Advice from an expert: Vol. VIII. Founder of the Fringe (and Tony Nominator) tells how to get involved! When I think of summer in the city, I think of sweatin’ while waiting (and waiting) on a subway platform for a 1 train, that strange smell from sun-soaked garbage . . . and The Fringe Festival!

Today, on The Producer’s Perspective, I give you Elena Holy, the founder of The Fringe; that all-you-can-eat buffet for theater lovers!  Elena is going to share a few words with you on how The Fringe got started, and how you can polish your Producing skills by producing a show at the Fringe this summer!

Oh, and yes, it is true.  Elena was a Tony Nominator this year.  But don’t waste your time asking her why 9 to 5 wasn’t nominated.  She won’t answer.

I know, because I already tried.

Heeeeeeeeeere’s Elena!

– – – – –

As you may have heard,

the shows accepted to be a part of FringeNYC 2009 have been posted. This marks the end of a very busy, wonderful, excruciating adjudication process. But just because we’ve selected our shows, doesn’t mean that your opportunity to be a part of the largest multi-arts festival in North America has passed! 

I’m often asked what it took to start FringeNYC (and I’ve been quoted as answering “youth and ignorance”), but to keep FringeNYC growing, it takes a village – seriously. You see, FringeNYC continues to operate as a Great Inverted Pyramid:

75,000 Audience Members
..5,000 Artists
..1,500 Volunteers
..1,100 Performances
..1,000 Applications
…..200 Shows
…… 20 Venues
…….16 Days
…….15 Dollar Tickets

…….13 Years 

………2 Full-time Staff Members


If you’re curious as to how this is possible, you can get further information here (or watch me try to describe it here). Simply put, we couldn’t do this without our audience and our artists. But the third necessary (and beloved) component is definitely our volunteer staff (who do everything from writing for our newspaper to building sql databases to pulling industry comps to printing tickets). If you’d like to join the FringeNYC Volunteer Staff, the first step is to attend a NEWBIE MEETING.

If you don’t have the time to join the staff, you’re also welcome to be a short-term volunteer. And the best part is, volunteering at FringeNYC is “work a shift, see a show” – for each two hour shift you volunteer, you receive a voucher good for a ticket to any performance at FringeNYC. All you have to do is register here.

If, on the other hand, you can devote all the time in the world to FringeNYC from August 14th – 30th, we also have stipended staff positions available – and interviews are happening now!

And for those of you who are DIRECTORS or PRODUCERS, we have two new opportunities for more project-specific work this year. Read on!


Have you ever wanted to direct or produce a show presented as a part of The New York International Fringe Festival (FringeNYC)? Have you wondered how to get in touch with the shows that need a Director or a Producer? And how do you know which projects you might be a good fit for?

Now is your chance to meet up with FringeNYC 2009 shows that are in search of a director or producer.


On Saturday, June 6th, representatives of FringeNYC shows will gather for our annual Town Meeting, and then those in search of a Director for their project will split off into a separate area, ready to meet you! FringeNYC’s Speed Dates are an opportunity to spend three minutes with representatives of dozens of shows, exchange information, and decide which projects are of interest to you. Then it’s up to you to set up a time to take it to the next step.

General information you should know:

FringeNYC is August 14th – 30th, 2009. Most of our shows are produced under the AEA Showcase Code plus the FringeNYC Side Letter. FringeNYC includes 200+ shows that are: Clown / Mask, Comedy, Dance, Drama, Spoken Word / Poetry, Improv / Sketch / Stand-up, Multi-media, Musical, Performance Art, Puppetry, Solo Shows, and every possible combination thereof!

*An ACR is an “Authorized Company Re
presentative”. Each FringeNYC show needs one – and they function as the show’s representative at the box office, often handle marketing, contracts, some management and producing. The ACRs job description will vary greatly by show – but if you’re looking for a project or want to gain actual producing experience, this is a great place for you!

If you are interested in attending, all you need to do is REGISTER for the event. PLEASE NOTE: Only those who have REGISTERED will be able to attend, due to limited capacity.

Here are the basics:

WHAT: FringeNYC’s Director / ACR Speed Dates

WHEN: Saturday, June 6th at 3pm

WHERE: Location will be announced to those who register.

REGISTRATION: To register, simply click the appropriate link below:



GENERAL INFORMATION: About FringeNYC is available at

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Ken created one of the first Broadway podcasts, recording over 250 episodes over 7 years. It features interviews with A-listers in the theater about how they “made it”, including 2 Pulitzer Prize Winners, 7 Academy Award Winners and 76 Tony Award winners. Notable guests include Pasek & Paul, Kenny Leon, Lynn Ahrens and more.