Welcome from Executive Director Lee-Anne Poole
As we come together to celebrate being able to come together again, I would like to begin by acknowledging that we are in Mi’kma’ki, the ancestral and unceded territory of the Mi’kmaq People. And to acknowledge that those of us who are settlers benefit from their land: as settlers in K’jipuktuk, as well as fringe theatre as a movement originating from Edinburgh 70+ years ago.
I’m writing today from my apartment/office (that I can’t afford). It’s on the market. The listing boasts that ‘Not only is it cash-flow positive’ but goes on to say, ‘Get your imagination going on the possibilities or upgrade the units to reach their full market potential.’ I’m scared about finding a new apartment. The housing crisis has been… cont here.
Welcome from Board Chair April Hubbard
I am excited to welcome you to the Halifax Fringe Festival to gather and to begin healing after a difficult year! This festival takes place in Mi’kma’ki, the traditional, unceded territory of the Mi’kmaw people, the caretakers of this beautiful land. I ask that each of us reflect on the role we play in these colonial, capitalist, racist and ableist systems designed to measure validity and erase identities.
For years I was told that my body was unacceptable on Nova Scotian stages because of my Disabilities. This taught me to recognize who is missing from our arts organizations, behind the scenes, in our audiences and on stage. I take great pride in my team’s dedication to ensuring that Fringe is a space where everyone is… cont here.
Welcome from Poet Laureate Sue Goyette
As we come together to celebrate being able to come together again, I would like to How delectable it is to sit together again and become the many-handed creature that knows when our hands should meet and percuss in agreement, in gratitude, in sonic appreciation for a moment of awe or surprise, for the effort, for the verve. To be the many-eared creature that hears inventive, surprising, moving, bold, unexpected, audacious words coming from a stage directed at us. My dictionary tells me the word audience originates from Old French, from Latin audientia, from audire ‘hear’ and I want the word together to be linked to that hearing for how it is a collective listening and that it is listening with everything we’ve got. We’ve been keeping our breathing close and isolated and… cont here.
Welcome from MLA Susan Leblanc
When I think of my favourite fringe experiences, I remember plays made by friends, performed in strange and unusual places – Levitate Me by Graeme Gillis and Robert Plowman presented in the derelict Paramount theatre on Barrington St.; Ariadne directed by Alex McLean presented in an abandoned store in Scotia Square; Gina is Dead by Teatime Creative which travelled around the North End, using old parking lots and backyards as its stage. One of the best parts about Fringe is that it can happen anywhere and everywhere by anyone and everyone.
Of course, this kind of theatrical exploration can only happen when there are stable, accessible and well-supported art spaces to provide a bedrock for the creative community. I am proud… cont here.
Welcome from Councillor Lindell Smith
Having the incredible opportunity to work on the award winning show Once: Africville Stories during the 25th Fringe Festival, I experienced first-hand the positive impact that Halifax Fringe has on our community, venues, and its participants. Any performance offered by this festival is sure to create an experience that will keep you on the edge of your seat, provide insight into any number of interesting and challenging subjects, and evoke feelings and emotions that will stay with you long after the curtain falls. Whichever performance you attend, Halifax Fringe always delivers an amazing experience.
It has been a particularly difficult last two years for Nova Scotians and our artistic community as we deal with the impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic. It is my sincere hope that both new audience members and devoted “Fringers” alike will take in as many shows… cont here.