Fringe Festa Spotlight On: Gavin Esham


The planning for the 2017 Scranton Fringe is well underway – and we cannot wait to present another fantastic festival! In the meanwhile, we have several special events to look forward to until the Fringe Festival itself!

The Scranton Fringe Festival is an annual multi-venue / multi day celebration of the performing arts! Bringing performers from across the country and thousands of audience members to downtown Scranton, Scranton Fringe is dedicated to creating an accessible platform for the performing arts (for artists and audience alike)! Throwing such a significant event (not to mention other special year round programming) takes incredible support and resources.

On Sunday April 23rd, the superb team at Bar Pazzo along with 1120 Creative are helping us present a “Fringe Festa”, a special benefit event to kick off “Fringe Season” here in Scranton. This event includes complementary food, drink and engaging performances by regionally based artists.

One of the fantastic artists sharing their talents to support Scranton Fringe is Gavin Esham!

Professional credits include (but far from limited to) – RAGTIME (Kennedy Center), Tommy (Baystreet), A Kiss from Alexander (Barrow Group), The Normal Heart  (Lincoln center) as well as a backup singer for Linda Elder, The Tonight Show, The Music of Andrew Lloyd Webber in Central America and the web series Intersection.

Gavin, also a member of the management team at Bar Pazzo, took a few moments out of his busy schedule to chat with us – learn more about Gavin below!

Gavin Esham Photo by 1120 Creative (Keith Perks)

How did you begin as a performer? 

         I always sang in church as a kid but never thought about doing anything with it. There were no theaters or dance classes in my small town. So I was going to go into environmental engineering when I saw Into the Woods on PBS presents and it changed everything. I auditioned, on a whim, to the Governor’s school for the arts and got in for singing. I was hooked. I got into the music program at Northwestern University in Chicago and never looked back. Since then I have traveled the country and the world doing theater in all forms. I am coming off a two year hiatus…but I can feel the old “itch” scratching for sure! 

What does Bar Pazzo (in your perspective) bring to downtown Scranton? 

          Bar Pazzo brings urban chic to downtown. I have lived most of my life in big cities and the food and vibe are as.good or.better then any I have seem. I think Chef Tabone is inspired and remarkably talented. I love working there for that and the customers are great and seem to appreciate its contribution as much as.i do. Best restaurant gig I have ever.had. and I’ve had a few! I also love curating the visual art that we have. Gives me a chance to be creative and showcase the wonderful local talent that we have. I really appreciate the trust and faith they have in me as a person and artist. Best bosses ever. I am so 

Why support the Scranton Fringe Festival? 

        I love that they are doing a Fringe festival here. I have performed in may in other cities and have done and seen so many exciting new works in their infancy. It’s a great place for artist, writers, and directors to cut their teeth and present raw art without worrying about the commercial or the bottom line. Arts are such a vital part of any community and have a festival like this is here is awesome.

 What song will you be performing at the event on April 23rd at Bar Pazzo? 

I am singing “I Could be In Love With Someone Like You” by Jason Robert Brown because he was my composer hero in college. I hadn’t been so jazzed about a writer other than Sondheim and then this guy’s comes along and rocks my socks. So this is a throw back to that young dude who was just starting out in theater!

Fringe Festa at Bar Pazzo (131 N Washington Ave, Downtown Scranton) on Sunday April 23rd starting at 5:30 pm.

Purchase tickets here!

 This event is being held in conjunction with the Scranton Area Foundations 2017 NEPA Match Day collective. Every dollar we raise (up to the initial $1000) will be doubled thanks to the Scranton Area Foundation. 
#NEPAMatchDay – 25 nonprofits united to impact our community!