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VPR's coverage of arts and culture in the region.

Actors Make Up The Fringe On The Tapestry Of The Old North End

Courtesy, David Schein, OffCenter For The Dramatic Arts
This weekend, over 40 actors and ensemble companies perform 20 minutes of theater as part of The OffCenter For The Dramatic Arts Burlington Fringe Festival.

Burlington's Old North End has a way of attracting creative types to it environs and it has for a long time. Local theater actor and writer David Schein said that is likely due to the fact that the neighborhood is more affordable.

Schein sees this part of Vermont's largest city - also the most culturally diverse neighborhood in the state - as the next emerging arts hub, fast on the heels of the South End.

This weekend, Schein and dozens of actors plan to pour their art out on the stage for all to see. He is at the helm as producer of the The Fourth Annual Burlington Fringe Festivalat the OffCenter For Dramatic Arts. The festival boasts over 40 actors performing cutting-edge theater in 24 plays, each 20 minutes long, all at the professionally-designed, 65-seat black box theater.

Credit David Schein
From the upcoming musical "Hot Ball," from the left: actor Eva Holden, squirrel puppets, actor Geof Hewitt.

According to the North Winooski Avenue theater's Facebookpage, the festival is, "the wildest weekend of theater and performance in the state." Scheduled performances include Schein's musical featuring Eva Holden and Geof Hewitt, ensemble casts like Potato Sack Pants, The House of LeMay and Green Candle Theater, a Japanese n'oh play about motherhood and much more.

Schein recently spoke to VPR about the four-day festival and his musical called "Hot Ball," which is part of the weekend of shows, and about how he sees the theater as a major part of the emerging arts district that is the Old North End.

The Burlington Fringe Festival runs Thursday, Oct. 13 through Sunday, Oct. 16 with shows at 7:30 p.m. from Thursday to Saturday and Sunday at 4 p.m.

Mary Williams Engisch is a local host on All Things Considered.
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