The NY International Fringe Festival was founded in 1997 by four Lower East Side artists. The festival quickly took root in the LES each year in the dog days of August by presenting 200 shows in 20 venues over 16 days. With an average of 7 performances each, that’s over 1400 performances in 16 days.
Heading into year 20, the festival has gone from those crazy kids downtown presenting avant-garde theater to an institution of NYC’s cultural scene.
Began by artists, driven by dedicated leadership and fueled by a die-hard corps of volunteers, the festival has overcome the obstacles of art in the big city, the frenzy of over a thousand artists participating each year, and natural disasters.