A fringe festival is a performing arts celebration made up of pieces from theater ensembles and individuals outside the mainstream. Small, scrappy theater groups send work to fringe festivals as do artists affiliated with larger, established theaters.
A fringe fest is like a potluck, hosted by In/Visible Theatre. Patrons get to try a variety of new things and like some more than others. It’s in our living room (so to speak), but other people bring the covered dishes (their plays). All you have to do is show up with your fork ($5.00)! The one thing we ask of you is that you try all of the dishes (the plays). We guarantee that they are all tasty in their own ways. Open your palate and get ready to indulge in some delicious art. Metaphorically.
You might see a solo play (piece featuring just one performer) that has been critically acclaimed from its off-Broadway run or a brand new local piece about zoning and land use.
Q. Where is the BOLO Festival?
Good question! We have performances in unexpected locations around downtown Boone, NC, where we’re based. Performances this year are in Neighborhood Yoga, the HOW Space, and 3rd Place.
Q. What kind of performances are
Solo performances. You can have behind-the-scenes help, but there should be just one person on stage.
We don’t do open mic kind of things with one person and her guitar because there are plenty of other venues in Boone that welcome those types of acts. But if you’re an actor, performance artist, dancer, singer-of-your-own-solo-ten-minute-musical, bring it on.
Q. Can I perform?
You can next year! Watch our website for BOLO 2019 applications.
All performances must be memorized and you need to bring your own sets, costumes and props.
Q. Who else is performing?
We have descriptions of shows on our website.
Got friends performing? Great! Come to see their performances but don’t be afraid to try something new and check out shows with interesting descriptions that you know nothing about.
Q. How much are tickets?
$5 per each performance. You will be able to purchase them at the door of the venues. Cash and electronic payments are welcomed.
Q. Is In/Visible Theatre making my solo show happen?
We are presenting your show but you are producing your show. Producing means you’re creating the script or getting the rights to an already existing script and paying for those rights. It means you’re getting your own costumes, props and sets and getting help transporting those to your venue if need be. You, as producer, will also come up with a marketing image and a descriptive blurb for your show.
As presenter, In/Visible Theater will provide you with a venue for your show, include you in our BOLO program and help publicize your show. Your venue will have three In/Visible BOLO volunteers who will take care of setting up audience chairs, ticket sales and other things like that.
Q. Does it cost anything to participate as an artist?
No. We are one of the few fringe festivals with no application fee and no participation fee. You should probably budget for your own transportation costs, lodging and meal costs and possible PR and marketing costs such as boosting social media ads for the event you’ve created for your show.
Q. Will I make any money from this?
That depends on how much you hustle. In/Visible Theatre will split the house for your show: we get half of the ticket sales for your performances, and you get half. We suggest researching how to market your show or contact us for suggestions so that your expenses are covered and you have a little extra to spend on candy from Mast General Store (one of our sponsors this year! Thanks, Mast).
Q. Are these performances appropriate for children?
That varies show by show. Check our listings for ratings.
Q. Can my BOLO show have adult
Sure, just let us know ahead of time! Also, unlike many fringe festivals, we generally prefer you keep your clothes on.
Q. Does my performance have to be original?
No, but you are responsible for getting and paying for any associated rights to your show if it isn’t original.
Q. Wait, this is the end, and I have more questions.
Email us at
We would be more than happy to answer any other questions you might have.