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Edmonton International Fringe Festival expects to continue momentum after record-breaking year

WATCH ABOVE: Edmonton International Fringe Festival organizers have high hopes for this year's event after a record-breaking festival last year. Kendra Slugoski reports.

Edmonton International Fringe Festival organizers promise to have a line-up of old and new acts that will thrill event goers.

Tickets went on sale at noon Wednesday and the festival’s artistic director said expectations are through the roof after a record-breaking event last year that had 850,000 visits and 122,000 tickets sold.

“We have a bunch of hardcore fringers. They lineup like they’re getting rock concert tickets for our passes and tickets that are going on sale today,” Murray Utas said.

“It’s flattering and awesome but it truly belongs to the community.”

READ MORE: What’s it like to volunteer at the Edmonton fringe festival? Ask this 35-year veteran

The 11 day Fringe Festival runs from August 17 to August 27. It will feature buskers, outdoor performers, artisans, vendors and over 1,600 live theatre performances at 40 venues in Old Strathcona.

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This year’s theme is “A Midsummer Night’s Fringe,” which was chosen by the public following a contest for the best theme.

“The Fringe Festival is a magical time at the height of summer when entire city blocks become stages for storytelling and adventure,” Utas said.

“For 11 days we have every character and their creativity merging together to celebrate community and the arts. It really is A Midsummer’s Night Fringe when everyone comes out to play.”

WATCH BELOW: The 36th Edmonton International Fringe Theatre Festival kicks off this week, and this year’s theme is “A Midsummer Night’s Fringe.” Organizer Murray Utas and performer Jenny McKillop give a preview.

‘A Midsummer Night’s Fringe’: 36th annual theatre festival kicks off
‘A Midsummer Night’s Fringe’: 36th annual theatre festival kicks off

Jenny McKillop – who is performing in the comedic theatre production “Myth of the Ostrich” – has participated in the Fringe in previous years. She looks forward to the festival every year.

“We love it in this city because we’re able to produce the work that maybe we don’t get cast in in the year, and it just becomes madness with all the Fringe rehearsals and everything,” McKillop said.

READ MORE: 35th annual Edmonton International Fringe Festival sees $1.3M in ticket sales

This will mark the 36th year the summer festival will be in Edmonton.

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