What we do.

PortFringe – Maine’s Fringe Festival: PortFringe produces one annual Fringe Festival event in June each year — a celebration of creative expression, artistic activism, cultural connections, and community building. We have welcomed hundreds of Artists each year – from all over Portland and Maine, and from all over North America (and beyond).

POP-UP PortFringe: Each spring, PortFringe produces a POP-UP PortFringe fundraising event – an opportunity for multiple Artists/Companies to take on one section of a well-known work (past POP-UPs include Hamlet, The Odyssey, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, and Dante’s Inferno), and turn it into a 5 minute piece of weird and wonderful performance art. The final product is a madcap, frenetic live mashup of all scenes in order before an audience.

Beyond the Festival: In our non-festival months, as opportunities arise, PortFringe participates in community events, and helps previous PortFringe Artists continue to develop their work by making connections with theaters or producers in our area. We also maintain a strong connection with our peer festivals around the world through our membership and active participation in World Fringe Network, the Canadian Association of Fringe Festivals (CAFF), and the United States Association of Fringe Festivals (USAFF). PortFringe hosted the annual USAFF conference in 2013, and 2019.

Our history.

PortFringe launched in 2012 as a five-day, scrappy, little, cutting-edge fringe festival with 40+ shows ranging from serious to silly and everything in between. With generous support from our community, an army of volunteers, and a pool of talented actors, directors, designers, and producers, PortFringe has grown into an annual event showcasing an impressive depth and breadth of genre-defying performance work. As we enter our second decade, PortFringe looks to keeps things fringey, expand our audience base, and be a force to reckon with.

Click here to see information about past (2012-2021) festivals!

Our city.

If you don’t already know, Maine is perfect during the summer, and our festival city is at the bustling heart of it all. Portland (the largest municipality in Maine at just 65,000 residents) is a vibrant coastal city bursting at the seams with character and charm. From the colorful working waterfront, to the cobblestone streets of the historic Old Port, to the sweeping panoramic ocean vistas of Munjoy Hill, and all of the quirky neighborhoods in between – you will be smitten with Portland. The words “Buy Local” and “Small Business” still mean something here in this fiercely independent, authentic city. PortFringe venues are tucked into architecturally stunning historic buildings and eclectic creative economy businesses, surrounded by restaurants, coffee shops, microbreweries and independent retailers. PortFringe is proud to be part of what keeps Portland weird.

Want to know more? Contact PortFringe – we’d love to hear from you!