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Fringe Fest '97 

Wednesday, Sep 3 1997
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How do you start out an event wherein 50 local and international companies stage more than 200 dance, theater, comedy, drama, puppetry, and performance works of 60 minutes or less over a two-week period? With an opening games ceremony, of course. The sixth annual San Francisco Fringe Festival begins Thursday, Sept. 4, at noon in Union Square, with a free "tag team theatrical triathlon" in which participating theater companies have to present an Ethel Merman song, a Shakespeare monologue, and an improv with a prop.

After that warm-up, the Fringe Fest, organized by the Exit Theater, plays out in five venues in the Union Square area through Sunday, Sept. 14, with shows running up to 12 hours plus per day. Content ranges from the sacred to the profane, the dramatic to the absurd. This year's lineup, for example, includes Kaliyuga Arts' musical adaptation of L'Historie de Babar; Elisa DeCarlo's comical, musical solo show Cervix With a Smile; the Thrillpeddlers' experimental meltdown of a bloody Shakespearean tragedy, Mondo Andronicus; and dancer Mari Osanai's solo piece The Sky Dream.

* The fest begins Thursday, Sept. 4, at noon in Union Square.
* Performances run Sept 4 through 14. Shows begin at 7, 8:30, and 10 p.m. weekdays, with an additional show at 11:30 p.m. Fridays. On weekends, shows begin at noon and then every 90 minutes up to 10:30 p.m. There's also a midnight show on Saturdays.

* Shows are at the following venues:
The Exit Theater and Exit Stage Left, both at 156 Eddy (at Mason).
The Geary Studio Theater, 450 Geary (at Powell).
The City Cabaret, 450 Geary (at Powell), lower level.
The Shelton Theater, 533 Sutter (at Powell).

* Maximum ticket price is $8; they are available at the door only. Box offices open 30 minutes before each show.

* Call 673-3847 for details and a complete schedule.

-- Heather Wisner

About The Author

Heather Wisner

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