SIDESHOW FRINGE FESTIVAL SPOTLIGHT: Gnimn Takes the Bongo Java Stage for Two Shows

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Gnimn has a secret--one which may be revealed during performances that are part of the second Sideshow Fringe Festival, happening this weekend at various Belmont-area venues and featuring a plethora of events ranging from puppetry to dance, a 90-minute Hamlet and comedy.

Yet Gnimn is unique among the Sideshow performers: “Gnimn began its journey as a child, when nobody knew its meaning. Gnimn was simply an artist able to enterain a crowd by means of impersonation. Gnimn has begun to utilize the years of theatrical and singing experience to create its own music. The synth patterns and intricate layers of four octaves of vocals combine to create a sound all its own.”

Clearly, Gnimn hopes you enjoy the secret and, hopefully, you’ll be able to deduce some of the truths about the myth of Gnimn—along with the realities—from our interview with the artist (you can also learn more about Gnimn’s art by visiting www.Gnimn.com).

“I am so excited that I am heading to Nashville this summer for two live shows for the Sideshow Fringe Festival,” Gnimn, who lives in Los Angeles, says. “I will perform at Bongo Java on August 3 and 4 at 7:30 p.m.”

“I think Gnimn isn't exactly a character, but more of a projection of who I really am inside,” the Tennessee-born Gnimn confides. “I was always too afraid to sing as myself, but I really wanted to perform. So, I just changed my name.”

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How would you describe your performance? My performances are completely music-based, but I'm told they have a strong sense of theatre to them. Each song has a different character that I play to help convey the intention behind the lyrics. 

What inspired your first album Indigo? My album Indigo was a reflection on society in Southern California. Each song stems from an experience that I had or an observation that I made after moving there. The album is mostly satirical but has some very emotional pieces as well.

What are some of your future plans? I suppose the hardest part of exposing my music to the public is getting people to come to shows who have never met me or heard my music before. A lot of people like to stick to what they know, so it can be difficult to introduce them to something new.

I am planning to film a live concert very soon to help people see what to expect from a live show. I'm also working on my second album.

What would you want Nashville audiences to be prepared for? What do they need to know before coming to see your performance this weekend? I would just like people to come with an open mind and expect to be entertained! Bongo Java is a great venue and I'm working with two wonderful background singers this time. It should be really fun! 

This is the second year for Sideshow Fringe Festival, which bowed last year with a spectacular initial effort that promises to be totally eclipsed by the overwhelming offerings of the 2012 edition. Created by Actors Bridge Ensemble to nurture and to train a new generation of theater artists—offering cross-training to give Sideshow members firmer footing and more experience than is usually offered in local theater—it’s a burgeoning artistic and creative collective that produced Boom, the critically acclaimed (that means I loved it) play presented earlier this summer at Belmont’s Black Box Theatre.

SIDESHOW FRINGE FESTIVAL SPOTLIGHT: Gnimn Takes the Bongo Java Stage for Two Shows

“We seek to connect initiative with opportunity and to offer Nashville’s creative community a space to come together in a showcase of their talents that celebrates diversity, encourages creative dialogue, and stimulates the cultural economy,” says their mission statement.

Sideshow Fringe Festival is Nashville’s Progressive Performing Arts Event, a four- day celebration featuring theatre and related live presentations with a special emphasis on original and innovative forms and formats. Dance, music, puppetry, aerial arts, juggling, poetry, and more is showcased in a multi-venue setting with special free outdoor events and family friendly offerings. Tickets now available online! Don't forget to add the festival button, which is required for entry! Go to www.sideshowfringe.com for details, including the amazing line-up of performances—you’ll be staggered when you see the list of what’s coming your way!

The second annual festival will be housed in the Belmont Black Box Theatre, Troutt Theatre, Belcourt Theatre, Bongo Java After Hours Theatre, Belmont Little Theatre and a neighborhood street venue. All Sideshow Fringe shows are 90 minutes or less. Fringe Buttons are required for admission, and you can add them to your online order or purchase at the box office day of show. 

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Jeffrey Ellis Jeffrey Ellis is a Nashville-based writer, editor and critic, who's been covering the performing arts in Tennessee for more than 25 years. He is the recipient of the Tennessee Theatre Association's Distinguished Service Award for his coverage of theatre in the Volunteer State and was the founding editor/publisher of Stages, the Tennessee Onstage Monthly. He is a past fellow of the National Critics Institute at the Eugene O'Neill Theatre Center and is the founder/executive producer of The First Night Honors, held during Labor Day Weekend, which honor oustanding theater artists in Tennessee in recognition of their lifetime achievements and includes The First Night Star Awards and the Most Promising Actors. Midwinter's First Night, held the first Sunday in January after New Year's Day, honors outstanding productions and performances throughout the state. Further, Ellis directed the Nashville premiere of La Cage Aux Folles, The Last Night of Ballyhoo and An American Daughter, as well as award-winning productions of Damn Yankees, Company, Gypsy and The Rocky Horror Show, with Ellis honored by The Tennessean as best director of a musical for both Company and Rocky Horror.


 
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