® FRINGE and FRINGE FESTIVAL are registered trademarks of The Canadian Association of Fringe Festivals. To be eligible for participation, applications must be received by The Calgary Fringe Festival with the appropriate fees on the corresponding lottery dates. If the show quota has not been met; applications may be received after the deadline at the discretion of the show organizers. Any individual or company is eligible to apply to The Calgary Fringe Festival but only one application can be submitted per individual/company. Every application must have a company name and this name can't be changed once the application has been received. The primary and secondary contacts of a company can't be the contacts for a second company applying to The Festival. If the primary contact (whom we consider to be the show's producer) for a company is unable to continue with the production, The Festival reserves the right to remove the production from The Festival and apply the appropriate withdrawal policy. Companies accepted into The Calgary Fringe Festival cannot sell or transfer their spot in The Festival to another company. If a company/individual is found to be in violation of any of The Festival's application/participation policies the applicant may be removed from the application process or from participant status and may forfeit all or part of the application fee.

Companies that are accepted into the 2017 Calgary Fringe Festival may withdraw from the event and receive a 50% refund of the application fee up to and including March 1, 2017. If a company withdraws from the festival after March 1, 2017, they forfeit 100% of their fees. Those companies on the waiting list may withdraw from the list at any time and receive a full refund of their application fee (minus processing fee). All notices of withdrawal must be made in writing and signed by the primary contact. Application fees are: Indoor Theatre: includes non refundable application fee of $ 35.  Total $700.  

The Calgary Fringe Festival reserves the right to cancel confirmed applications should circumstances arise. In such an event, cancelled participants will be placed at the top of the waiting list or they may withdraw from The Festival and receive a full refund of the application fee.

If The Calgary Fringe Festival or participant performances are delayed, interrupted or prevented by reason of an act of nature, fire, flood, war, public disaster, strikes, labour difficulties, governmental enactment, regulation or order, certified illness, or any other cause beyond The Festival's control, The Festival will not be liable for any loss of revenue or expenses incurred. Please be aware that by signing this application, your company agrees to adhere to the laws of Alberta, the policies, procedures and safety guidelines as set forth by The Calgary Fringe Festival as well as act in the best interest of The Festival at all times. The Festival reserves the right to remove any company or cancel any/all performances of a company that does not abide by the policies of The Festival. Please sign below to indicate you understand and agree to abide by all Fringe policies. If your company is accepted into the 2017 Calgary Fringe Festival, this application will be considered a signed agreement between you and the Festival.

It will then be understood that you will be considered a contract player/performer of the 2017 Calgary Fringe Festival and as a contract player/performer, you are entitled to receive 100 % of the ticket price you set (less applicable taxes, such as GST and with-holding tax).  You are guaranteed six (6) performance slots during the run of the 2016 Calgary Fringe Festival and could potentially make $ 4,860 (based on a 90 seat house and a price of $ 9.00 per seat).  PLEASE NOTE:  this amount is NOT guaranteed.  This is just a projection on how well you could potentially do if you were to sell all 90 seats per performance.

Calgary Fringe Theatre Festival


Table of Contents



  • 1.1 CAFF Governing Regulations
  • 1.2 Fringe Governing Regulations
  • 1.3 Official Fringe Time
  • 1.4 Hours of Operation
  • 1.5 Latecomers
  • 1.6 Re-admittance
  • 1.7 Lost and Stolen Property
  • 1.8 Smoking
  • 1.9 Animals
  • 1.10 Food


  • 2.1 Content Guidelines for Shows
  • 2.2 Application Process
  • * 2.2.1 Indoor Theatre Productions
  • 2.3 General Application Process Rules
  • 2.4 Schedule Changes and Show Cancellations

Section 3: TICKETING

  • 3.1 General Ticket Policies
  • 3.2 Purchasing Tickets
  • 3.3 Frequent Fringe Passes
  • 3.4 Complimentary Tickets


  • 4.1 Code of Conduct
  • 4.2 Drugs


  • 5.1 Pre-Festival Artist Policies
  • 5.2 Policies for the Festival in regard to Technicians and Artists
  • 5.3 Policies for staging and other Technical Support
  • 5.4 Artist Payout Procedures
  • 5.5 Policies specific to Outdoor Artists and Buskers


