MONTREAL, April 1, 2020 – In its most recent statement prioritizing the safety, health and well-being of artists, patrons, staff and volunteers during the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, MainLine Theatre has announced that the 30th anniversary of the St-Ambroise Montreal Fringe Festival, which was scheduled to run from June 1-21, 2020, has been postponed to June of 2021.
Furthermore, following the directives of health authorities, the MainLine Theatre spaces (3997 St-Laurent) are closed until at least May 31, meaning all performances, rehearsals and workshops are cancelled.
“I sincerely feel that as leaders in the Montreal cultural landscape, it is our responsibility to temporarily close our spaces and to postpone the Fringe Festival in order to protect the health and of our artists and patrons,” says Amy Blackmore, Executive and Artistic Director. “The conditions for in-person art-making and consumption amid this crisis are significantly challenging since many are unable to rehearse, have been laid off from work and are trying to manage shifting priorities.”
MainLine Theatre recognizes the importance of remaining engaged with the community to navigate these unprecedented times. From June 1-21, the theatre will be offering audiences alternative programming to the traditional Fringe Festival. Instead, it will offer a series of curated online performances, workshops and activities, featuring a lineup of alumni artists. Programming to be announced shortly.
“I am deeply disappointed to have to postpone,” Amy continues, “but at the same time, I am especially proud of our artists’ work to date. Looking through our program materials a week ago, I was getting really excited about the lineup of theatre, dance and music! I am also proud of the preparations our team has made for our 30th anniversary celebrations, which included an overhaul of our box office system, a new Fringe Park layout and several audience development initiatives.
“We recognize that we find ourselves in an unprecedented situation, and will be refocusing our efforts in order to ensure that our organization survives through this crisis. Montrealers need their Fringe Festival and indie theatre arts hub and we are ready to put up a fight!”