The world's first Fringe festival, the Edinburgh Fringe festival, was founded in 1947. There are over 250 Fringe festivals around the world. The Fringes profile their extensive and experimental offering of performing arts. The purpose of Fringe festivals is to serve as a platform for performances; they do not, usually, produce performances themselves.
FINFRINGE ry. was officially established on March 11, 2018. Preparations for the first FINFRINGE festival had started a couple of years prior. We got to know the Fringe movement by working and attending various Fringe festivals in Europe and North America. We wanted to bring to Finland an international festival format presenting new ideas for performing arts and to serve as a platform for performing arts cooperation in the Turku region. From the very beginning, we have worked closely with the professional stages and other regional actors in Turku. FINFRINGE has 11 members and a four-person board. Dozens of volunteers are also involved during the festival.
The first FINFRINGE was in Turku from May 10th to 12th, 2019. Four stages featured 24 different performances from nine countries. The performances were selected from over 150 applicants. The FFOFF programme spread to the center of Turku. The festival had 2406 spectators.
In 2019, we awarded 7 FINFRINGE Awards. The awards, made from old CDs, went to the following performances:
• Visit Turku Award: Fatal Instrument Show (Finland)
• Nordic Fringe Network Award: My Voices Have Tourettes (Iceland)
• Artists Choice Award: My Voices Have Tourettes (Iceland)
• Audience Choice: Ebola the Musical (Finland)
• Contemporary Shark: (Some)body (Russia)
• Green Shark: Rakkaudesta – sanasto tuleville vuosikymmenille (Finland)
• Smile Shark: Rebecka Vilhonen (artist host)