The Largest-Ever Live Arts Festival & Philly Fringe Returns September 2-17 With 180+ Dance, Music And Theater Acts In Dozens Of Off-Beat Venues

The Philadelphia Live Arts Festival and Philly Fringe is back, September 2-17, with 16 days of more than 180 dance, theater, visual arts, music and spoken-word presentations performed in venues of every stripe, from traditional stages to street corners, cars, galleries, cabarets and restaurants.

In conjunction with the Fringe, which welcomes any and all artist submissions, the Philadelphia Live Arts Festival features performances by acclaimed international and local contemporary artists who are selected and specifically invited to the festival. Together, the Philadelphia Live Arts Festival and Philly Fringe draw tens of thousands of people to Philadelphia.

It’s all offbeat, daring and avant-garde with lots of artistic cross-pollination. And it’s a Philadelphia tradition celebrating its 15th year of wild creativity this fall.

Here’s everything you need to know:

How It Started

Influenced by Edinburgh, the granddaddy of all Fringe Festivals, five Philadelphia artists banded together in 1997 to create an outlet for other experimental performers to present their works. What began as a five-day event has grown into more than two weeks of high-quality, hugely innovative artistic presentations.


Click here to browse all the 2011 shows. Genres include: theater, dance, comedy, music, film, poetry, puppetry, visual art and work that incorporates multiple genres and disciplines.

The Philly Fringe celebrates live performance by offering festival artists the opportunity to present their work free of a selection process, which is unusual. For many professional companies, the Fringe also brings the freedom to try something new.

Artists in the 2011 Philly Fringe hail from Philadelphia and other Pennsylvania cities and suburbs, as well as Maryland, New Jersey, Virginia, North Carolina and Utah. The farthest traveling participants this year are from Tel Aviv, Israel!


Tickets are now on sale. You can search online for the productions you’re interested in, by neighborhood, genre, features and date. Alternatively, the 2011 Festival Box Office is located at the Prince Music Theater, 1412 Chestnut Street.

Festival Bar

RUBA Club Studios in Northern Liberties opens its doors at 10 p.m. every night of the festival to provide a relaxed social environment that brings together festival artists and audiences in an intimate setting where they can enjoy post show drinks and conversation, late-night cabaret and variety shows and more. It’s first come, first serve, and doors close at capacity.

It’s going to be huge. The multitude of events, activities and performances is overwhelming; but we have your back. Stay tuned for more detailed guides!

2011 Philadelphia Live Arts Festival and Philly Fringe
When: September 2-17
Where: Locations vary
Cost: Varies
More info:


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