Virginia Beach Art that pushes the envelope is taking over The Z this April. The Z Fringe Festival returns to Virginia Beach Town Center with performances of theater, comedy, and new works, alongside a visual arts installation. 

This year’s selections include local and national artists, featuring performances of theater, comedy, music, in a 2-day festival celebrating storytelling of all genres.  

New to the 2024 Festival 

This year, the festival returns with 2 new categories of works: Visual Arts and Works-in-Progress. 

Visual artwork will be displayed gallery style in the lobby through the entire festival. Artist submitted individual works, full gallery displays, and maker space crafter tables. Artists will sell their work and be available during the Festival Gallery Tour, Saturday, April 6 from 12:00PM to 4:00PM. 

Pieces submitted as “Works-in-Progress” will allow artists to present a new work still in the creative process for audience feedback on performance day. 

This Year’s Performances 

The 2024 Festival features 25 acts selected by lottery from over 50 submissions, and will showcase new plays, poems, stand-up routines, music acts, and visual galleries. 

Performers are traveling from out of town, as well as local favorite creators debuting new works, with the total number of artists involved hitting over 200! Some of the featured works include: 

  • Operation Smile’s Puppet Friends Show 

“The Puppet Friends Show” presented by Operation Smile’s Interactive Learning Center, is a captivating performance that will delight audiences with the stories of our Puppet Friends. This dynamic show uses puppetry, song and interactive storytelling to explore the challenges faced by children with cleft conditions and the life-changing work of Operation Smile. 

  • Steadfast by Chris Anderson, a new musical 

Steadfast is the story of brilliant reformer and public servant Frances Perkins. Set in 1911, before women even had the vote, Miss Perkins sets out to end child labor and improve living conditions for the working poor. 

  • Meet Me at The Casino, a new play by Ashlee Rey 

Meet Me At The Casino” is a riveting play that delves into the complexities of family dynamics against the backdrop of a lively casino setting. The story follows the King family as they gather for a long-awaited reunion on Father’s Day weekend. 


What is a Fringe Festival? 

The Z’s Fringe Festival is a celebration of self-produced performance art that pushes the envelope and makes a statement. Performances at The Z Fringe are theatrically-based, meaning they have a viewpoint, tell a story, or connect multiple pieces with a theme. Like the origin story of Fringe Festivals, The Z Fringe was created to give performing artists access to performance space and the opportunity to explore new concepts and performance formats that don’t fit a ‘traditional’ production model.  

A full list of performances and the full performance schedule can be found at All-access passes, single day passes, and single-show tickets are available online or by calling the box office at 757-499-0317.