2010 Indy Fringe – Last Day – Tweet Highlights and a Couple Other Reviews

(Photo above taken by me with my trusty iPhone.  The beautiful artwork on the buttons is by Lydia Burris.  Her larger, and even more beautiful, original IndyFringe piece was unveiled around the beginning of August 2010 and will be on display on the side of the Firefighters’ Memorial at the intersection of College and Massachusetts Avenues in downtown Indianapolis for one year.)

Well, another Indianapolis Fringe Theatre Festival draws to a close.  What a satisfying week it has been, both personally and artistically. 

Continue reading 2010 Indy Fringe – Last Day – Tweet Highlights and a Couple Other Reviews

2010 Indy Fringe: Day What? (2 more videos, a new venue, and some tweets)


I haven’t had much writing time during the past two days, but I was able to make two more little videos with performers from the 2010 Indianapolis Fringe Theatre Festival.

In the above video, playwright-performer Dan Bernitt talks about his solo staged reading of “Swan Balloon,” a fairy tale for adults. 

Continue reading 2010 Indy Fringe: Day What? (2 more videos, a new venue, and some tweets)

2010 Indy Fringe – Day Five – 1 Review, 2 Videos, and Some More Thoughts on Laughter

Yesterday I made two little videos while hanging out between shows at the 2010 Indianapolis Fringe Theatre Festival.  In the video above, “The Last Straight Man in Theatre,” Kurt Fitzpatrick, talks with me about his multi-media solo show (which I hope to see next weekend) and shares advice about how to succeed as a performer on the Fringe circuit.  He is from New York and has taken this particular Fringe show on the road throughout the Midwestern United States and Canada.

(While Kurt and I are talking, his stage manager is recording both of us for their own video files.)

The other little impromptu video, which is at the bottom of this post, is of cast members and friends of “Grind: the Musical” sharing songs from that show for the people walking by on Massachusetts Avenue.  I’m sorry I didn’t stand close enough for my iPhone to pick up the sound better, but I think you can still tell that there are some lovely singing voices in the “Grind” company.

Also at the bottom of this post is a review of “Bill and Erin: One Night Standards.”  But first I’d like to indulge myself with a sort of Fringe-goer’s reflective journal entry:

Continue reading 2010 Indy Fringe – Day Five – 1 Review, 2 Videos, and Some More Thoughts on Laughter

2010 Indy Fringe – Day Three – Three Shows

I stood to applaud after each of the three shows that I saw on my third day of the 2010 Indianapolis Fringe Theatre Festival, and not just because all three came with paper programs. 

Paper programs are understandably rare for Fringe shows since their cost keeps performers from reaching the goal of breaking even financially, let alone making a profit.  It can be argued that spare cash is better spent on designing and printing postcards that include a web address directing interested people to more info about the show’s background, cast, and design team.  The postcards double as programs and as something for “off-duty” performers to hand out as they’re schmoozing the people waiting in line for other shows.

However, for local (usually professional) theatre companies that exist, or hope to exist, beyond the Fringe circuit, a separate paper program, printed in judicious quantities so as not to waste paper, can offer a good return on investment in terms of audience development.

Paper programs are also a good way for a show’s producer/parent to publicly say “thank you” to the village of individuals that have helped raise the show, especially since there is little or no time for a curtain talk at a Fringe show.

Paper programs are also an opportunity for an additional revenue stream if someone associated with the show has the time and skill to go after paid advertising and get it into the paper program before the show opens.

I know, I know: paper programs use up limited natural resources.  I’m working on decreasing my carbon footprint by doing things like bringing my own cloth bags to the grocery store, but I think I will always enjoy bringing paper programs home from the theatre.

Anyway, here are my thoughts on the three IndyFringe shows I saw last night:

  Continue reading 2010 Indy Fringe – Day Three – Three Shows

2010 Indy Fringe – Day Two – Four Shows

On my second day of shows at the 2010 Indianapolis Fringe Theatre Festival, I found myself standing in line next to a zombie.  I asked if I could make a little video with him for my blog while we were waiting.  He “grrr!”ed affirmatively, so I pulled out my iPhone and began.

Unfortunately, I must not have tapped the correct icon, because when I got home, I had no zombie video.   “Epic fail!” as the gamers say.  Grr!

So…Zombie Ryan, if I see you around the Fringe again, I’d like to try again, if you’re willing.  In any case, I will look forward to seeing you in “Ophelia’s Revenge” at the Marian Underground venue later this week.

In the meantime, for my beloved blog readers I have two little videos of some of this year’s IndyFringe most hypnotic street performers.  The video at the top of this post is of Carenza bint Asya and her friends.  The video at the bottom of this post is of some hula hoopers about whom I know nothing, unfortunately, except that they were able to do amazing things with not only hoops but huge fire batons and more. 

(8-29-10 update:  The woman with the hula hoop in the video below left me a comment.  Her name is Lynn Spencer-Nelson and she is part of Indy Hoopers, a “Hoop Instruction Company.”  She teaches weekly classes and workshops.  Her company also offers instructional parties for ages 8 and up and parties just for fun for all ages.  They also bring nationally known instructors to the Indianapolis area.

The man in the video will always be Sexy Fire Guy to me, but he is officially part of a company called Phoenix Fire Productions. 

