I am always surprised by the number of people who are lucky enough to live out the summer in Montréal, and yet have never been to the Fringe festival. Here are 5 reasons why it's time to go (you have until Sunday June 23rd).
1. The variety
Yeah OK, the Fringe festival is mostly focused on theatre. If you're a theatre newby, these performances are actually a great initiation point, because most of them last 45 min to 1 hour, which does not leave you time to get bored. But if you're really not into theatre, you can definitely stick to the POP Montreal music performances, the drag races, or to the 13th hour DJ sessions at the Cabaret du Mile End.
Check out the 13th hour tonight or Saturday starting at 1:00 am with DJs and drinking spinning wheel games.
2. It's cheap, or FREE
The most you'll ever have to pay to see show is 10$, but many of them have discounts for students, and also for random criteria (i.e. 5$ for all those who come with a funny hat), and some are totally free. If you're feeling lazy, you can lounge at the Fringe parc (corner of St-Laurent and Rachel) to enjoy some free live music, yoga, and (not free) beer.
3. It's full of QUEBECERS
That's right. 70% of performers are Quebecer; 15% are Canadian; and 15% are international artists. And while most shows are in English, there's a significant portion of shows in French. On top of that, ANYONE can apply to perform at the Fringe during the selection period. But don't think that's a bad sign: only the best get selected.
4. There's 0% censure
That's right. The play I saw on Wednesday was Chairs: a Parable (about a society of three men who unintentionally build a hierarchy amongst them). I think I heard the word ''Fuck'' or its derivatives about 12 times in one minute. There's also late-night strip spelling bee...
5. It's a sweet place to volunteer at
The festival organizers are always looking for volunteers. For every shift, volunteers get to see a free show. And if you're feeling adventurous, do the overnight shift: from midnight to 10 am, you're basically guarding the beer kegs at the Fringe parc from the hobbos. But what really happens is that you eat free pizza and bagels, drink lots of coffee, and bond for 10 hours with 5 other volunteers. An interesting experience.
That's five for the Fringe.
Now give me a single reason why you shouldn't go. Nope? Alright, get the fuck up from your couch.
Check the full schedule HERE