PHX:fringe to Go Indiegogo; Oct. 12 Benefit Set

PHX Fringe

PHX FringeNot that we want to brag, but what the heck, we’re going to brag. Since the CFR returned from hiatus at the end of June, the volume of artists and colleagues who have reached out, asking for help in promoting events and fundraisers, are enough to make your head spin. We’re not opposed to helping — we’d help everyone if we could. But until such time as we’re more, uh, Mitt Romney-like in our coffers, we must be careful with our time and words. (Is this wise? Good question. One day, we may want to fundraise as well, and then we’ll have to ask for assistance from every single one of you.)

Today, we are making an exception in honor of the Phoenix Fringe Festival — or, as it is branded, PHX:fringe. The other day, we were emailed by the ever-intrepid Linda Essig, who not only authors the superlative blog Creative Infrastructure and runs the Pave Program in Arts Entrepreneurship at Arizona State University but co-edits the program’s journal, Artivate (the CFR’s founding editor, Leonard Jacobs, sits on Artivate’s editorial team).

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In her email, Essig disclosed that she has been involved in PHX:fringe since its inception and is a member of its board of directors. As she notes in this post, the festival has grown but now, economic times being what they are, it is time for that growth to be matched by funding worthy of its ambitious vision. And so Essig, a CFR supporter, wondered if we could help. We said yes.

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If you’re anywhere near Phoenix, block out Oct. 12 on your calendar for a important fundraiser for PHX:fringe. And if you’re asking yourself, “Why this Fringe as opposed to every other Fringe?” we’re not meaning to pit anyone against anyone else (and this isn’t Passover). We simply admire Linda’s work and anyone that she’s supporting is a good enough recommendation for us.

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Here’s a little information on PHX:fringe and what is going on right now:

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PHX:fringe festival was founded in 2008 by a group of artists and producers with a shared vision for the importance of small-venue, live performance in downtown Phoenix, AZ. PHX:fringe strives to be the link between artist and audience. We create structure and space for emerging and established artists to make great work and share it with the community. In our first five years, PHX:fringe has hosted five multi-venue theatre festivals featuring local, national, and international performing artists. We’ve engaged thousands of audience members and collaborated with performance venues across the downtown Phoenix area. PHX:fringe was named Best Theatre Festival by the 2011 Phoenix New Times Best in Phoenix Awards.

Now, five years in, we’re at a crossroads. In order for PHX:fringe to continue, we need to grow into a truly sustainable arts organization. We are re-thinking everything about the festival, about what PHX:fringe is and should be in the Phoenix community. We’re finding our new edge of experimentation, of great art, of pushing the limits, of creating an inclusive, high-quality, totally crazy theatre and performance festival.

PHX: fringe is undergoing a significant shift in vision and organizational structure over the next year. We are:

  • Moving the festival from March to October.
  • Developing programming that creates space for exciting performative artistry year-round in Phoenix through a series of performance events that take place outside the festival calendar. (Stay tuned for our first project in January 2013!)
  • Building PHX:fringe into a sustainable arts organization that truly supports and creates space for artists to make great work.
  • Envisioning and implementing a strategic plan that makes PHX:fringe accessible to artists and audiences across our community and beyond.
  • Debuting a BRAND NEW, totally re-imagined, PHX:fringe festival in October 2013.

In order for PHX:fringe to make this transition successfully, we need to raise $5,000. We’re in the middle of an indie gogo campaign to raise $5,000 by October 12th. Then, on October 12th we’re holding a HUGE party to kickoff the new vision for the organization.

If you care about creating and sustaining spaces for artists to create and present new, innovative, risky theatre, we need you to be in the room with us on October 12th, in spirit or in person. We’d love it if you would reach out to your friends, colleagues, and conspirators to invite them to show up too- PHX:fringe needs to exist. The work that fringe artists are making is a vital part of a vibrant arts community. Here is the link to the indie gogo page, where you can buy tickets for the event, or make any size contribution to the campaign. Every dollar helps.

Again, visit and give if you can.

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