If you’re a performing artist who says they want to see more of the original, more of the off-beat, more risks, and more opportunities on Fresno stages and haven’t applied to be in the Rogue Festival yet, WHY HAVEN’T YOU?
Rogue Festival is a non-curated fringe festival, which means there is no one who decides who gets in, who is good enough, what work is “worthy”, and all of that. Rogue Festival is for anyone with a voice and passion who wants to find an audience. ANYONE. All you need is an idea for a DIY show, the venue and application fees, and the chutzpah to to put yourself out there.
The purpose of a fringe festival is to bring a wide variety of shows and performances – usually fairly short (45-60 minutes) – into the same neighborhood at the same time. Half of the performers are locals and half are performers who travel the fringe circuit. More acts draw more audiences. And audiences who come to see one act will often stay to see more. Everyone benefits. The Rogue Festival is one of those annual events that creates an amazing community of artists and arts-lovers in the Tower District.
The performers submit their applications and application fee ($35) and are then entered into the lottery. Those who get slots are drawn randomly and assigned a venue and showtimes (5 shows for mainstage and 4 shows for cafe slots). Performers pay a venue fee to be in the Festival (usually $175-$575 depending upon the size of the venue and its technical capacity. In exchange, Rogue Festival manages ticket sales, box office, general publicity, crowd control, events, and offer many other amenities to the performers.
Most performers can make back that money because they receive 100% of the ticket sales for their shows. With a good show and a lot of promo cards handed out, most performers make their fees back and many of those make a profit. But the Rogue is also about testing out new material, getting experience performing, or finding new audiences and fans for your group.
The application window closes October 12th, but don’t worry so much if you don’t have a clear plan for a show right this moment. Acts who are chosen have until Oct 28th to pay their venue fees or drop out. Also, chosen acts have until the middle of November before their final show information is required, so you have a month to hammer out a plan!
So I say if you are a local writer, singer, actor, storyteller, performer of any stripe: get your application in this week and take a chance! You’ll learn a lot about how to craft your own art, reach your own audience, and all of the possibilities of steering your own ship with an amazing community of people.
Contact for questions regarding applications: firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have questions for me regarding my past experience with Rogue (former performer, publicist, and executive director), feel free to hit me up in the comments or on my Facebook posts here or here.
Tips and Info:
What you need to apply:
- Contact Information – the individual contact for the act: name, email, phone number, addresses. This information will be used throughout the festival, so please be certain it is correct.
- Company or Artist Name – the name of the performer or group as it is to appear in the program.
- Working Title of Show – This can be the final title or a temporary title.
- Show Genre – Theater, Dance, Music, Spoken Word, Comedy
- Show Rating – G, PG, PG – 13, Adults Only. The anticipated rating for your material.
- Venue Tier – Choose Cafe, Cafe Plus, or Mainstage. Your venue fees will be based on this selection.
- Venue Preference – This is an optional item. If you have a preferred venue, you may indicate it here. There are NO GUARANTEES that you will be assigned your preferred venue.
- Special Performance Requests – Example: preferred time of day for performances, space with a separate backstage, etc. Again, there are NO GUARANTEES that your requests can be met (but they will do their best to take them into consideration!)
- $35 Non-refundable Application Fee– paid by credit card (PayPal also accepted online)
This is preliminary application information. Finalized information on each show will be requested from confirmed Rogue performers in November.
Please note: Rogue Festival can not accommodate acts available for only one weekend.
PREPARING YOUR SHOW:
Rogue Festival requires performers to adapt their work to the limits of the performance areas. We work in storefronts, the backs of coffee shops and bars, art galleries, and in music and dance studios, creating a pop-up performance, DIY attitude. Ambient noise from the street and neighboring businesses is part of the Rogue performance experience. If you can perform here, you can perform anywhere!
It is recommended that shows are kept to a minimum of set up and technical needs. Basic light cues and sound cues are available in the mainstages. Only general lighting and mic/pa is available in the cafes (no light cues available).
All performances begin and end on time. Mainstage performances have a limit of 60 minutes maximum. Cafe and Cafe Plus performances have a limit of 45 minutes.
Performers will have 15 minutes to load in and set up their stage prior to their showtime and 15 minutes to load out after their show ends. Schedules are strictly maintained. Performers are not permitted to mount or attach equipment to the walls of the performances spaces and the entire performance space must be cleaned and cleared of any debris from performances within the 15 minute load out limitation.
MAINSTAGE – usually seats 50-80 and has general lighting wash, one center special, a basic sound system, and a technician supplied. One tech rehearsal provided. FEE: $575. Maximum ticket price: $12. 60 minutes max. Provides 5 performances.
- Dianna’s School of Dance – Seats approximately 80 on risers. Open stage – ballroom floor surrounded by black pipe and drape. Backstage/greenroom area. FEE: $575
- The Revue Cafe – Seats approximately 65 in large back-room of coffee house. 12 x 8 foot stage* on platform, raised 18 inches. Mia Cuppa is a full-service cafe in front of house. No separate backstage or greenroom. Holding area for performers is at the back of the space with the technician. FEE: $575
- VISTA Theater (formerly The Voice Shop) – Seats approximately 70 in intimate storefront theater space. Stage 12 x 8 foot stage* on platform raised 12 inches. Separate backstage/greenroom area. FEE: $575
* (approximate size)
CAFE – usually seats around 40 and has limited or no tech. A general wash of light, a mic and a PA are set up for the performance. No technician, light or sound cues provided. No separate backstage or greenroom area. Maximum ticket price: $7. 45 minutes max. Provides 4 performances.
Spectrum Art Gallery – An open-plan art gallery seating 40. FEE: $175.
Fulton Street Art – A small, storefront art gallery seating 40. Very intimate. FEE: $175.
CAFE PLUS– Veni Vidi Vici! Cafe PLUS offers everything a Cafe offers PLUS a larger seating capacity of 70! The Vini Vidi Vici space is on their outdoor back patio, canopy covered, with cabaret-style seating. Veni Vidi Vici is a full service restaurant and bar inside (use it as a selling point!). FEE: $270. Maximum ticket price: $7. 45 minutes max. Provides 4 performances. Best for comedy or music.
Anyone with an idea and something compelling to communicate is welcome to apply to the 18th Annual Rogue Festival. We strive to present a variety of styles, voices, and points of view from truly independent performers. Your voice is needed, wanted, and we can’t wait to hear what you have to say!
Get the show on the Rogue in 2019! March 1-9, 2019 in Fresno’s Tower District.