During the second weekend of the fringe, more performers from both groups were back on Mass. Ave., this time with a comedic announcer and many more kinds of hoops and fiery juggling items.  It was even more of a treat to watch their work a second time!)

I also saw four more shows in theatres at IndyFringe.  Here are my thoughts on them:

Continue reading 2010 Indy Fringe – Day Two – Four Shows

2010 Indy Fringe – Day One – Four Shows


I had a wonderful, wonderful first day of shows at the 2010 Indianapolis Fringe Theatre Festival yesterday.  I met some lovely new people (including Australian comedian Lou Sanz – see the little informal video we made after her first show, above) and reconnected with some dear friends.

And…I saw four satisfying shows!

Continue reading 2010 Indy Fringe – Day One – Four Shows

Lie-Berry Goes to the 2010 Indy Fringe Festival…and Beyond

My angel card for this weekend is Surrender.  I think this means that I am supposed to just follow my heart around the 2010 Indy Fringe Theatre Festival this year, not necessarily follow my carefully-plotted out viewing plan.  It was fun to make that plan, but I’ll see what I am meant to see.

This is a good time to remind myself (and you) that latecomers are not admitted to IndyFringe shows, so clock-awareness is still important even when in Surrender mode.

The other thing that I have been thinking about for this year’s Fringe here in Indianapolis is my approach to “covering” it.  Part of surrendering to What Is is surrendering to the fact that a)  my main gig, my day job, is being a professional librarian in a public library and b) I love my day job.  Part of my day job…well, almost all of it, really, requires creativity, training, experience, skill, and talent, but at the end of the day it is not about making art but rather about enjoying, evaluating, and sharing art and information with other people.

Sound familiar?

So…I’m thinking that I will approach blogging about this year’s IndyFringe as a readers’ advisory librarian. 

Continue reading Lie-Berry Goes to the 2010 Indy Fringe Festival…and Beyond

Curiosity Girl Goes to the 2010 Indy Fringe

I am back from my summer sabbatical.  Did you miss me?  I missed you.

I spent last evening tentatively plotting out what I’m going to see for the first five days of the 10-day 2010 Indy Fringe Theatre Festival.  If you plotted out your Fringe weeks ago, you might want to double-check the shows and schedules on the Indy Fringe website (www.indyfringe.org) because there have been some last-minute changes.

I love the Indy Fringe.  In 2007, I received my first media pass ever to help cover the Fringe for Indiana Auditions.  Now I receive media passes year-round from all of the professional theatres in town to review shows for Indy Theatre Habit, but I will always have a soft spot in my heart for the Fringe.

It is just such a great week!  As an actor friend once said, “It’s like summer camp for theatre people.”  He meant theatre artists, but it applies to theatre fans, too.  I love being in the midst of a wealth of creative risk-takers that have gathered from all over the planet (okay, from all over the USA plus, this year, Australia and Canada) to let us share their adventures in performance art.

And at the Indy Fringe, you can easily walk between the six venues.  This is not true of, say, the much larger New York City Fringe, or the original Fringe Festival in Edinburgh, Scotland.

Also, you don’t have to plot out anything if you don’t want to.  Part of the fun of “fringing” is just going to whatever show strikes your fancy in the moment.

The Opening Night Carnival (also known as the preview night party) is tonight, Thursday, August 19, 2010 from 5:30-10pm in a big tent on Massachusetts Avenue in downtown Indy, next to the Indianapolis Historic Fire Museum and Memorial, near the intersection of Mass. Ave. and College Ave.  I am sad that I won’t be able to attend the preview party this year.  It is a great way to “taste” the various shows.

The party is free if you go ahead and buy your $5 Fringe Backer Button, which you will need anyway during the festival.  You buy one Fringe Backer Button for $5 and then wear it the whole week.  That $5 goes to the IndyFringe organization to help cover administrative costs.  You show your Backer Button and pay $10 per show, and that money goes directly into the performer’s pockets after each performance.

I am curious about EACH of the 48 Indy Fringe shows this year, but even if it were possible to see all 48, I know I wouldn’t have the stamina.  I have plotted out 26 to take me through Wednesday.  After that, we’ll see.

Let the Fringing begin!

Hope Baugh – www.IndyTheatreHabit.com and www.twitter.com/IndyTheatre

P.S. – Photo above is called “Fringe Scarf” and was taken by Inger Maaike.


Dear Indy Theatre Habit readers,

How are you?  I am having a wonderful time on my summer sabbatical.  I am learning a lot about small business ownership, website design, and theatre journalism.  Mostly I am learning that I have an overwhelming amount to learn about all of this before I can take Indy Theatre Habit from being a solo blog to being on online magazine with a paid staff and paid advertising.

But it’s good to have a goal, right?  In September I will return to writing reviews of live theatre and storytelling shows in the Indianapolis area for this blog.  I am also going to just keep plugging along on my part-time learning path – and continue to save money to pay for the consultants, designers, and equipment I want!  I will also continue to trust that everything will work out for the best in its own best time.  I still love my fulltime+ day job, too, so maybe running an online magazine will be what I do when I retire from that a few years from now.

In the meantime, here is some news and gossip that I have been saving in my “for the postcard” file:

Continue reading Postcard