  • 6.1 Posting of Promotional Materials
  • 6.2 Film and Photography at Indoor Stage Productions

Guidelines and Procedures for Artists Calgary Fringe Festival


This document contains guidelines and procedures for participating in the Calgary Fringe Theatre Festival. Hopefully, the following information will help you gain an understanding of the Festival, and your role as an artist within it. Though it may be hefty, please read it in its entirety to reap the full benefits of its endless wisdom and information-ness.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our Festival Director, Michele Gallant, at (403) 451-9726 or Michele@CalgaryFringe.ca

Section 1: General Guidelines and Procedures

1.1 - CAFF Governing Regulations

  • Artists participating in the Calgary Fringe Festival are selected on a non-juried, first come-first serve or lottery basis, as approved by the Canadian Association of Fringe Festivals (CAFF).
  • One hundred percent of revenue generated by the ticket price set by the artists is returned directly to the artists themselves. This revenue is subject to GST and other applicable taxes.
  • The Festival exerts no control over the artistic content of an Artist's/Company's performances.
  • The Festival provides an easily accessible opportunity for all audiences and artists to participate in the Fringe.

1.2 - Fringe Governing Regulations

  • Latecomers are only admitted entrance to the theatre at an appropriate interval in the performance (such as a blackout), and entirely at the discretion of the FOH manager, and only at specific venues.
  • If patrons leave the venue during a performance, they will not be readmitted.
  • All cellular telephones and the like are to be turned off prior to performance.
  • There are no refunds, unless a performance is cancelled, or otherwise rescheduled due to unforeseen circumstances
  • No line jumping!
  • No animals are permitted into the Fringe venues.
  • No video or recording devices are to be used during performances, unless otherwise authorized by the Artist/Company. The Artist/Company must adhere to the guidelines outlined in section 6.2.
  • Audiences and artists alike are asked to respect Fringe volunteers and staff, as well as the neighbours surrounding the Festival site.

1.3 - Official Fringe Time

The Festival operates on Official Fringe Time, which is set and synchronized by Festival staff. All staff, volunteers, artists, and technicians will set their time-telling devices to Official Fringe Time, as well as clocks at the FOH tables at every venue set to OFT. Performances begin strictly on time. In any dispute over performance start/end time, we shall defer to OFT.

1.4 - Hours of Operation

The festival site is officially open between 11 AM and 11pm. Indoor Theatre Productions run from early afternoon to 12 am on weekends, and late afternoon to midnite on weekdays.

1.5 - Latecomers

Because of the intimate nature of Fringe venues, patrons arriving after the doors of the venue are shut may NOT be admitted. Even patrons with advance tickets will not be admitted. Latecomers will not be provided with a refund. Patrons are advised to arrive 10-20 minutes prior to the performance start time. 

1.6 - Re-admittance

All doors to the venues are locked by the house technician at the start of the performance. If a patron leaves a theatre mid-performance, the patron will not be allowed to re-enter under any circumstances.

1.7 - Lost and Stolen Property

The Festival is not responsible for any items belonging to artists, patrons, vendors, volunteers, or staff that have been lost or stolen.  If you are looking for a lost or stolen item, please check in with the Information Booth on the corner of 9th Ave and 12 Str SE.

1.8 - Smoking

In accordance with City bylaws, smoking is not permitted in any Festival venues. Productions containing on-stage smoking must use herbal cigarettes.

1.9 - Animals

Only service animals are permitted in Festival venues. No other animals are permitted. If an artist wishes to use an animal during a performance, permission must be granted by the Festival.

1.10 - Food

No food or beverages (with the exception of water) are permitted in the indoor venues unless otherwise indicated.

Section 2: Applications and Scheduling

2.1 - Content Guidelines for Shows

There are no content guidelines or restrictions for productions at the Festival, with the exception that:

  • No production/presentation may contravene the laws or City ordinances of Calgary, Alberta, or Canada.
  • The theatre's technicians are responsible for the safety and well-being of the theatre's occupants. If they decide that a performer or patron is being placed at risk, they are authorized to intervene and/or end the performance at any time.

