ms. fresh fish

One last mention…
June 26, 2007, 1:30 am
Filed under: a & e, events, ottawa

So the Fringe is over, making these recommendations effectively moot but still, I feel the need to share. This is why I have a blog, I remind myself.

Upon waking up on Sunday with no semblance of a voice (dragon boating and extreme bowling combination), it became abundantly clear that the theatre was the place for me to spend my entire day. With husband still working away on his never-ending-all-consuming project, it was also ideal for me to clear out of the home and give him his space to work and maybe, just maybe, get the g-d thing done.

I’m not a theatre reviewer, or a reviewer of anything really, so I will just rank the shows in order of my most to least favourite. Keep in mind however, that even my least favourite was still quite good and that my most favourite was, in a word, phenomenal.

The Burden of Poof – I wanted to cry, I laughed my ass off and when she pulled out that bear, I swear I almost peed my pants.

Jesus in Montana – It wasn’t just the powerpoint element that appealed to this bureaucrat, no sir. A great, and hilarious, recounting of a very conscious (and sober!) descent into a quaint little cult in Montana. I had to keep reminding myself that it was a true story.

The Honeymoon Period is Definitely Over – This woman played, without prop nor set, at least ten characters (animals to humans to … fire) in at least three different settings and the audience not for one second loses track of who she’s playing or where the characters are. Incredible. Husband was able to join me for this one too (miracle!) and also really enjoyed it.

Dead Celebrities – Despite the explicit definition of “self indulgent” being given and ringing a little too true, the show’s writing was good – unnecessarily complex at times, I would argue – and the acting had definite spurts of genius… again, in my completely unwarranted opinion.

So six shows in all, and here are some reflections:

The Fringe is especially unique in that it brings “shoestring budget” to a whole new level. These shows are enjoyed for their writing, acting and characters alone – no gimmicks, no safety nets. Most of the shows I saw were one-person shows, which may be a result of not being able to tour a troupe around the Fringe circuit with no money. I’m shocked at how much I enjoy them and think back to the production of I Am My Own Wife that we saw on Broadway a few years ago. Before that, I wouldn’t have ever considered it possible to enjoy a one-person show, multi-charactered or not. Between the limited finances, cast, sets, props and support, the level of professionalism and quality is truly astounding.

My final reflection is this: Next year, I’m not waiting until the last minute.


2 Comments so far
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Did you see Maxim and Cosmo? The best 90 minute monologue I have seen in recent years. It was by the writer of “Teaching as you like it”. I would highly recommend checking out any of his shows if he comes back next year.

Comment by Shannon

I heard that it was amazing! I couldn’t fit it into my schedule sadly but thanks for the extra review!

Comment by freshfish

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