“Why are there signs up promoting The Fringe?”

I overhead the question asked somewhat urgently the first Sunday that Summit’s production of The Road to Zamboria had audition posters hanging up around the church. From the same team that produced the largely successful The Prodigal Musical last year, comes this tale based on the Biblical parable of “The Good Samaritan”, the signs announced.

Last Spring was the first time Summit performed a musical production at the Fringe Festival. And, if you missed it last year, The Fringe is a conglomeration, over the course of two  weeks, of different artistic theatre productions that are, as advertized, “on the fringe” of your average productions. The Fringe is described as uncensored, unjuried, and presented in an anything-goes environment.  

And I believe that this “anything-goes” environment is what contributed largely to the confusion behind the question asked that Sunday Morning. Why was Summit, a church, preparing to head to a very, well, non-church platform to perform a musical?

“Because that’s exactly where we feel we need to be”, Lake Mary Campus Minister, O.J. Aldrich explained. “The Church was never meant to live in isolation.”

The Church was never meant to live in isolation.

Last year, O.J. recounted, the cast was able to meet all sorts of new and interesting people at the Fringe Festival, learning about them and their stories and getting the opportunity to share their own in return. One of whom, after meeting the cast, was curious enough to want to see where the “first-time-Fringers” came from. Afterward, he started attending Sunday services at the Summit Lake Mary Campus.

As I look back on experiences from last year and eagerly anticipate seeing the cast and crew return this year, I can’t help but want to know more of this ongoing story. We’ve seen how, when we leave the four walls of Summit to engage with the rest of the world, it often impacts those we meet in our endeavors. But I now find myself wondering what the impact will be on us as well.

After hearing about the opportunity to know our community better and meet people we may never have run into elsewhere, the thought behind the question changed that morning. Instead of wondering, what The Fringe was doing at the church, we started thinking about what the Church was doing at The Fringe. And who better to ask than the creators of the musical themselves?

 

 

Does this seem like half a blog? That’s because it kind of is! Check back next week for Kari’s interview with The Road to Zamboria co-director Darling Heldt and co-writer Michael Murray. In the meantime, feel free to get all the information you need to see The Road To Zamboria right here.


Kari Freeman is the Communications Coordinator at Summit. If you just can’t handle the anticipation of waiting for next week’s blog and have any questions for her, you can email Kari at kfreeman@summitconnect.org