Digital Toronto Fringe Festival Starts Today

Image with MoT logo and Digital Toronto Fringe Logo showing MoT reviews Toronto Fringe
Today is the day many of you have been waiting for: the Digital Toronto Fringe Festival launch.

As with so many things these days, Fringe looks a little different this year. Not just the festival itself, but the Mooney on Theatre coverage too.

Mooney on Theatre coverage of Digital Toronto Fringe

Our editor extraordinaire Samantha Wu is co-ordinating our Fringe coverage this year. She’s working with a team of editors and writers to bring readers reviews of what is on offer from the festival.

MoT’s team of volunteers is taking time to respect the toll the pandemic has taken on all of us. We are focusing on bringing readers quality content without burning out our writers and editors.

It means this year won’t be filled with the usual all-night writing and editing sessions. It also means that, for the first time in 10 years, MoT won’t be covering every show at the festival.

But don’t worry, there will still be plenty of reviews. We’ll be sure to give you a flavour of what to expect from the festival.

How the Digital Toronto Fringe Festival Works

This year Fringe shows are split into two streams – “On-Demand” and Primetime. In addition, other festival standbys like the FringeKids club and POSTSCRIPT have moved to the virtual realm.

Toronto Fringe On-Demand

On-Demand offerings are pre-recorded pieces. They are all accessed through a single $5 pass. These funds go to the Fringe organization to help pay for the festival’s logistics. For each piece, it is then a Pay-What-You-Can (PWYC) fee that goes directly to all the artists involved in the production.

Toronto Fringe Primetime

Primetime performances are live and broadcast at specific times. There are three of these pieces in the festival; all play contest winners. They are from: the Digital New Play Contest My Korean Canadian Friend; the Digital Adams Prize for Musical Theatre As You Lay Sleeping; and the Digital 24 Hour Playwriting Contest Empty.

The digital theatre experiences including pre- and post-show lobby chats and social time for those who wish to partake.  Tickets are $13 per show.

Free offerings at the Toronto Digital Fringe Festival

The perennial favourite, POSTSCRIPT (or ‘the Fringe Tent’ if you still call it that because your brain has difficulty remembering new things… *ahem* me *ahem*) can’t happen this year, for obvious reasons. But fear not. Toronto Fringe doesn’t want you to miss out on the experience of gathering with peers and enjoying free culture and entertainment.

A virtual POSTSCRIPT has been set up. Here you can experience free performances and connect with different folks. Tonight, Friday, it’s a live-streamed comedy and then an online opening party. The virtual patio is available for free live streamed fun and community building each night from 9-11pm ET.

Toronto Fringe Kidsfest

Digital Fringe hasn’t forgotten the kids. Six shows in the FringeKids section of the On-Demand stream are created specifically with kids (and their grown-ups) in mind. These can also be accessed with your $5 pass and work with the same PWYC principle.

And, as much as the grown-ups will be missing POSTSCRIPT, Fringe knows that kids will be missing the KidsFest Club, so that’s gone online too. Check out the Digital KidsFest Hub for free activities, crafts, games, contests and more.

So, take a moment to explore the Toronto Fringe site and plan out your viewing. The Toronto Digital Fringe Festival runs from July 21-31, 2021. There are 65+ shows to chose from in this “fringe where you are” festival.

  • Digital Toronto Fringe Festival runs from July 21-31, 2021
  • On-Demand shows – A single $5 membership gives initial access to all On-Demand shows, which are then Pay-What-You-Can per show (suggested $13) – no specific showtimes for these. Watch at your leisure until July 31
  • Primetime shows are $13 – showtimes are as listed on the Fringe site
  • POSTSCRIPT live(stream) – Free
  • Tickets and memberships are available online at the Fringe Website
  • Accessibility notes:
    • On-Demand shows: videos are closed captioned, transcripts are available for all audio content, documents are screen-reader friendly, and all digital images are provided with alternative text descriptions. These access supplements have been generated by the company and reviewed by the Festival. They may vary slightly from company to company.
    • Fringe Primetime presentations will feature Auto-Transcribed Captioning.