The Festival encourages artists to provide accurate show descriptions. If patron feedback overwhelmingly indicates that a show has been given an inappropriate rating, the Festival reserves the right to alert patrons purchasing tickets of the discrepancy.

2.2 - Application Process

The Calgary Fringe selects participants via a lottery system, based on the following allotment: 40% local productions, 20% national productions, 20% international productions. The application process is subject to change upon annual review, though applications will always be accepted through a non-juried basis.

2.2.1 - Indoor Theatre Productions

We will accept applications from local, national, and international theatre companies, and the selected productions will form the nucleus of the Fringe. The Festival will provide a modestly-equipped theatre venue (40-150 seats), one professional theatre technician, a set number of performance times, full ticketing service, Front of House services, a program listing in the Fringe Guide. Each venue will host six or seven productions per day, and performances are scheduled on a rotating basis.

2.2.4 - Bring Your Own Venue (BYOV) or Venue Boutique Productions

The Calgary Fringe currently offers limited BYOV's opportunities. If you are interested in using a BYOV, please contact the Festival Director to discuss options.

2.3 - General Application Process Regulations

  • The Calgary Fringe Festival will accept Indoor Theatre Productions from International, National, and Local applicants. These shows form the core activity of the Festival.
  • The Primary Contact Person will act as Producer of the Company in all dealings with the Festival, and is responsible for all actions and commitments of the company.
  • The Festival accepts payment of application fees using the following methods: certified cheque, money order, or credit card.
  • All applications must be accompanied by full payment. Companies not accepted to the Festival, or the waiting list, following the lottery are refunded their application fee in full - minus the $35 non refundable deposit.
  • If a company pays their fee with a credit card and the payment does not go through due to insufficient funds, the application is considered incomplete, and therefore null and void.
  • If the production is not of an original work, the company is responsible for securing performance rights or permission from the author in order to perform at the Fringe.
  • All international companies are responsible for acquiring the necessary travel, visa, and work permits required by the Government of Canada.
  • The artist/company receives 100% of the revenue from ticket sales of their performances, less any ticketing surcharges, merchant fees, GST and Federal Withholding Tax, if applicable.
  • The artist/company is responsible for all employment and services contracts and payments related to the production, including but not limited to arrangements with Canadian Actors' Equity Association, the Playwrights Union of Canada, SOCAN, and the American Federation of Musicians.
  • All withdrawals form The Festival must be made in writing by the company's Primary Contact and must be received by fax or post. Companies that are accepted into the 2016 Calgary Fringe Festival may withdraw from the event receive a 50% refund of the total fee if the withdrawal happens before March 1, 2017. If a company withdraws from the festival after March 1, 2017 they will forfeit 100% of their fees. All notices of withdrawal must be made in writing and signed by the primary contact. On July 15th, 2017, the Festival will close the waiting list and fully refund all application fees to companies that did not move to participant status. Any Fringe applicant on the waiting list may withdraw from the Festival at any time and receive a full refund of their application fee (minus processing fee).

2.4 - Schedule Changes and Show Cancellations

All artists are expected to be present for all scheduled performances. However, during the Festival, a show may be cancelled due to unforeseen circumstances.

The Festival reserves the right to cancel a performance if:

  • Performance conditions are deemed unsafe or untenable due to inclement weather
  • A performer does not show up on time for his or her performance
  • The performance contravenes a law of the Government(s) of Canada, Alberta, or Calgary.
  • In the event of a Force Majeure/Act of God (eg. fire, flood, earthquake, destruction of property, labour disputes, etc.)

An artist/company may choose to cancel a show if:

  • A member of the company falls ill
  • Personal emergency
  • Performance conditions are unsafe or untenable
  • A legitimate reason cleared by the Festival Director

Any cancellation of performances must be confirmed and cleared by the Festival Director before the cancellation is made. In the event that advance tickets must be refunded, the Festival may impose a $100.00 administration fee.

