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Seoul Fringe Festival to support indie artists

July 19, 2021 - 17:02 By Im Eun-byel
Poster image for the 2021 Seoul Fringe Festival (Seoul Fringe Network)

Though most festivals have been canceled or have gone online amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the 2021 Seoul Fringe Festival will be held as an in-person event across the Sangam-dong area in western Seoul from Aug. 4 to 29.

The 24th Seoul Fringe Festival will feature some 300 performances by 72 artist acts of diverse genres from drama, performance, dance, music, visual art, photography to independent films, according to Seoul Fringe Network, the festival organizers, Monday.

Allowing the artists to present their works in front of a live audience was a priority for the festival, the organizers said, as some parts of the festival last year had to be held online. In keeping with the requirements of the virus times, the festival will be held at 10 private culture complexes in western Seoul, instead of large performing arts venues.

As the festival aims to support the next generation artists who are not part of any mainstream scene, the 72 acts were permitted to take part in the festival without screening.

The acts will present experimental art of diverse genres.

During the festival period, an exhibition about the blacklisting of cultural figures by the two previous administrations will be held at the Oil Tank Culture Park near the World Cup Stadium in Sangam-dong.

The festival is to feature Eco Fringe Week workshop for the first time, discussing how festivals should be held in the era of climate crisis.

Artists will be allowed to share their thoughts through the new “Almost Fringe: Micro Forum.” The exact date for the program has not been set yet.

The annual festival was founded in 1998 by young artists who wanted to break away from the mainstream arts community. Launched as Indie Arts Festival in the Daehangno area, central Seoul, it was renamed Seoul Fringe Festival in 2002 and its base was moved to Sangam-dong in 2015.

Tickets for the programs will be available through the festival’s website from July 26.

By Im Eun-byel (