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Rogue 2015

IN THE February 11 ISSUE

FROM THE 2015 Articles,
andArts & Entertainment,
andLorie Lewis Ham,
andTheatre
SECTIONS

by Lorie Lewis Ham

This marks the 14th year of the Rogue Festival in Fresno and there are a lot of new things, a lot of favorite returning performers and venues, and just a great week of interesting and diverse shows. Over the next couple of weeks, we at KRL will be featuring articles about some of the performers coming to this year’s Rogue, and once it gets underway you can expect reviews, and maybe some video interviews. Dates for this year’s Rogue Festival are February 26-March 7, 2015. Tickets have gone digital this year! Tickets range in price from $5 to $10 and can be purchased at each venue and online at roguefestival.ticketleap.com. They have also introduced the Rogue Wristband (more info in the interviews). The wristband is required along with a ticket for any Rogue Show. These can be purchased online or at the door of any venue.

Recently we chatted with this year’s Rogue producers-Jonathon Hogan, Amber Strid, and Barbara Coy-Hogan, about Rogue 2015.

Jonathon Hogan-

KRL: When, how and why did you first become involved with Rogue?

Jonathon: My first experience with Rogue Festival was as a performer in 2004. We played at the former Club Fred & Starline. It was a blast! I have since performed in several shows over the years.

KRL: What has been your involvement in the past?

Jonathon: Mostly as a performer. Three years ago, I staged a Rogue Scavenger Hunt and started helping with the Producers as a Boy Friday. This year I drew the short straw and was upgraded to The Rogue Production Team.

KRL: What are your duties as a producer?

Jonathon: My main purview is communicating with the performers. Getting as much information to them as I can. I am also spearheading the Rogue Festival Teaser Show, directing and co-hosting (along with the stalwart Blake Jones). This year we have a new focus on branding Rogue Festival. This can be seen with our new logo. I also lead the committees for the program and websites.

theatre

Jonathon, Barbara in chair, Amber

KRL: What is your favorite thing about Rogue?

Jonathon: From the first year in 2002 at The Sanctuary to today, over 150 volunteers (from the person taking tickets at the door up to the crazy people in charge) each year have helped to make Rogue Festival what it is. They do it for the love of art- in any form. They do it to because they love Fresno and The Tower.

The fact that for 14 years, the people of Fresno have come to Tower and discovered something unique. This endeavor which started as a small event over a few days, has grown and blossomed into the modern Rogue Festival. Performers throughout the Central Valley look forward to Rogue every year. The crazy bonus is that performers outside The Valley and as far away as New York, Canada, heck even people have come from the UK!

It’s a wonderful family that has grown!

KRL: What are the venues? Are any of them different from last year?

Jonathon: There are 6 Rogue Venue and 3 OFF-Rogue (formerly BYOV) Venues.

Returning Rogue Venues:
Mainstages
Dianna’s Studio of Dance
Mia Cuppa Caffe
Cafes
Spectrum Art Gallery
Veni Vidi Vici (13 years!)
The Voice Shop (previously a BYOV)
Returning OFF-Rogue Venues:
Cal Arts Academy/Severance
Full Circle Brewing Co
This year we welcome the new cafe venue Fulton St Art (next door to Veni Vidi Vici) and Fresno Soap Co.

KRL: Is there anything new at this year’s festival?

Jonathon: Oh my yes.

This year we have made changes in our ticketing system. We have added online ticketing, so you can not only plan your Rogue Festival experience, but buy tickets ahead of time.

KRL: How many performers are there this year?

Jonathon: Rogue Festival will have 66 Performers/Groups performing 284 shows over 9 different venues.

KRL: Wow! Are there very many local ones?

Jonathon: There are several local artists.

KRL: Who are some of those returning this year?

Jonathon: Jayne Day, Marcel Nunis, Boxcar Figaro, Ananka Dance, The Trike Shop Spencer/Morris, Mia Paschal, Claire Patton, Robert Hofman, 1st Men of Promise, Scurvy Spears, Valley Burlesque Society, Andrew Potter, Kathleen Denny, Jaguar Bennett, Sharon Eberhardt, Les Kurkendaal, Highway 41, and Laurel Canyon. I am sure there are a few I missed.

KRL: Can you tell us about the Muse this year?

Rogue Muse

Jonathon: The Muse was created by local artist, Christopher Cayco. The Piece is entitled “Moving Free.” This is the first muse that was completely digital. There is no physical image (there will be!).
Christopher took the time to review some of the suggestions given in the contest information and incorporated them into his piece.

KRL: Any tips for those going to their first Rogue?

Jonathon: Try something new. Take a chance on a show you might not normally. We have a plethora of creative talent percolating in Rogue. While all of it may not be polished, there are some gems that come from the most unlikely places.

KRL: Is there still time to volunteer at Rogue? If so, how does one go about it and what type of things can people volunteer to do?

