Joseph Scrimshaw, left, Randy Reyes and Mo Perry performed in "Brain Fighters," the top seller at the Minnesota Fringe Festival.

Attendance at the Minnesota Fringe Festival dipped slightly this year. Preliminary numbers are that 48,350 tickets were distributed, compared to last year’s record 50,222. That’s a drop of roughly 1,900 or 3.7 percent. Revenue slipped 3.1 percent to $357,567.

The biggest factor in the ticket drop was an increase in the price of an Ultra Pass — which offers Fringe enthusiasts unlimited access. Prices were hiked to $225, from $150 in 2010. Correspondingly, only 129 Ultra Passes were sold this year, compared to just more than 200 in 2010. Robin Gillette, the Fringe’s executive director, said that based on the average number of shows an Ultra Passer saw at the Festival (28), the drop in Ultra Pass attendance was 1,943, which more than accounts for the drop in total attendance.

As for revenue, Gillette said she had budgeted optimistically, for about $370,000 in sales. The lower income levels should not affect the overall balance sheet, because artist payouts — an expense item — will also diminish. The Fringe operates on an annual budget of roughly $700,000.

What shows were hot?

Measured by percent of capacity, "Blood & 2 Gingers" finished first. It was staged at Kieran’s Irish Pub. "You Only Live Forever Once" by Four Humors at Bryant-Lake Bowl was second best; "Angelina Jolie is a Zionist Whore! or, Plan 9 from Baghdad" by Partizan Theater at Intermedia Arts was third. "Losing My Religion" by Seth Lepore at Augsburg Studio and "A Little Bit of Vegas" by Offspring Productions at the Rarig Center Xperimental stage rounded out the Top 5. All those venues are roughly 100 seats.

In terms of total tickets, "Brain Fighters" by Joking Envelope sold the most; "7 (x1) Samurai" by David Gaines, "The Smothers Brothers Grimm" by Comedy Suitcase, "Red Resurrected" by Isabel Nelson and "Minnesota Middle Finger" by Ben San Del filled out the Top 5.

There were 167 productions in the festival, down from 169 last year.