A Day in the Life of an Edmonton Fringe Performer

Opening day for Roller Derby Saved My Soul *Please note that this probably isn't a typical Fringe performer day. Most performers wouldn't be caught dead waking up at this hour.

7:30 a.m. - alarm rings but I don't hear it

8:30 a.m. - wake up thanks to the sun and have a minor freak out because I missed my alarm

9:00 a.m. - make breakfast for the billets while they double-check my show programs

9:30 a.m. - write part two of my Edmonton Fringe MUST-SEE list, send program to printers, double-check show sound design on my computer, run lines, review choreography

12:30 p.m. - wonder why I'm getting hungry again because I just ate 3 hours ago... oh

12:45 p.m. - coffee instead of lunch

1:00 p.m. - shower

1:15 p.m. - pack my bag for the show tonight: costume skirt, shoes, shorts, t-shirt, socks. Mental note  to buy prop popcorn & booze bottle later today. More flyers and posters. I think I have everything.

2:00 p.m. - waiting for a bus to Fringe grounds. Yay, free bus pass!


2:15 p.m. - still waiting...

2:30 p.m. - ZOMG where is the f'n bus?!?

2:35 p.m. - finally!

2:55 p.m. - quick bite with Tara Travis of Til' Death

3: 15 p.m. - pick up programs and get some actor coaching on character transitions in my show from the divine Ms. Travis

3:45 p.m. - put on roller derby skates and flyer the main fringe box office. Try not to check ticket sales every five minutes

3:50 p.m. - check ticket sales

5:30 p.m. - feeling tired from all the skating and flyering. Meet with Emily Pearlman of Countries Shaped Like Stars. She walks with me to the Liquor Depot to pick up what I will use as a prop bottle in the show.

6:00 p.m. - back at main box office, transfer alcohol out of the bottle, put skates back on and continue flyering

7:00 p.m. - losing my voice, realize I haven't eaten in a while, still 30 tickets available for tonight's show, haven't changed my outdoor wheels to show wheels yet, start shaking... maybe I should stop flyering now. Text message to director: Would you be mad if I stopped flyering?

7:15 p.m. - eat protein bar, change into costume, change wheels

8:00 p.m. - walk half a kilometre to the venue, in costume, dragging two suitcases, a backpack and an additional bag

8:05 p.m. - greet venue tech who says I can't go in until 8:30. No problem! Flyer folks leaving previous show.

8:10 p.m. - realize I forgot to get popcorn. FUCK! Drop everything in front of theatre door and run back to fringe grounds. Cut through a family photo taken in a park, run across the street, jump over train tracks, pass the living statues, through crowd trying to watch the buskers, mumble words of missing props to passing fringe performers who ask where I'm going in such a rush

8:15 p.m. - cut in line in front of a small child in order to get popcorn

8:20 p.m. - run back

8:25 p.m. - arrive at venue, sweating and panting

8:30 p.m. - technician lets me in having no idea what just happened.

8:31 p.m. - chuckle at the opening night "catastrophe" together. Hey, it could have been worse. I could have forgotten my laptop with all the sound cues on it.

8:32 p.m. - realize I forgot my laptop with all the sound cues on it. FUCK! Call billet in a panic.

8:33 p.m. - billet picks up the phone and I blurt out the problem. He's not home and tells the people around him what happened. I try not to yell "Please stop explaining and JUST GO!" He thinks he can get on his bike, go home, and come to the Fringe in enough time...

(Sidebar: Unbeknownst to me, billet was at a friends' home where said friends had just announced their upcoming nuptials in November. They had literally just all raised their glasses for a toast when I called. I ruined the toast and still they were kind enough to offer my billet a drive.)

8:35 p.m. - director texts me that of course I should stop flyering and eat something and sorry she didn't get back to me sooner. I call her back, put her speaker while I am setting up the stage for the show, and crazy laugh/cry at the situation. Venue techs continue being awesome. Local roller derby team volunteer arrives and is also awesome.

8:40 p.m. - billet texts that he has the laptop and is on his way

8:45 p.m. - laptop arrives just as doors are being opened for the audience

8:50 p.m. - we have sound!

8:55 p.m. - dance party backstage to pre-show music

9:00 p.m. - Roller Derby Saved My Soul opens at the Edmonton International Fringe Theatre Festival

10:00 p.m. - I need a drink.


Roller Derby Saved My Soul plays until August 25th at the Edmonton Fringe Festival. Opening night was reviewed by Vue Weekly and received 4 stars. Get your tickets now!