Getting Your Fringe On: A Fierce & Focused Guide to FringeNYC 2016

North America’s biggest, boldest and wildest annual multi-arts festival, The New York International Fringe Festival (FringeNYC), is ready to launch its 20th seasona very big deal for the close to 200 theatre and dance companies on this year’s schedule and an even bigger deal for anyone on the lookout for one of the Big Apple’s primo theatre must-do events!

And did I mention: FringeNYC is a big fat bargain...even more so when you enter the fray armed. With this in mind, we've put together the ultimate cut-to-the-chase tip list for maximizing your personal bang for your Fringe bucks! The 2016 Fringe Festival runs from August 12 through August 28.

fringe nyc 2016 FLIGHT

Flight, photo by Shannon Schnittker. Pictured: Ezra LeBank, Cynthia Price, and Taylor Casas.

Major Fringe Immersion? Scoop Up a Pass

The Fiver/5 shows: Your cost: $85, i.e., $17 per ticket

The Flex/10 shows: Your cost: $150, i.e., $15 per ticket

The Lunatic: Your cost: $500, i.e. go ahead and run amok because you’re running on unlimited Fringe power!

How To Do It: Go to Pick your pass & show(s)... within 48 hours you’ll be emailed a redemption code... redeem online ... show up on performance day(s)... done and fun! CG Advice: Act fast (think The Flash).

Go En Masse

Single tickets run $18 each; for groups, tickets run $15 each for 10 and up; $13 each for 20 or more. Do the math & start texting your buds. (Available online only.)

Kids & Seniors

Children under 12 and adults over 65: $13 bucks (Also online only.)

Find Your FringeNYC Quiz

Designed for Fringe rookies but a fun and handy tool for anyone. After you take a mini BuzzFeed-esque quiz (it only takes about 60 seconds), you’re emailed a list of Fringe shows (I got a list of 11) zeroing in on your personalityand a 10% discount. Newbie Warning: They ask you for your favorite past Fringe show. Just answer Urinetown... it’s the Fringe show that made it to Broadway.

FringePLUS MeetUps

Check it out: there are actual popup FringeLOUNGE locationsrestaurants near Fringe venueswhere you can snack, drink & mingle with fellow theatregoers and Fringe performers (check website for options); plus, if you track down a FringeNYC Ambassador (identifiable by their black-with-electric-green-lettering Fringe T-shirts) and present them with your program, they’ll set you up with a discount for your next Fringe show. Nice.

the coward fringenyc 2016

The Coward: a Madcap Fairytale, photo by Reel Duty. Pictured: Maddy Campbell, Wester Cooley.

Good to Know

1. offers a venue map for directions & a list of Special Events such as FringeJR, FringeAL Fresco and FringeART.

2. Arrive at your venue at least 15 minutes prior to show time.

3. There is absolutely NO LATE SEATING so plan accordingly.

4. You can score your show(s) by logging on to (This site also “shines a spotlight” on the seaons’s key shows, so it’s well-worth a pre-booking look.)

5. The Fringe is a launching pad for both shows and stars. In addition to Tony-nominated Urinetown, FringeNYC is known for the long-running Off-Broadway comedy Matt & Ben (by Mindy Kaling of The Mindy Project) as well as for its actor alumni, including Bradley Cooper, Melissa Rauch (Bernadette on Big Bang Theory), and Michael Urie (Marc St. James on Ugly Betty).

the box show fringenyc

The Box Show, photo by Ann Beyersdorfer. Pictured: Dominique Salerno.

Some Big Buzz & Best Bets for 2016 On the Fringe

The Gorges Motel: Award-winning playwrights and stage & TV actors: End result? A collection of stories unfolding in an upstate motel. (8/13, 17, 20, 24 & 26 @ The Players Theatre)

Homo Sapiens Interruptus: Carlos Dengler, former bass guitarist for Interpol, tracks his life from pizza delivery dude to rock stardom. (8/12. 15, 19, 22 & 25 @ 64E4 UNDERGROUND)

Walken On Sunshine: A filmmaker’s desperate efforts to land Christopher Walken for his upcoming film. (8/13, 16, 20, 22 & 26 @ SoHo Playhouse)

From Foster Care to Fabulous: Humor and heartbreak come together as Patrick Burns shares his past via songs, characters, and jaw-dripping anecdotes. (8/12, 14,18, 23 & 25 @ drom)

Pryor Truth: A one-man show celebrating the life and legend of comic Richard Pryor. (8/13, 18, 22, 25 & 27 @ Under St. Marks)

Love Me Forever Billy H. Tender: Following a sold-out premiere in Toronto, this tragicomedy deals with the cultural pandemic of superstardom. (8/12. 15, 20, 21 & 25 @ Under St. Marks)

Dream Ticket: An election-year political satire in which former lovers find themselves forced to share a run together on a “dream ticket.” (8/12, 14, 18, 21 & 25 @ The Players Theatre)

Thread: A psycho-cyber thriller in which identities unravel as do boundaries between fact & fiction, time & space, Jew & Arab. (8/15, 18, 21, 24, & 26 @ WOW Café)

W.E.B. Du Bois: A Man For All Times FringeNYC

W.E.B. Du Bois: A Man For All Times, photo by Justyn Richardson. Pictured: Brian Richardson.


The 20th Annual New York International Fringe Festival runs in venues throughout New York City from August 12th-28th. For more information, including detailed show guides and performance schedules, visit

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