  • If an Indoor Stage Production wishes to cancel some or all of their shows 24 hours in advance of their next scheduled performance, they must submit a written request to the Festival Director.
  • If an Indoor Stage Production wishes to cancel some or all of their shows less than 24 hours in advance of their next scheduled performance, they must speak to the Festival Director in person.

Festival administration schedules the outdoor stages to ensure that there is entertainment running continuously on the outdoor stages. Artists who fail to notify the Festival Director of cancellations will receive one warning. If the artist cancels a second show without notifying the appropriate Festival staff, the artist forfeits their right to participate in the Fringe, fined $50.00, and their remaining scheduled performances will be redistributed to other artists. Failure to comply with any Festival regulations may result in punitive action, including (but not limited to) artists receiving less than their minimum guaranteed performances, or removal from the Festival and forfeit of their application fee.

Section 3: Ticketing

3.1 - General Ticket Policies

  • The Festival establishes a maximum ticket price that artists may charge for their performances. Artists will set one ticket price anywhere from $ 8.50 to at $ 13.50 (plus ticketing surcharge of $ 1.50).
  • Ticket prices must be standardized. There is no differentiated ticket pricing (i.e. different prices for students/seniors, etc.)
  • 100% of the ticket revenue is returned to the artists, minus applicable taxes and surcharges
  • The Festival charges an administrative surcharge on all tickets sold, along with the Fringe Festival Button for patrons.

3.2 - Purchasing Tickets

Patrons are informed that it is best to arrive at the venue 15-20 minutes before the scheduled start time of the performance.

Advance tickets are available from the Festival web site, www.calgaryfringe.ca, three weeks prior to the start of the Festival. Advance tickets are available until two hours before each scheduled performance, and subject to an administrative surcharge. Day of tickets will also be available for sale at our Information Booth location up to one hour before each scheduled performance, at which point the remaining tickets will be available for sale at the venue starting a half an hour prior to each scheduled performance.  Patrons may pick up their tickets on site from the Information Booth or at the venue location.

A minimum of 20% of the tickets for each performance will be retained for at-door sales. 

3.3 -Frequent Fringer Pass

Patrons are encouraged to purchase multiple tickets on line by offering discounts on the tickets sold. For tickets sold to Frequent Fringe Pass holders, the artists shall receive $10.00 per ticket sold.

3.4 - Complimentary Tickets

There are several types of free tickets at the Fringe:

  • Artist Comps are requested by the artist/company. They must submit their request, in person, at their venue location when they check in for their performance. Only the Festival Director, the Box Office Coordinator, the Festival Producer. or the Venue Supervisor may add to these lists on the day of the performance. Any artist comps not claimed five minutes prior to the performance become available for sale.  Artist Comps are typically handled when the artist designates a password or specific names of people they wish to comp to their performance.
  • Media Comps are used by reviewers. These names are added to the Artist Comp list. If the comp list has no additional room, artist comps take precedence. Media comps not claimed five minutes prior to the performance become available for sale.
  • Staff/Sponsor media give away Comps are issued on the basis of availability. Such comps are issued judiciously at the discretion of the Festival Director or Festival Producer to elected officials, Festival sponsors, paid staff, and volunteer team leaders; and to the artistic directors of professional producing theatre companies, and arts festivals.
  • Volunteer Fringe Show Comps are used to "pay" volunteers. Volunteers receive one free Fringe Show Comp for every 4 hour shift they work, and are redeemed for any performance at the Festival at the door of the festival, the day-of the performance. 
  • Volunteer Appreciation Comps are issued at the discretion of the artist/company. Artists often designate a performance a "Volunteer Appreciation" show, to which a specified number of volunteers with ID are admitted without charge. Artists may offer these tickets by submitting the appropriate form to the Fringe office.
  • Special Promotions will be conducted to encourage purchases of large blocks of tickets. Large corporate clients who wish to buy large blocks of tickets may be granted special seating within the theatre with a standardized pricing on tickets determined by the Festival.

