Intrepid Theatre announced on Wednesday that it would be cancelling the 2020 Victoria Fringe Festival due to ongoing concerns with the COVID-19 pandemic.
In a statement posted to their website, the indie theatre company said they had been considering options to make the festival viable including limiting artists to local acts.
“Even this smaller version of the Fringe is logistically something that we have increasingly realised is beyond our capacity to deliver safely with so many unknowns stretched out before us,” they said in their statement.
Intrepid Theatre says they have been communicating with artists who were offered spots through the festival’s lottery system, and are offering them placements in a planned 2021 festival or a refund.
The company added that they would be using the resulting downtime to look at safely re-opening their venues and to analyze their operations.
This includes work they say will focus on “blind spots, weaknesses, and systemic failures” around racism and issues of discrimination.
The Victoria Fringe Festival features dozens of acts over the course of roughly two weeks. It is the fourth oldest Fringe Festival in Canada.