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Elgin Fringe Festival is best known for its performance art. Dance, theater, comedy, music, and undefined art forms delight audiences in intimate settings across downtown Elgin. Fringe celebrates bold artistic experimentation, showcasing artists' work across a spectrum of forms and genres. The festival is uncurated, with artists selected via lottery. Applications are open February 1 - March 1



OLEA, Tennessee Playwright Studio, Dinder Brother’s Circus, Fat Theatre Project, Nava Sarracino, Feel Jones, Marie Cooney - storyteller, Electro Cult Circus, Jen Durbent, Trevor Gertonson, Moana Lotte, & Raquel Gonzalez.



Paul Thomas, Alisa Rosenthal, Kelly Bolton, Kaya Dominguez Luckey, Rachel Benzing, Leslie Goddard, Danny Wightkin, Michael Herndon & Aly Heintz Raddatz, Makoto Yamaguchi, Tiana Song, Thomas A. Rodriguez, & Art Harder.



Gwen Coburn, Audacity Theatre, Sarah Beth Nelson, Ka$h Money Karl, Kyle B. Dekker, The Light Bringer, Deborah From, Katie Ainge, KMAX, & Ambo Dance Theatre.



Mal Hiroaka, David Bremer, Nicki Fortunati-Warren, Anna Lentz, Joshua L. Smith, PandoPOP!, BaM!, Laurie Peters, Sara Peak Convery, Ken Simonsen, Nico Del Rico, Melissa Routzahn, Erica McKeehan, Rebecca Cynamon-Murphy, Theresa Nollete, Kathryn Fredrickson, Tracy Whiteside, Kimberly Lloyd, The Church of Dust.




Should I Apply for Elgin Fringe? 

Do you have something to share? Is your work adaptable? Do you like supporting other artists? Are you good at self-promotion? Or do you want to learn about any of the above? If YES–You should apply to fringe! If NO–Fringe might not be your cup of tea.


How Do I Apply for Elgin Fringe?

Our applications for this year's festival are accepted from February 1st to March 1st. No late submissions will be accepted. Selected and wait-listed artists will be announced within 90 days of the close of the application. Artists are selected via lotteries based on the artist's location, representation, and whether performances will be in person or digital. You will be notified of your acceptance into the festival within 90 days of the application closing date.


You will provide on the application your contact info, a short description of the work (can be a working description), the estimated length of the show, and the number of performances requested (1-4).  If you have trouble submitting your application, please contact EFF Artistic Director Nick Mataragas.


How are Artists Selected? 

EFF selects artists via lottery and is not curated. The lottery categories are as follows:

Equity Seeking Artists: artists that self-identify as Underrepresented. This can include but is not limited to those who are BIPOC and members of the LGBTQ community. The festival is always open to questions and concerns about who qualifies as underrepresented. All artists that are not drawn from the Equity Seeking Lottery are automatically transferred to the Local and Touring pools, respectively. 


Local Artists: The artists’ address is within 50 miles of Side Street Studio Arts’ Elgin address.

Touring Artists/Out of Area: The Artists’ address is outside of 50 miles from Side Street Studio Arts’ Elgin address.

What Happens if I am Not Selected? 

Have no fear! All artists not selected by the lottery will automatically be put on the waitlist in their respective categories. Wait-listed artists will be contacted within 90 days of the close of the application. 


What Costs are Involved? 

There is no application fee. Production fees are required upon acceptance to the festival and range from $50-$250, depending on the number of performances requested and approved. You will be invoiced for your production fee.


Do I Get Paid to Perform? 

100% of ticket sales go back to the artists! Performing artists are able to select one, two, three, or four in-person performances. While you will not be able to choose your day and time, you can choose the number of performances.


Who Schedules Performances? 

All performance dates, times, and locations are scheduled and confirmed by the Elgin Fringe Staff about two months prior to the festival. Performing artists are able to select one, two, three, or four performances.



Festival Artistic Director Nick Mataragas met with 2024 Elgin Fringe Artists to walk through the Press Materials Form and discuss best practices for marketing performances.

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