, fun, funny, and sublimely ridiculous performances popped out of the darkness and charmed the lively crowd who packed into the standing room only event at Performance Works. Vancouver Fringe Festival 15
f 2010 was the blast off year for the St. Ambroise Fringe Bar at AGRO Café, 2011 saw it hit the stratosphere with a 50% increase in sales! Driven by a combination of last year’s success (especially the infamous dance party in the rain), our new Partner, Legacy Liquor Store, and increased programming on the Wild Horse Canyon Stage, the Fringe Bar had noticeably larger crowds and was, at times, almost bursting at the seams. The outdoor stage presence increased in look and quality, with live music ranging from indie folk rock and cabaret to traditional Eastern European and West African, a different DJ each night, plus popular forums and artists workshops. Within spitting distance of the Fringe Bar and the stage, patrons could enjoy tasty snacks and micro-meals from the AGRO Café and a different food vendor each night. For a small donation, folks also could sample from a variety of fair trade, organic candy bars and juices at the Camino Lounge or they could realize their inner dress-up fantasies at the Broadway Camera photo booth.
St. Ambroise Fringe Bar at AGRO CafĂŠ & the Wild Horse Canyon Stage
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rt installations dotted the Fringe Festival hub on Granville Island thanks to a partnership with the Art Is Land Network. With 11 installations highlighting Granville Islandâ€™s industrial past, the First Nations people who once lived here, and the relationships between us and the space we inhabit, a visual art element was added to our patronsâ€™ Fringe experiences. In addition to the self-guided walking tour, the Art is Land Network offered free walking tours and interactive installations. Response was positive with 30% of patrons planning to visit installations.
Fringe Awards Night & Public Market Pick of the Fringe
he third annual Fringe Awards Night was a standing room only evening of excitement and hilarity. It marked the closing of the Festival and culminated in the naming of the popular Public Market Pick of the Fringe Awards winners. They enjoyed an extended run at the Waterfront Theatre during the week after the Fringe. This year, in addition to the sought-after Cultchivating the Fringe Award (in collaboration with The Cultch) and Joanna Maratta Award, the Fringe joined forces with the Vancouver Playhouse Theatre Company to introduce the Fringe Playhouse Award. For the second year in a row, the Fringe and Fringe artists partnered with the Greater Vancouver Food Bank Society. Many artists again donated portions of their proceeds to the Food Bank and entrance to the Fringe Awards Night was by cash donation to the Food Bank. Total donations of over $1,700 will allow the Food Bank to raise over $5,000 worth of food for local Vancouverites! Vancouver Fringe Festival 19
Plans for 2012
n 2012 we will continue to develop the Festival with the continuation of the Fringe Onsite Program. Weâ€™ll find new nooks and crannies to make into tiny, intimate stages. We will also be cooking up new ways to enliven our site to make the Festival experience happen both inside and outside of theatres. And of course we will serve up our predictably unpredictable array of theatrical treatsâ€”over 700 performances in 11 days!