Press release: Durham Fringe Festival

Peter J. ( admin)

[received in email]

OSHAWA – Durham Region is pleased to announce that it will be joining the ranks of Toronto, Edmonton, Montreal and New York with its own Fringe Festival starting in the Spring of 2014.

The Durham Fringe Festival will open in Oshawa May 15 to 24, 2014 at select venues throughout the city.

“We’re thrilled that the board of the Canadian Association of Fringe Festivals (CAFF) granted us a franchise,” said Michael Khashmanian, the DFF’s inaugural director. “Toronto’s neighbouring community of theatre-lovers are excited to have this exhilarating celebration of the arts in their own backyard.”

Khashmanian is the president of the Beech Street Theatre Company and founder of the Durham Theatre Festival, which ran for the past four years throughout Durham Region.

“I discovered there was an appetite for theatre in this community,” he said. “More than there were venues to supply it. I’m glad CAFF agreed with me.”

The plan is to launch the first annual Durham Fringe Festival the month before the Toronto Fringe Festival so local and international acts can participate in both festivals.

Some Fringe performers travel the world participating in Fringe Festivals. With the Durham Fringe and the Toronto Fringe so close together in terms of dates and distance, performers will significantly reduce their travel and increase their runs.

“It’s often a long way to come for many performers to participate in just one festival,” said DFF co-director Mark Terry. “The amount of work that goes into every show requires it be mounted as often as possible. The DFF is looking forward to providing those extra dates to these talented performers.”

With opening night nearly a year away, the DFF is starting to prepare with staffing its offices. They are currently looking for board members, support staff and volunteers. If you have experience with theatre, particularly Fringe Festivals, and can work in the Oshawa area, you are asked to send your resume to:

117 Calais Street, Whitby, ON. L1N 5M3.

No phone calls or in-person drop-offs, please.
Tel: 416-899-5855


Canada enjoys more fringe festivals than any other country in the world.  Fringe festivals annually draw local, regional and international performers.  Their shows create a fun-filled atmosphere where affordable and accessible theatre can take place.  Here’s a list of Ontario fringe festivals:
Durham Fringe Festival
May 15 to 24, 2014
Hamilton Fringe Festival
July 18 to July 28, 2013
London Fringe Theatre Festival
June 5 to June 16, 2013
Ottawa Fringe Festival
June 20 to June 30, 2013
The Toronto Fringe
July 3 to July 14, 2013
Windsor International Fringe Festival
2013 TBA

MICHAEL KHASHMANIAN, Durham Fringe Festival Director:

Founder of the Durham Theatre Festival (2009 to 2012) and founder and president of the Beech Street Theatre Company, Michael Khashmanian is one of Canada’s most prolific playwrights. He has been acting, directing and writing plays since 2003. Since writing his first play, Dial ‘M’ for Music in 2006, Michael has written eight plays, all of which have been performed by church or community theatre groups in Durham Region. He has taken Directing l and Directing ll offered by the Stratford Festival in 2010. His latest play, Exposed Treasures, was the inaugural production of Michael’s Beech Street Theatre Company, premiering in Bowmanville, ON in April, 2013.

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