And, curtain. The Ottawa Fringe Festival for 2012 is now over.
Trouble with the video? Watch directly on YouTube.
On day 11, we had some great long chats with Executive Producer of the Ottawa Fringe Festival, Natalie Joy Quesnel, and local superstar and creator of one of this year’s hit shows, Ken Godmere. Both were incredibly interesting and will be something worth watching, but both chats round out at about eighteen minutes so there’s three videos coming out of it: the day 11 Life at Fringe video, and then a feature video interview with each of them.
Day 11 was three final shows for me. Lonely Bear, which was odd and kind of a downer, and Hard Times, which had wonderful music but was even more depressing than Lonely Bear. Add that to the rain that had thus far stayed clear of Fringe, and I was really worried for it would be an all round depressing curtain call for the fest. Fortunately, Breaking Rank was funny and very interesting, so I got to end on a high note. My total shows this year rounded out at 32 — I was actually tempted to stop at 31 because that was my media pass number and that would have amused me, but I’m glad I decided to catch Breaking Rank. In the end I’d wanted to beat my 2011 record of twenty-seven shows and I managed to do that, so I’m happy.
Kurt, I will say Fringed-harder than anybody I know, tallying up 43 shows when all was said and done, closing his night with Vernus says SURPRISE! during the best of venue performance. Good on him for fully embracing the experience.
When I got home, I was surprised how quickly my body told me, “All right, you’ve had your fun, time to rest. Now.” All the energy that had kept me going just bled away and I was exhausted and drained. I’m guessing that either today or over the next little while, that’s going to be the experience of a lot of artists and those deeply involved with the festival.
This week, the rest of the coverage will go online – including the video for this day eleven recap, those feature conversations, a Life at Fringe wrap-up where I vlog with Matthew and Kurt about their Fringe experience.
To close, this one off, I’m going to say thank you to all the artists who put shows on this year. Whether the houses were big or small, it takes an enormous amount of work to get a show off the ground, and everybody deserves kudos just for getting out there and doing it. To those touring, I wish you all the best possible success. To those national and international artists, I hope Ottawa made you feel at home and hope that you come back soon. To the volunteers and the staff of Fringe — aka, the often unsung heroes of the fest — thanks for a great festival this year! Your tireless work doesn’t go unnoticed.