well, after a brutal hour and a half (brutal for the antici…pation), I did not get into the Toronto Fringe Festival. Neither did I make the waiting list. While this is disappointing from the point of view of getting my play on stage this summer, there are a couple of positive aspects:
1) I don’t have to spend $700 right before Christmas.
2) I have more time to work on the play.
Thinking about it on the way home, it occurred to me that I could submit it as a Bring Your Own Venue (byov). It wouldn’t take too much to turn the play into something site specific. I could see it, for example, in a church (long as they didn’t mind the cussing), or perhaps an alley.
A byov does present some unique challenges, however. Having performed in one last year, I found that we were far to separated from the festival as a whole. There’s a certain comraderie to the regular Fringe venues. You pass by other vast members before and after your show, and there a lot of opportunity for cross promotion. With the byov, it’s just your show in one space, and that means you miss out on a lot of the Fringe experience. The other reason I’d be reluctant to do a byov, is that you have to work that much harder to get an audience. If I was to do the play as a byov, I’d need s real promotions wiz to help me get the word out. Additionally, I’d need to combat my own self sabotaging instincts, and fight the voice (the one that’s there even now) that whispers to me that no one wants to see me perform a one-man show (or at least not enough people to make it worthwhile).
Regardless (self-esteem issues aside) whether to submit the play as a byov will take some careful thought, though I refuse to rule it out completely just yet.