The HFF17 Award Nominees


Congratulations to ALL of this year's participants. You did it! // Photo: Matt Kamimura


Here are all the nominees for the community and sponsored awards! Congratulations to everyone!


Fringe Freaks (Community-Voted Awards)


Top of the Fringe

Blamed: An Established Fiction

SHAKESLESQUE (To Thine Own Cherry Be True)

The Motherf**ker With The Hat





Art and Abolition Help!

I Think I Might Be Fabulous

Ladies in Waiting: The Judgement of Henry VIII

The Girl Who Jumped Off The Hollywood Sign



Fringe First (World Premiere)

Buffy Kills Edward: A Musical Romp

Definition of Man

Narcissus & Echo

SHAKESLESQUE (To Thine Own Cherry Be True)



Cabaret & Variety


Nic & Brooke’s Comedy Dance Party

PSYCHOSICAL: an asylum cabaret

Serial Killers at the Fringe.

SHAKESLESQUE (To Thine Own Cherry Be True)



Airplane LIVE!

Bono and The Edge Waiting for Godomino’s

Easy Targets

Martha Washington Killed A Redcoat



Dance & Physical Theatre

Blamed: An Established Fiction

Definition of Man

Office Beat – A Tap Dance Comedy




Ensemble Theatre



The Faggot King or The Troublesome Reign of Edward II

The Motherf**ker With The Hat

Three Can Keep A Secret


Immersive Theatre

A(partment 8)

John Stamos is My Baby Daddy / Rainbow Brite Power Naps

The Kansas Collection: Chapters One and Two

The Rise and Fall of Dracula

The Video Games


Musicals and Operas

A Harmony Boys Christmas

Buffy Kills Edward: A Musical Romp
Narcissus & Echo

Slashed! The Musical



Solo Performance


Fuck Tinder



Why We Become Witches




Sponsored Awards


ShoWorks Don’t Wait. Create! Award (sponsored by ShoWorks Entertainment)

Insuppressible: The Unauthorized Leah Remini Story



Divorce: The Hip-Hop Musical

Under The Jello Mold


The Screamiest (sponsored by Midsummer Scream Halloween Festival)

A(partment 8)


So You Want to be a Vampire

Slashed! The Musical


The Spirit of the Fringe, Never in a Box Award (sponsored by Lumpy-Cramp© Productions & Motor City Fringe Festival



Divorce: A Hip-Hop Musical

Andy: The Red-Nosed Warhola

Apathy Killed the Cat


The Duende Distinction (sponsored by The Vagrancy)

Charlotte Gulezian – Acting – Blackbird

Christina Evans – Choreography – Toys

Cynthia Yelle – Performance – Confessions of an Arab Woman

Elizabeth Lanier – Overall Production – Narcissus & Echo

Gisla Stringer, Juan Amador &  Brenda Banda – Playwrighting – Urban Theatre Movement Presents: Urban Unrest


Tip Your 2Cents Award for Distinctive Voices (sponsored by 2Cents Theatre Group)


Infantryman in the Wardrobe

The Girl Who Jumped off the Hollywood Sign


The Kansas Collection: Chapters One and Two


The Ripest Show (sponsored by Cherry Poppins Productions)

Definition Of Man

Andy: The Red-Nosed Warhola

Narcissus & Echo

Blamed: An Established Fiction

Divorce: The Hip-Hop Musical


A Little New Music Award for Outstanding Songwriting (sponsored by A Little New Music)

13th Grade

Insuppressible: The Unauthorized Leah Remini Story

Save Me A Spot!


The Wedding Night (featured in 1001 Minutes of New Musicals, Production C)


Larry Cornwall Award (sponsored by Shout it Out Promotions LLC)

The Girl Who Jumped off the Hollywood Sign

​Under the Jello Mold​

Lights – Camera – Lyla! The Second Act

Nosferatu, A Symphony in Terror.

Magic 8 Ball (My Life with Asperger’s)


The LAFPI Most Wanted Award:

This award is being presented to all Hollywood Fringe Festival venues & producing theatres that staged over 50% of works by women.


Rogue Machine’s “Premiere” Award (sponsored by Rogue Machine Theatre)

Urban Theatre Movement Presents: Urban Unrest

A Vegas Kind of Love


Who you Calling a Bitch?!?