Section 4: Expectations of Artists

4.1 - Code of Conduct

  • Artists shall treat Festival staff, volunteers, and patrons with respect, and vice-versa.
  • There is zero tolerance for physical and/or sexual abuse or harassment. Infractions will result in immediate expulsion from the Festival.
  • Verbal abuse will not be tolerated. Any artist found in violation will receive a written warning from the Artist Liaison for the first offence, and expulsion from the Festival for the second offence.
  • Artists are expected to arrive at their venue on time. Artists arriving late will receive a written warning from the Artist Liaison for the first offence, and subsequent offences will result in a fine.
  • Consumption of alcohol and illegal drugs in the venues is strictly prohibited. However, if an artist is attending a show as a patron in a licensed venue, the artist may purchase alcohol for consumption.
  • We encourage artists to drink responsibly. Like staff and volunteers, artists are representatives of the Festival. If an artist is drinking in a licensed area of the Festival site, they should remove their artist identification badge.

4.2 - Drugs

The use of illicit drugs on site, or in any Festival venue, will not be tolerated and will result in the expulsion from the festival.

Section 5: Artists and the Festival

5.1 - Pre-Festival Artist Policies

  • The Festival Director is the primary contact for all artists.
  • All artists who wish to withdraw from the Festival must do so in writing. The notice to withdraw must come from the Primary Contact.
  • All changes to contact/show information must be submitted to the Festival in writing by the Primary Contact.
  • Artists are responsible for all employment and services contracts and payments related to the production, including but not limited to arrangements with Canadian Actors' Equity Association, the Playwrights Union of Canada, SOCAN, and the American Federation of Musicians.

5.2 - Festival Policies: Artists and Technicians

  • Artists must arrive at their venue 15 minutes following the end of the previously scheduled performance. First offences result in a written warning, subsequent offences result in a fine.
  • Artists may enter their venue for pre-show prep when the venue technician permits them. Access is granted 15 minutes following the end of the previous performance as scheduled. Early access may be granted only with the consent of the technician.
  • Artists are allotted 20 minutes for set-up; including load-in and lighting focus. The artist may be asked to modify their set, should set-up exceed the allotted time.
  • Houses are opened to the public 5 to 10 minutes in theatre venues prior to the scheduled start time of each performance. Holding the house is not permitted.
  • Artists are allotted 10 minutes to strike their set and vacate the venue.
  • Technicians will close the house at the start of each performance. There is absolutely no access for anyone once the doors are closed.
  • Latecomer disputes are resolved by FOH personnel. In the event that assistance is needed, the Festival Director will be summoned.
  • Performances may not exceed the maximum time allowed according to the Festival performance schedule, as provided by the artist on the Technical Information Sheet. Artists receive a written warning for the first offence, and subsequent offences result in a fine determined by the Artist Liaison
  • Artists and technicians will respect all venues, equipment, and artist/company property. They will pay for damages caused by negligence, at the discretion of the Technical Director.
  • The Festival reserves the right to hold an artist's box office payout should any fines remain outstanding, or compensation for damages are not honoured. Failure to pay fines by the end of the Festival may result in expulsion from future Festivals.
  • Technicians are responsible for keeping the production management team informed of any venue problems or difficulties.
  • Artists must remove all set pieces and props immediately following their final performance. Special arrangements may be made with the venue technician for venues inaccessible during peak hours. Artists who neglect to remove their set pieces and props will be charge a fee, as agreed upon by the Technical Director and the Artist Liaison.
  • Technicians will not strike the venue until the final performance has been completed.

5.3 - Policies for staging and other technical support

  • Artists will provide all necessary hardware/materials to ensure safe and efficient set-up of their staging. Technicians will not permit practices which they deem unsafe.
  • Absolutely no pyrotechnics or flammable liquids are allowed in venues.
  • There are no open flames or burning allowed in venues, except candles encased in a glass enclosure, herbal cigarettes, and lighters. Only certain venues are equipped to handle these requirements, so artists must inform the Festival on the technical and program information sheet.
  • Indoor productions that involve fire must ensure that all hanging backdrops or fabric screens and items on-stage have been properly fire-proofed with a flame retardant.
  • All staging must be able to be set-up and struck within 15 minutes.
  • Artists must provide their own crew to load-in and set-up their staging.
  • Technicians address all lighting, sound, and rigging needs for the artists. Rigging hardware must be provided by the artist/company.

