Em Piro | St. Louis Public Radio

Em Piro

Kranzberg Arts Foundation to open new performing arts venue

Apr 4, 2016
Future home of .ZACK
Willis Ryder Arnold | St. Louis Public Radio

The Kranzberg Arts Foundation is developing the new multi-media arts space called .ZACK (pronounced Zack). Kranzberg Arts Foundation’s Director of Operations Chris Hansen said the project will help develop the broader St. Louis theater scene.

“There needs to be a synergy in this new theater district that we’re developing here in Grand Center” he said. “It becomes a place where the performing arts world not only works but they start to build community and fellowship.”

Participants enjoy being part of the 2015 "Act Your Pants Off' St. Lou Fringe event.
Allan Crain

Five-year-olds are known for their openness to new experiences and their steady growth. In its fifth year, the St. Lou Fringe festival is no different.

As the Fringe gears up for 2016, it’s adding new events and positioning itself as a five-month-long series rather than a nine-day festival.

St. Lou Fringe Festival Left, Em Piro; Middle, Alicen Moser; Right, Joe Hanrahan
Alex Heuer

Four years ago, St. Lou Fringe set out on a “passion project” to create an event that provided a networking platform for emerging artists to gain exposure. The project became known as the “St. Lou Fringe Festival,” which includes 10 days of performances from a diverse variety of art forms, including slam poetry, magic, fashion design and street performance. The overall goal of the organization is to promote St. Louis as a “hotspot for cultural and economic vitality” through arts culture.

St. Louis Theater Circle Announces 2015 Nominees

Jan 30, 2015
Provided by the Actors Studio

The St. Louis Theater Circle, a group of local theater critics, released its 2015 award nominees on Friday. 

“It was, I think, a terrific year,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch theater critic Judith Newmark told “Cityscape” host Steve Potter on Friday. “It was a year in which we lost one theater — that’s always going to happen. There also are some new people on the horizon. And it was a year in which, I think Shakespeare Festival St. Louis, which is a free event that draws huge crowds, really came into its own with a double production of ‘Henry IV’ and ‘Henry V.’”

Looking for offbeat entertainment: It's Fringe time

Jun 13, 2013

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, June 19, 2013 - In bigger cities with more experience with these festivals, those who hear the word “fringe” know to expect something that is a little off the beaten path, a little eccentric, a little different.

That should also be the case with this year’s second annual St. Lou Fringe Festival.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, March 11, 2013 - Pity the driver at the intersection of Grand and Washington boulevards on a Saturday night. As crowds flock to and from the Fox Theatre’s national acts, Powell Hall’s St. Louis Symphony and other venues and galleries, traffic must yield to the arts, the grand institutions of Midtown.

But a few blocks from that intersection, backstage and on the fringes, the grassroots of independent artists and small organizations are taking hold.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Dec. 24, 2012 - Only one day after the St. Lou Fringe Festival ended last June, organizers began untangling information gained from the festival and the feedback.

The biggest and possibly only misstep: scheduling it on the same weekend as Pride St. Louis’ annual celebration of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. That won’t happen in 2013.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, June 20, 2012 - Both the theater and St. Louis seem reluctant to let go of Em Piro.

When the St. Lou Fringe founder left Seattle for Saint Louis University in 2004, the idea of theater was a fading image in her rearview mirror.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, March 14, 2012 - St. Louis’ Fringe Festival just got fringe-ier. The response to the city’s first such  theater and other performing arts event was so overwhelming that organizers are giving all comers a chance to show their stuff.

While many of the dozens of Fringe Festivals around the country and the globe take place only inside theater spaces, the St. Lou Fringe is also taking it to the streets with “Fringe de la Fringe” outdoor performances.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Dec. 16, 2011 - In a tremendous boost for the local performing arts scene, St. Louis will debut its own Fringe Festival next summer.

Local actor and festival executive director Emily Piro announced Thursday that a five-day St. Lou Fringe will take place June 21-25. "Connecting brave artists with bold audiences" is the concept behind the more than 100 performances to take place along the intersection of the Grand Center and Locust Business District areas.