Beyond Bechtel-Wallace Award (sponsored by Broads’ Word Ensemble)

Confessions of an Arab Woman

Shakeslesque: To Thine Own Cherry Be True



The Rise and Fall of Dracula


Diversity in American Theatre Award (sponsored by Urban Theatre Movement)

The King’s Language  

This Our Now

In the Valley of The Shadow

Somewhere Between Cosmo and The Bible

Dead Boys


Soaring Solo Artist Award (sponsored by Soaring Solo LLC & Whitefire Theatre)

Transmission – A One Tran Show

I’m Too Fat For This Show

Magic 8 Ball (My Life with Asperger’s)

The Girl Who Jumped Off the Hollywood Sign

’Til Sunday



The Inkwell Playwright’s Promise Award (sponsored by The Inkwell Theatre)

Definition of Man by Nikki Muller

The King’s Language by Chris Yejin

In the Valley of the Shadow by Katherine Cortez

Shakeslesque: To Thine Own Cherry Be True by Alli Miller and Sarah Haworth Hodges

Three Can Keep A Secret by Gregory Crafts


Short & Sweet Award (sponsored by Short & Sweet International Festival)

Martha Washington Killed A Redcoat




Andy: The Red-Nosed Warhola


O Face Award for Orgasmic Achievement (sponsored by Orgasmico Theatre Company)

Lucas Alifano – 13th Grade

Yozmit –  Do You: Migration of the Monarchs

Tegan Ashton Cohan – Easy Targets

Thomas Silcott – Here Comes Rutherford

Wendy Skuse – Ladies in Waiting: the Judgement of Henry VIII


Best Fringe Flyer (sponsored by Lyla KaRug)

Bitch Brow


Hey Hollywood, My Hustle Has ADHD

An Evening With John Wilkes Booth



The Unleashed Award (sponsored by Theatre Unleashed)

Buffy Kills Edward

Insuppressible: The Unauthorized Leah Remini Story

Divorce: The Hip-Hop Musical

Human Hothouse: The Aftershow




tagged under festival · fringe · ceremony · nominees · awards

Meet Fringe Central Lighting Designer Brandon Baruch


Fringe Central Lighting Designer Brandon Baruch with his undeniably adorable dog Ninja

Hiya, I’m Brandon Baruch. I’m a playwright and a lighting designer specializing in experimental theater, opera, and dance. I’m also the guy who designed the lights for Fringe Central.


My first foray into Fringe was in 2010, when I co-wrote and directed a silly piece called Deicide, a Sorta Musical. I became hooked by the HFF bug, and I’ve been involved ever since.


I became Staff Lighting Designer in 2012 when I helped mount some colorful lighting in Fringe Central, before it became that infamous paint store. It has been a pleasure to help Fringe Central evolve from its humble origins into the supercool “Place to Be” it is today (although I do miss the popcorn machine).


Fringe helped me hone my skills as a playwright. I have written four original pieces which premiered in Fringe, and I don’t think I would have had the opportunity to see my work on a stage without the festival, which has served as both a platform and an incubator for my work.


I teach a workshop each year with Corwin Evans called “How to Tech Your Fringe Show". We want participants to know that great design is possible despite the narrow parameters and time constraints of a theater festival. I also like to offer my services as a designer for whoever needs a design that tells a story. This year, I designed 12 shows!


I like to tell people Fringe is my Burning Man. For one month every year, I get to drop everything and live in FringeLand with all my friends and collaborators. I love the sense of family and community this festival fosters, and I especially enjoy watching new and exciting young voices discover an opportunity to get their work seen. 


I hope to see everyone at Fringe Central this year. I’ll be the guy with a Gin, Soda and Bitters in my hand. Happy Fringing!

Meet Fringe Central Scenic Designer David Offner


David Offner has been the scenic designer of Fringe Central for the past three years.

For the past three years, I have taken an almost empty space, and turned it into a place for socializing, drinking, networking and anything in between. Hi, I am David Offner, and I am the scenic designer for Fringe Central.


My first design in the Hollywood Fringe Festival, was back in 2013. I was working with my longtime collaborator and very dear friend, Brandon Baruch, on a Fringe show that he had written. Then in 2015, Dave McKeever had asked me about designing a “bar space” at the Dragonfly. This would become our first year here. We walked into the smaller side of a very dark, dingy space, which had a TON of potential. We didn’t have a lot of money for budget, but when do we ever have a lot of money in theater?!?! That first year at the Dragonfly, we hung paper parasols upside down, and Brandon lit the hell out of them! It was a simple, cheap, and colorful design. 


The way the designs come together is a pretty simple story. Usually around February or March, Dave, Brandon, and I meet at the Holloway Bar in Echo Park (free publicity for the Holloway Bar), and we start riffing on design ideas. For the past 3 years, we have sat down in a bar and have come up with Fringe Central concepts over a pint of beer. Thanks for paying, Dave! From there, I get to start laying out the design that eventually becomes Fringe Central. I’ll start with research ideas, and then turn those into sketches, renderings, and plans. There are always a few key points that the Central space needs to address. The bar, the concierge space, and the ability to promote your show. These are all VERY different challenges than we normally have to deal with in theater. Instead of designing for a 99 seat house, where scenery has to travel in or out; I need to worry about foot traffic, if there is room to get to the bar, space for posters…or how the smoking porch will look. 


Designing Fringe Central is a wonderful time in my year, because I get to break the fourth wall. The audience actually interacts with the set…whether I like it or not. I might have a vision in mind for how it should look in its purest form, but the minute post cards, posters, and beer bottles arrive, it becomes a completely different space. I think over the last 3 Fringe’s, I have embraced these changes, and built that idea into the design. 


