Hollywood Fringe Fest Ferrets Out Outlandish LA

The offbeat to-do is billed as "LA Largest Performing Arts Festival."

It hasn't been all that long since the very recent television pilot season hung up its final costume and turned off the last stage light. You might have participated (fingers crossed you got picked up) or you might know someone who did, but, either way, the season tends to leave one with this message: Everything in a pilot is considered, discussed, and dissected down to its last iota.

That's the nature of the pilot business, of course, but it isn't necessarily Hollywood. Exhibit A? The town's annual Fringe Festival, which prefers to have most of its iotas unexamined. Rather, the fringe fest, like all fringe fests the world over, possesses an air of the spontaneous, of the free-spirited, and, yes, of the freaky.

It opened on Thursday, June 13 and will keep on keepin' on through Sunday, June 30 at various venues around town.

Nope, we're not saying a ton of planning and practice doesn't go into what's billed as "LA's Largest Performing Arts Festival" -- it does and must -- but the people who show up to make comedy and make dance and make funny faces and make opera and make performance art and make audiences guffaw possess an air of loosey-goosey-ness about them. Or at least a sense of daring and fun.

It's the heart of fringe, after all.

But where to start? It all depends on what you want to see. Comedy or tunes? A solo show or something absurd? A group of funny players or someone who can warble a mean aria? 

The venue list is lengthy, but look for mainstays like the Theatre of Note, I.O. West, and Theatre Asylum to be on it.

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And, pilot season, truly, all the love in the world. We aren't picking on you in any way, and we know why you have to go over ever detail a dozen times. Still, a little fringe-style madness could suit your process now and then. Or at least it is there to be embraced rather than feared.

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