32nd Orlando Fringe Festival breaks records with ‘big return’

Fringe officials also announce 3 theatre companies selected to produce shows at new downtown space

Attendees at the 32nd annual Orlando Fringe Festival enjoyed live music from artists on the Outdoor Stage. (Orlando Fringe Festival)

ORLANDO, Fla. – Loch Haven Park felt a bit emptier Tuesday without the 1,600 artists, over 120 shows and more than 67,000 attendees that gathered for this year’s Orlando Fringe Festival.

For its 32nd year, Orlando Fringe welcomed performers and audience members from near and far to “The Festival Beautiful,” which featured every genre of art and theater imaginable over a 14-day period.

Attendees enjoyed the return of fan favorites and an onslaught of newcomers to the tune of 43,428 tickets paid to the Fringe artists. They sipped on beverages in the Beer Tent and cabanas, listened to live music on the lawn, volleyed from venue to venue using the complimentary shuttle service and were among the first crowds to see shows in the new Fringe ArtSpace downtown.

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Over 5,300 parents and children attended Kids Fringe at the Orlando Garden Club in 2023. (Orlando Fringe Festival)

A record-breaking 614 art pieces were sold at Visual Fringe and over 5,300 families attended the two weekends of Kids Fringe at the Orlando Garden Club.

“We are beyond thrilled to celebrate our big return this year,” Orlando Fringe Executive Director Alauna Friskics and Festival Producer Tempestt Halstead said in a joint statement. “Though we returned to the in-person festival the last two years coming out of the global pandemic, this year we truly felt the positive impacts more of the community coming back together to really enjoy and experience everything that is uniquely Fringe. We are proud to be the longest-running Fringe in the US, to unite local, national and international artists within our beautiful community and to create this uniquely diverse arts experience each year. We are also extremely grateful to all of our generous partners and sponsors, especially our presenting sponsor City Beverages, who helped make this year’s festival one of our best to date!”

The 2023 Orlando Fringe Festival featured over 120 shows. (Orlando Fringe Festival)

During the closing ceremonies for the festival, Orlando Fringe officials also announced the selection of the three rising arts companies that will take part in the inaugural season of the Fringe ArtSpace’s incubator program alongside the William Daniel Mills Theatre Company.

Open Scene, Sonflower Joy Music and Without Fear Theatre will participate in “The Collective,” an initiative to help emerging and established arts companies alike grow through an educational 18-month program after which these organizations will put on two full-run productions at the Orlando Fringe’s year-round venue located on Church Street.

Each of the recipients will receive up to $20,000 to produce their shows and attend sessions by spring 2024, as well as over $35,000 sponsored by the Downtown Development Board.

For more information on Fringe’s new downtown space, click here. Learn more about the Orlando Fringe Festival on its website.

At Visual Fringe, a record-breaking 614 art pieces were sold in 2023. (Orlando Fringe Festival)

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