5.4 - Artist Payout Procedures

  • Two payments will be made either via cheque or via direct deposit into a Canadian bank account mid-run and the Monday following the end of the Festival. The final payment will include the remaining amount owing to the artist including all online ticket sales. GST will be withheld from ticket sales and final payouts.

5.5 - Policies specific to Outdoor Artists and Buskers (where applicable)

  • Artists who perform with open flame will be required to do in specially-designated areas.
  • Artists who perform with open flame and use audience participation must ask the audience member for his/her permission to participate prior to the start of the performance. The chosen audience member must be older than 16, and physically and mentally sound. Parental consent is required for audience members under the age of 18 participating in a performance.
  • The use of pyrotechnics on site is strictly prohibited.
  • Flammable liquids and gels must be sealed in a METAL container. All containers must be re-sealed immediately after torches are soaked. Containers must not be left open during the performance.
  • Fringe Management and technicians reserve the right to intervene at their discretion to halt unsafe practices.
  • Performances must not exceed the allotted time. This includes performance, passing the hat, and striking properties from the performance pitch. Artists receive a written warning for the first offence, and subsequent offences result in a fine.
  • Buskers must apply to the Festival to participate. Outdoor Artists must have been invited by the Festival to participate.
  • Buskers and Outdoor Artists may only conduct performances on Fringe-designated pitches.
  • Vehicular traffic may not be obstructed at any time.
  • Busker permits are non-transferable.
  • Busker permits must be displayed/visible for the duration of the performance.
  • All performers must maintain a "general audiences" rating for their performance.
  • Use of electricity is only allowed at the discretion of the Festival.
  • Performances run from 12pm - 10pm on weekdays, and from 10am - 10pm on weekends.
  • Successful applicants receive a minimum 2-3 performances per day (at the discretion of the Festival, based on availability/weather/other factors)
  • Time slots are 45 minutes in duration - 15minutes for set-up/strike, and 30 minutes for performance.
  • If an artist has not arrived by five minutes into their designated time, the time slot will become "up for grabs", and any available artist may take that slot without sacrificing any of their own slots.
  • There are further restrictions on performances involving amplified sound, stilt-walking, open flame, or any other activity with safety considerations. Please notify the Artist Liaison of any potential safety considerations relating to your production/performance.
  • Performance time slots are allotted by lottery system. The Fringe will hold a draw two hours prior to the first time slot(s) start time. Participants draw numbers, and whatever number they draw designates the order in which they choose time slots. Participants that miss the draw may choose from the leftover time slots, but are NOT guaranteed their minimum number of performances.
  • Performers must vacate the pitch by the end of their designated time. If they fail to do so, Festival Staff will conclude the production on their behalf, and usher them off the pitch.
  • The first time slot draw will be held the morning of Friday, July 29, 2016.
  • All outdoor artists are expected to monitor their own noise level; however, Festival staff will ensure that surrounding theatres and operations are not adversely affected.

Section 6: Media and Publicity

6.1 - Posting of promotional materials

Can be done at designated locations within the Fringe Festival Grounds. Artists are encouraged to seek out other locations with the permission of the respective owner of the property.

6.2 - Film and Photography at Indoor Stage Productions

Patrons are not allowed to film or photograph indoor stage productions - no exceptions.

Members of the media or individual artists involved with the production may request permission to photograph or film their production. For the request to be granted, the following procedure must be adhered to:

  • Artists submit their request to film/photograph to the Artist Liaison 48 hours prior to the scheduled performance.
  • If applicable, the artist/company must secure permission from Equity or other professional associations.
  • The filming/photography must take place in a location where it will not be disruptive to the audience.
  • Technicians have the right to deny access to this opportunity if they believe it will be disruptive.
  • Technicians are never responsible for the operation of a camera.
  • It is the responsibility of the artist/company to reserve comps for the film/photography crew.
  • Flash photography is not allowed under any circumstances.
  • The camera operator(s) must remain in their designated seat(s) for the duration of the performance.

Guidelines and Procedures subject to change. Please check in regularly for updates.