One of the most important aspects of the Fringe Festival, is that I work with incredibly talented people. We are basically glued to the space for 2 weeks, and take it from a building that is under construction, as it was this year, to a full functioning theater/bar. I believe that you are only as talented as the people that work with you. A HUGE SHOUT OUT to the scenic crew that makes the space look as good as it does. For the last three years, I have worked closely with Miles Robinson, Sara Paquette, and Brad Bentz (please hire them), plus many other interns and volunteers who bring their skills and artistic sensibilities to the project. It takes a village to make a Fringe. 


I hope you all enjoy drinking at Fringe Central!!!

Congratulations to the Fringe Runway Winners


The Winning Design from Do You: Migration of the Monarchs // Photo: Bella Luna

Thank you to everyone who participated in the Fringe Runway event at Fringe Central on June 14th. Twenty-five different #hff17 productions showed off costumes (and walked with style, grace and glitter) for our three celebrity judges. Congratulations to the winners!


First Place: Do You: Migration of the Monarchs

Second Place: Comic-Con The Musical

Third Place: Nosferatu, A Symphony in Terror.

Honorable Mention: The Rising




Meet Steve Troop, Designer of the New Fringe Freaks


You may notice a few new freaks running around the Hollywood Fringe this year. No, I’m not talking about the countless thespians and their patrons that descend on Santa Monica Blvd. every June — I’m talking about the Fringe Freaks — the official mascots of the Hollywood Fringe Festival!


Allow me to introduce myself — I’m Steve Troop, one of the creators and creature builder of the award-winning Fringe Show, “Alien vs. Musical.” That must be how the Fringe staff first became aware of my work… or maybe because I’ve been begging Fringe staff to rebuild the Freak costumes for the last several years!


Earlier this year, we finally struck a deal for me to rebuild five of the six heads for the 2017 festival. One of the things that Ben Hill wanted for the new Freaks was for me to do my own “spin” on the characters. Also, they should be light, durable and cheap.


Before I was a puppet builder, I was a cartoonist, so I decided that I wanted to make all of the characters a lot more cartoony. I did a series of sketches of the Freaks making weird faces. As luck would have it, the Hollywood Fringe was also running their contest for the Guide Cover, so I was able to further refine the characters while working on my submission. In a perfect world, I would have had my cover on the Guide, my Freaks running around and a show in production this year. Something to look forward to in 2018, I guess!


Freak concepts


Anyway, after I figured out what the new heads were going to look like (and ran out of time), I started roughing out the shapes using the cheapest foam I could find. I use flat 1/2” thick foam clued together with contact cement to the majority of my builds. I start with cheap upholstery foam ($8-10 a sheet) until I have something resembling what I’m going for, and then take the whole thing apart to make patterns so I can rebuild it using the more expensive L200 foam ($35-55 a sheet). The more expensive stuff is more durable, holds its shape better and is — most importantly — lighter than the cheap stuff.


Orange Rough


I usually try to make heads more-or-less symmetrical. During the pattern-making process, it’s possible to “true up” the patterns by tracing each half of the pattern on butcher paper, then averaging out the two sides. Then, you transfer the paper patterns to the expensive foam and glue everything together. Unfortunately, I didn’t take any pictures of this process for the Fringe heads, but my Instagram feed is full of pictures of the process on other projects.


After I had the final head built on top of a baseball helmet, I repeated the process with the “Skin” by covering it with cheap fabric, marking all the seams with a Sharpie, and then transferring it to butcher paper, truing it up and then tracing that shape onto the expensive fabric. While I was building the Freaks, my puppet shop was closing so I got a ton of free “Muppet” fleece (also called Antron Fleece). This was a considerable upgrade that should give the new heads a lot longer lifespan. Everybody wins! (except me, who now has to work out of my kitchen). 


The only drawback to using Antron Fleece is that it only comes in white, so I had to dye all six colors from scratch. I did my best to match the colors, despite being color blind. Did I mention that I’m color blind? Let me tell you, it’s done wonders for both my cartooning and puppet building careers.


The last part of the process is sewing everything together. At first, I started by machine sewing what I could, but it’s much easier to hide the seams if you hand sew Antron Fleece — so aside from a few seams here and there, just about all of the heads ended up hand-sewn. 


I had originally estimated 10 hours for all of the heads together, but by the time I finished, the entire process took approximately 102 hours: 26 hours for Green, 24 hours for Orange, 4 hours for Blue, 21 hours for Red, 18 hours for Purple and 9 hours for Brown. Also, I spent about 8 hours dying all the fabric. Whew!


And that, ladies and gentlemen, is why I’m not a millionaire. But — like all things Fringe, these new Freaks are a labor of love — and hopefully will entertain theatre-goes for years to come! I can’t wait to see them running around the Festival and showing up in everyone’s Instagram Accounts!


Steve’s puppet work can be seen at Puppet Design Studio.

Steve’s cartooning work can be seen at Melonpool.

Follow Steve’s latest puppet builds on instagram @melonpool

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