Fringe Festival returns music, comedy and theatre to Hamilton for 20th event

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Published June 13, 2024 at 12:47 pm

The Hamilton Fringe Festival is back with comedians, musicians and theatre troupes to entertain the city on its 20th anniversary.

The festival will feature more than 50 performing companies across more than 350 events throughout the city. The Fringe Festival is among Hamilton’s largest events bringing 15,000 attendees to the city from across Canada and the United States last year.

This year the festival will feature 28 Fringe plays across numerous famous venues such as Theatre Aquarius, Mills Hardware, the Staircase, Hamilton Theatre Inc, and Players’ Guild.

They’ve also established a new full venue partnership with TheWestdale and a new Mini Bar series of four shows at The Ringside, a renovated 1940s boxing gym. Shows include sketch comedy, improv, theatre, dance, puppetry, magic, musicals, and more

The event also features Fringe On The Streets, a free walking tour through a host of performers along the King Street and James Street corridor, and a Fringe Info Hub in Jackson Square.

Finally, the Fringe Club Outdoor Stage & Patio returns to Theatre Aquarius day and night. They’ve partnered with Vintage Coffee Roasters to serve food and drink. Much of this is available to attendees if they buy and wear a $4 badge. The badges fund the event.

However individual productions charge for tickets. All proceeds go directly to the artists. A full list of productions is available online. Tickets are available 45 minutes before the curtains rises. There are also combo tickets which allow entrance to between three and 20 shows.

The Fringe Festival was born in 1947 when “audacious Scottish theatre rebels” crashed the Edinburgh International Festival, a three-week theatre event in Scotland’s capital city. These rebels performed on the “fringe” of the festival.

“They ignited a revolution of wild, unfiltered creativity that totally upstaged the more established festival,” according to the Hamilton Festival, “This daring act of defiance unleashed a global phenomenon, with Fringe festivals around the world becoming the ultimate playground for boundary-pushing artists and thrill-seeking audiences.”

The Hamilton events take place over 12 days from July 17 to 28.

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