RIT offerings at this year’s KeyBank Rochester Fringe Festival
More than 425 eclectic performances and displays planned Sept. 14-25 in Rochester
Luane Davis Haggerty
Rochester Institute of Technology students, faculty, and staff will contribute music, dance, comedy, poetry, photojournalism, and more during the 10th Annual KeyBank Rochester Fringe Festival, which begins Tuesday and continues through Sept. 25 in downtown Rochester.
More than 425 eclectic performances, 55 which will be online, are planned during the 12-day festival. More than 120 of the festival events are free, including all of the 24 RIT performances and exhibits, most of which will be held at Little Theatre #1, 240 East Ave.
Free shuttlebus service to and from campus is being provided for RIT students wanting to attend the weekend events at the festival.
RIT also is a major educational sponsor of the community collaborative event. The festival is a celebration of the performing and visual arts in more than 24 venues in downtown Rochester, featuring world-renowned performers as well as up-and-comers.
In 2020, the festival was held virtually due to the pandemic, with 170 performances.
This year, all performers, participants, staff, volunteers, and festival-goers 12 years of age and older will be required to show proof that they are fully vaccinated in order to attend indoor performances and events during the festival. Vaccine status will be checked at the doors to indoor venues.
Rochester’s Fringe Festival is the largest multi-genre arts festival in New York state and is renowned among the world’s more than 200 fringe festivals for its large-scale, outdoor, free-to-the-public performances.
“Nancy and I look forward to seeing the creative talents found in our campus community shared with the greater Rochester community,” said RIT President David Munson. “This festival, which embraces creativity in all forms, helps us showcase the variety of talent we have at RIT, and we’re proud RIT has supported Rochester’s Fringe Festival since its inception.”
“For a decade now, RIT students, faculty, and staff have been able to share their talents with the Rochester community,” said Lynn Rowoth, associate vice president for community relations and special events. “We’re grateful the Fringe festival provides the opportunity to bring people together to enjoy the arts in a wide range of venues.”.”
Learn more about the RIT offerings at this year’s Fringe Festival (* denotes interpreted):
- A Cappella Showcase: Eight Beat Measure and Encore A Cappella, two of RIT’s a cappella groups join for a half hour of vocal music, performing songs spanning several decades.
- A Cappella Showcase: RIT Brick City Singers and Kaminari, two of RIT’s a cappella groups join for a half hour of vocal music, with Kaminari specializing in songs from Japan.
- Anna and Adrian, students Anna McClanahan and Adrian Placencia sing songs from various musicals.
- Bill Dresnack: Original Songs by and for Bill and Other Strange Minds, performing original songs on harmonica and guitar.
- *Chickens are Loose in The Little Theatre, three original comedy skits by student group Fowl Play.
- FEELS: A Global Emotions Visualizer, at RIT City Space, 280 E. Main St. FEELS gathers and visualizes emotional data from a Twitter API and manifests it as a viewer-interactive and digital sculpture installation.
- *Fred Michael Beam and Friends, features Beam, who is a professional actor, dancer, choreographer, director, and producer who happens to be deaf. The goal of his performance is to bridge the deaf and hearing communities through arts and provide accessibility to deaf culture and American Sign Language.
- Howie Lester & Benny Bleu: The Stolen Song: Music and Story from Around the World, music and stories of wild imagining from around the world, with the Intergalactic Kazoo Orchestra, root music, and Himalayan-Appalachian fusion.
- *Into the Light, a celebration of coming out of the darkness of the COVID-19 quarantine and back into the light of live performance. Dangerous Signs provide song and dance, poetry, humor and monologues signed and sung to celebrate live performance, togetherness and community.
- Marigold, In Bloom: A Short Set, featuring the student-run, student-led rock band Marigold, which prides itself on their funky, unique sound and dedication to using music to bring people together.
- *Mental Graffiti and Signatures Showcase, poetry by students who will share original poems and favorite pieces.
- Mid-Century Modern Jazz Quartet, jazz music featuring RIT Professor Emeritus Al Biles, Steve Gates, Chuck Dye, and Bruce Goldman.
- *Mobius Squared (work in progress), featuring Sunshine 2.0, traveling theater from RIT’s National Technical Institute for the Deaf. They tell the story of four young people who were hypnotized to travel to a new dimension to save the Earth, while facing their own personal struggles and issues. The performance uses sign-mime, dance, gestures, American Sign Language poetry, songs and storytelling. Presented in ASL and spoken language.
- Out of Sync: “Colorform,” from alumnus Chuck Miller, a live experience that combines abstract art, avant-garde film, and experimental music into the realm of live performance.
- Piya se Naina: A Semi-Classical Indian Dance Recital, by student Namrata Nagar. The performance will feature three universal languages: music, dance, and love. Based on the poetry of 13-century Sufi St. Hazmat Amir Kusro, the song is about a lady’s dare and joy in meeting her lover.
- *RIT Improv Presents, performing troupes crack jokes and create characters on the spot.
- RIT Photojournalism: Documentary Shorts, featuring a selection of cinematic documentary short stories created by photojournalism students from RIT’s School of Photographic Arts and Sciences.
- *RIT Players: 20 Neo-Futurist Plays from Too Much Light Makes the Baby Go Blind, featuring a collection of two-minute plays performed in random order with an interactive audience.
- RIT Steel Band Ensemble, students performing calypso, socas, and more.
- RIT Surround Sound, an all-male a cappella group specializing in barbershop music.
- Sarah Kinard and Joshua Enck, in RIT City Space, 280 E. Main St., two solo exhibitions featuring contemporary printmaking and sculpture.
- Taiko: Japanese Drumming Performance, combined with dancing performed by RIT students in the area’s only Taiko group.
- *Thomas Warfield & Friends: Technology and the Creative Journey, featuring Warfield, who is RIT’s director of dance and a well-known community activist. This performance blends music, dance, spoken word, and technology, into a creative mosaic to explore human connections and expressions of creativity.
- Velocity Showcase, a student-run urban dance crew at RIT, members of Velocity aim to foster a positive and supportive environment to express themselves, and to inspire and share their passion for dance with others.
For a complete schedule of RIT Fringe events (and notations on interpreted performances) as well as the shuttle schedule and map to and from RIT, go to RIT's Fringe Festival website or contact RIT Assistant Vice President of Special Events Lynn Rowoth at 585-475-7408 or firstname.lastname@example.org.