Perform With Us


 Applications are now live! Apply now for the 2018 Festival!

Application Here

1. Select the Chicago Fringe Festival 2018 from the list of festivals you can apply for in Eventotron.
2. If you do not have an Eventotron account, you will need to create one. Once you’re logged in, you can start completing the application.
3. Complete the 2018 Chicago Fringe application.
4. Sit back and wait for further instructions on our Lottery Party!


General Fringe Performance Information

So, you are thinking of performing in the Chicago Fringe Festival? Great! We would love to have YOU come and play with us. Yes, YOU! First, we’d like to give you an idea of what to expect.

Real Talk 1:

The Chicago Fringe Festival is an emerging, small festival, which takes place in a Northwest neighborhood of Chicago called Jefferson Park. There are very good transportation options so you can experience the fun of the CTA. Our venues typically seat around 35-70 patrons. They are often alternative spaces without the benefit of advanced lighting and sound. Sometimes they are hot. Our average payout is $650. How can we best say it? We’re fringey.

Real Talk 2:

Our artists have fun at Chicago Fringe. You are never just a number at our festival. CFF excels at creating a pop-up community of artists, patrons, and volunteers. With unlimited rush comps to other shows, you will have the opportunity to see lots and lots of other artist’s shows. You will have the chance to present your piece and get great feedback. You will meet new friends and see something that might alter your perspective.

In conclusion:

If you are coming to CFF in order to make a bunch of money or attract a crowd of hundreds, we simply can’t guarantee that. (Though we are working on it! You could be one of the standout 2018 shows that brings in those crowds!) Consider applying to CFF if you are ready to spend some days in early September in beautiful Chicago learning about your craft, meeting incredible people, and having an unforgettable time.


Apply To Perform At The Fringe

Performance Lottery

100% of our participants will be selected by lottery at a public event in March. We will select 50% local shows and 50% non-local shows. Sub-lotteries will be used to select two Kids Fringe shows and to guarantee that at least 25% of the line-up is diverse. Any artists not selected through the lottery will then go on a waiting list. Many, many artists come off of the waiting list. May the odds be ever in your favor!

The Lottery Fee is $25. A sample of the application is available for your reference:

Venue Selection

Depending on availability of venues, we plan to offer a “large venue” option for our performers (up to 99 seats). An additional $100 fee will guarantee you a venue with extra seating capacity however these slots will be filled on a first-come, first-served basis following the Lottery. These slots are not available for dance shows or KIDS FRINGE participants as those have special needs which are better addressed in different venues. In 2018 our participant fee rates are:

  • 3 performances small venue ($250)
  • 3 performances large venue ($350)
  • 4 performances small venue ($350)*
  • 4 performances large venue ($450)*

Important Info

What is the Chicago Fringe Festival?

The Chicago Fringe Festival is a not-for-profit organization that produces an annual festival. The festival consists of performances from individuals and groups over the course of 5 days. In 2018, we will accept 24 performance groups.

When is the Chicago Fringe Festival?

The Chicago Fringe Festival takes place on Labor Day weekend with a Preview Party on Thursday, August 30 and performances on Friday, August 31 – Monday, September 3. The technical rehearsals will take place in the days leading up to the festival. Each company will have one three-hour tech rehearsal.

When can I apply to perform?

Now! The application is live at this link: The deadline to submit is March 4 at 11:59pm.

Requirements to perform

There are two considerations for your piece to qualify for the festival:

  • Piece must be 80% choreographed or scripted. No solely improvisational shows are permitted.
  • Piece must be 45-60 minutes in length and able to be set up and struck within 10 minutes. KIDS FRINGE pieces should be 30-50 minutes in length and set up and strike times remain 10 minutes.

Deadline and Timeline

The deadline to apply for the Chicago Fringe Festival is March 4 at 11:59pm. The shows that are selected will be contacted by email in the following week. Shows that are not selected will be put on the waiting list and also notified by email. Shows that are selected will need to pay a participation fee of $250 – $450 and complete the participation packet by April. Failure to submit payment and paperwork by that date will result in forfeiture of a participant slot. Budget accordingly.

What benefits do I receive from the festival?

  • Participants will have three or four performances over the course of the festival. They will automatically be included in the CFF printed program, receive high visibility on the CFF website and general visibility throughout CFF marketing.
  • Automatic inclusion in the CFF printed program, high visibility on the CFF website and general visibility throughout CFF marketing.
  • Full box office services and a booth operator to run lights and/or sound.
  • Assistance in securing free or discounted arrangements (for those who need lodging).
  • Rush passes to view other works in the festival.
  • 100% of the net box office revenue for their shows.