KeyBank Rochester Fringe Festival @ Home

The ninth KeyBank Rochester Fringe Festival comes to a provisional close after Saturday's shows. All of the performances have been virtual, as we’ve been reminding people throughout the festival's 12 days. Yet while the scheduled events will be gone, the on-demand shows — which are actually the bulk of the festival — will linger a while in the cloud. By purchasing a ticket before the end of Rochester Fringe on Saturday, you can watch that show through Oct. 10. The schedule, and tickets, are at rochesterfringe.com.

Fringe Day Eleven: Down the rabbit hole

Sep 25, 2020

Fringe festivals are diversity. Today, as the KeyBank Rochester Fringe Festival moves into its final weekend, we plunge down a Alice in Wonderland rabbit hole of experimental film, experimental interactive theater, and the resurrection of a "Dangerous Signs" show by National Technical Institute for the Deaf's Performing Arts at Rochester Institute of Technology.

"#txtshow (on the internet)"

Fringe Day Ten: Cirque du Fringe goes ‘Laugh-In’ on us

Sep 24, 2020

Now in its ninth year, we already know what to expect of the KeyBank Rochester Fringe Festival – or most any other fringe festival – even under non-coronavirus conditions. A diverse array of music, dance, theater, spoken word, puppets, magic and more, with artists bending Shakespeare into unrecognizable shapes to suit their own purposes.

With these shows, we will witness great artistic achievement. We will see shows that are works in progress. We will see failures.

"Contemporary Musicians' Guide to Modern Love"

It's clear from the outset of "Contemporary Musicians' Guide to Modern Love" that this isn't just a standard recital presentation.

Smart art must make smart choices.

And the process often means making far more compromises than most artists will admit to. The coronavirus pandemic has forced the arts to re-think everything. As in: To what degree will our society be embracing virtual presentation of the arts?

The answer is being explored in a major way during Rochester Fringe. It is a petri dish of virtual performance as we watch what kind of bacteria, mosses or pleasantly edible fungi emerge over this 12-day experiment. Is virtual arts useful culture, or is it contamination?


At only 30 minutes, the cultural showcase "#FolkloreLatino," presented by Grupo Cultural Latinos en Rochester, is a full-hearted, albeit brief respite from what has been a particularly tragic time locally, nationally, and throughout the world.

Fringe Day Seven: 'Disturbances a Deux'

Sep 21, 2020

COVID-19 forced the KeyBank Rochester Fringe Festival to reimagine its event for 2020, leaving organizers with the dilemma of how to present its annual selection of multi-genre arts performances at a time when live, in-person gatherings aren't allowed.

Provided by KeyBank Rochester Fringe Festival

What does dance performance actually look like in the pandemic era? The dance company Pones looks to answer this question literally in its 45-minute video performance “Proximity,” which is available on demand as part of this year’s KeyBank Rochester Fringe Festival. 

Screenshot from KeyBank Rochester Fringe Festival

The words of Black Lives Matter has shared the stage with many of the shows at the ninth annual KeyBank Rochester Fringe Festival. People should be allowed to live freely, rather than be players in a larger game, dancer Jason Nious said in the first edition of FringeTalk. “We should be allowed to just exist. And still matter.” 

Twenty-four hours later, in a similar FringeTalk forum for comics, former “Saturday Night Live” cast member and writer Tim Meadows said, “This country is in a weird place, people don’t trust each other, people are afraid of each other.”

Provided by KeyBank Rochester Fringe Festival

This is the season for slapstick, the motorcycle globe of death and slurred soliloquies. The KeyBank Rochester Fringe Festival unveils one of its marquee shows, “Cirque du Fringe: Quarantini,” previewed here along with its Shakespearean sideshow, “Shotspeare.” Plus, we have reviews of “Milkdrunk,” “The Nightmare” and “A Spy in the House of Men.”

You’ll find the complete schedule and ticket information at rochesterfringe.com.

Quarantinis and Shakespearean shots in the summer of coronavirus