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2014 San Diego International Fringe Festival: On the fringe of greatness

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My first live experience with the San Diego International Fringe Festival was weird. And weird is a wonderful thing. Kevin Charles Patterson, director of the festival, and his staff have put together a performing arts event like no other. Last night's press preview, which consisted of about 30 different performances at two minutes each, was like a rooftop garden party taken over by your inappropriate, albeit lovable family members. Performances going over the two-minute mark were chased off the stage.

The rooftop of the Tenth Avenue Arts Center in downtown San Diego was the perfect setting for the party mix of stage artists who were ready to entertain the audience. Should mention that I did not notice the elevator, so walked up multiple flights of stairs and at one point, accidentally walked into the “green room” of performers who didn’t seem to notice me and/or didn’t seem to care. How well I blend in!

To summarize the event would be nearly impossible because it’s much more of an experience rather than individual reviews of what to see. One of the major pluses of the festival extending from July 3rd through July 13th is that you have an opportunity to see as many performances as possible.

Does dance tickle your fancy? They have ballet, tap, and avant garde expression just to name a few. What about theater? One-person shows, group tributes, and musical numbers. Whatever you want, the festival most likely have a performance to deliver.

Then there are those off-the-beaten-path performances including one of my favorites from the preview “Around the World in 80 Years” starring D’yan Forest, 80, who plays a ukulele singing about the most surprising subjects. Her performances are scheduled for the Cabaret Theatre at the Tenth Avenue Arts Center.

Other notable entertainment acts included:

  • Dr. Frankenstein’s Traveling Freak Show playing at The Spreckels Theatre for Fringe Off Broadway
  • Pretending Things Are a C*ck playing at the Tenth Ave Arts Center Main Stage
  • Life Sucks and Then You Die playing at San Diego Central Library Auditorium (and also appearing on “America’s Got Talent”

However, this barely skims the surface of the kinds of performances you’ll see and enjoy from local, national, and international performers for this year’s 2014 San Diego International Fringe Festival. There will also be a special Family Fringe day next Saturday, July 12th at Horton Plaza.

The performances are playing around the clock for the next several days among venues all over the city. With 100% of proceeds going directly to the artists, it would be a shame to miss out on the kind of passionate artistic creativity seeping from the pores of all involved.

Purchasing a Fringe tag also gets you special offers at restaurants downtown during the festival. Horton Plaza is offering $6 all day parking (until 10 p.m.) for Fringe attendees with validation from The Lyceum Theatre and The Spreckels Theatre for the day of 7/7/14. For more information visit: www.sdfringe.org.

Get your tickets at: www.sdfringe.ticketleap.com.

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