Jonathon: There is ALWAYS time to volunteer. The fastest way to do so, is sign-up! Go to roguefestival.com/volunteer and sign up. NOW!
We are always looking for people that want to take tickets or learn how to run tech for shows. And if you do, you get a Rogue Ducat good for any show you want to see!
There is still one volunteer meeting left February 21 10-noon. The meetings will be held at Mia Cuppa Caffe.

KRL: Anything else you would like to add?

Jonathon: Rogue Festival is like a cup of soup. For it to be good, just add you!

Amber Strid-

KRL: When, how and why did you first become involved with Rogue?

Amber: I got involved about 10 years ago. I had come to different events throughout the tower. I was introduced to Marcel Nunis and his circle of artistic misfits through mutual friends and the rest is history.

KRL: What has been your involvement in the past?

Amber: I have always worked as a venue manager in some capacity or another. In the beginning I worked as an assistant venue manager, learning how to do it properly. As the years went by I managed venues by myself. rogue

KRL: What are your duties as a producer?

Amber: I deal primarily with the venues. Anything that goes into putting together the space goes through me. I am a contact person for the venue owner, venue managers, making sure we have all the equipment we need to have a great show.

KRL: What is your favorite thing about Rogue?

Amber: I love that Rogue is 100% volunteer. Everyone that puts on the festival is a volunteer. Producers, techs, venue managers, ticket takers. EVERYONE!! It creates a sense of community, everyone can be a part of the Rogue Festival! This allows us to keep the ticket prices low for the audience members and as Rogue has always done, give 100% of the ticket price directly to the performer.

Barbara Coy-Hogan, Executive Producer-

KRL: When, how and why did you first become involved with Rogue?

Barbara: I first got involved with Rogue Festival in 2005 as a volunteer. I had friends with shows in the festival and ran the ticket booth for some of the shows.

KRL: What has been your involvement in the past?

Barbara: For about six years, I was a volunteer, working in any capacity needed by the team leading the festival at the time. Jayne Day made me her “Girl Friday” in 2011 and the following year I was invited to be an Assistant Producer. In 2013, I stepped up to Producer as Jayne got the title Executive Producer.

KRL: What are your duties as a producer?

Barbara: This year, as the Executive Producer, I work to see the big picture of the festival. New staff has joined the team and part of my job is to help each team see how they work with the other teams. Each Producer as specific teams to work with and I am part of the Accounting, Promotions/Wristbands, and Public Relations.

KRL: What is your favorite thing about Rogue?

Barbara: My favorite thing about Rogue Festival is the sense of community. For 2 weekends the Tower District becomes a place where people come together for shows, volunteering, and creativity!

KRL: For anyone who has never been to a Rogue Festival can you briefly describe what it is and why people should go?

rogue

Barbara: Rogue Festival is a performing arts festival that has every possible kind of performance you can think of: theater, music, dance, story-telling, magic, improv. For 7 days over 2 weekends, in the Tower District and surrounding areas, there are over 60 performers at 10 venues, totaling over 280 shows to see. Tickets are between 5 and 10 dollars. Volunteer for a shift and get a “ducat” to see a show for free. The full Rogue experience includes seeing shows that are original, experimental, make you think, and showcase creativity.

KRL: Is there anything new at this year’s festival?

Barbara: Rogue Festival has a lot of new components:
1) We are going to an online ticketing system, TicketLeap.com. Half of each show’s tickets can be purchased online at www.roguefestival.ticketleap.com Also at each venue, tickets can be purchased by cash or credit.
2) The Rogue Wristband is a new program. The $3 for the wristband goes to the Rogue since 100% of the ticket you buy goes to the performer, not Rogue Festival.
3) The GERM is teaming up with Rogue Festival to bring back a film-making component to the festival. Tuesday, March 3rd, 6:30pm at Mia Cuppa Caffe (620 East Olive Avenue) Free with Rogue Wristband, seating is limited. thegerm.org
4) Creative Fresno is partnering with Rogue Festival for a Bartender Challenge right after the Germ event, 9 p.m. Tips collected by each team will determine the winner of the event.
5) The Awards & Wrap Party will be at Audie’s Olympic (1426 North Van Ness Avenue) Saturday, March 7, 10 p.m., $5 cover or festival badge get you in.

KRL: Any tips for those going to their first Rogue?

Barbara: Get a Rogue Program Book, find 3 shows you want to see, and make sure to mix it up! Go see a show that intrigues you by the picture, show title, or description. If you end up seeing a show you don’t like, please remember Rogue Performers have put a lot of time and effort into their shows. Please show respect for that. Consider trying another show.

You can learn more about this year’s Rogue on their website.

Check out more local arts and entertainment articles in KRL’s A & E section.

Lorie Lewis Ham is our Editor-in-Chief and an enthusiastic contributor to various sections, coupling her journalism experience with her connection to the literary and entertainment worlds. Explore Lorie’s mystery writing at Mysteryrat’s Closet.

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