Publicist: Jim Blanchette

Jul

The Circle Table

A smart ensemble of talented young actors bring their focus to love in the social media age. Presented in a series of scenes, the show cycles through the trials of young people finding their way in the world. The cast was top notch, with delightful subtle and nuanced performances, none better than the outstanding Ali Pinkerton. But their were no weak links. The strength of the this piece is the well-directed acting company.

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Jul

Batter Up: My Brain on Baseball

Take me out to the ballgame, but only if I can go with Brett Moore. The breadth of his knowledge about the game is astonishing, but his passion for the game is even greater. There are games and prizes, but the best part is Brett’s enjoyment in taking you along for an epic ride in his baseball addled brain

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Jul

Leaving Prince Charming

Lara Repko finds tremendous positivity and humor in this fantastic show about how she got herself into and out of a terrible situation. Her ability to keep it light even as things in her life go dark is amazing to watch. She’s a gifted performer, ranging from silly to intense to sublime with a moment’s grace. One doesn’t think of sweet and strong when describing a performer, but it fits Lara perfectly.

Go see it.

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Jul

Raised By Wolves

It’s deeply personal look into her upbringing in a house that embraces pack structure. But also so much more. Marla Black takes with her for her triumphs and defeats, her thrills and dangers, and her incredible journey to find a pack of her own.

Marla’s simple charm is disarming, and you are pulled along for the ride. The show was both everything and nothing like I thought it would be. I loved being part of her pack for a little while.

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Jul

Bunny the Elf LIVE!

It was everything I hoped it would be and more. Bunny the Elf is a delightful character. She’s naive but enthusiastic and achingly sincere. Christi Pedigo creates a world where a grown woman believes in the magic of Christmas. When the main character is a bit of dim bulb, you don’t expect the writing to be crisp and smart.

Go spend an hour with Bunny.

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Jul

She Kills Monsters

This ensemble loves the material and each other. They commit to this marvelous script and their tenacity pays off. The women of this company constitute one of the strongest female ensembles I’ve seen at Fringe. Leading the charge is Vivi Thai, her beautiful transition between awkward role-playing newb to impassioned adventurer is measured and perfect. Susannah Snowden-Ifft, as the perky and adorkable Tilly, expertly tackles the tricky role of geeky sister and fantasy heroine. The core relationship between Vivi Thai and Susannah Snowden-Ifft is potent and real, exactly what the show needs to make us care about the characters in both the real and the fantasy world.

This is a fun and surprisingly touching evening of theatre.

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Jul

POCKETS

Robot Teammate does it again. A delightful show of whimsy and silliness, but with a beautiful, heartfelt core. Every performer shows the strength of this great ensemble, especially Dave Reynolds, a veritable ensemble to himself, and Kat Primeau as the strong but conflicted Duchess. However, no one shines brighter than Molly Dworsky. Her wonderful pluck and enthusiasm are worth the price of admission by herself.

The score is memorable. (I’m still humming the opening number). Paul Hungerford’s easy directorial hand takes this show up a notch. By far their most ambitious production, and also their best.

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Jul

BLACKBOXING

For everyone who has every done a Fringe show, Blackboxing is must see theatre. Matt Ritchey sharpens the blade of his years of festival theatre experience and lovingly skewers every wonderfully awkward stereotype. Matthew Martin’s fluid direction moves Ritchey from performance to performer with ease. And we should ALL have a stage manager as wonderfully honest as Jim Niedzialkowski, who steps out of the booth to keep it real and bring a beautiful heart.

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Jul

And Now It's All This!

A crisp, simply presented piece with dynamic performers. David Foy Bauer embodies John Lennon perfectly. Spencer Cantrell brings nuance to everything he’s ever done and this is no exception. Maureen Cleave woos us with her subtle charm.

This is a great teaser for the full length play to come.

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Jul

Life Plan, or How to Live your Best Life in a Collapsing World!

This show is hilarious in its execution and frightening with possibilities for humanity’s future. The entire cast of this show brings their A game, but the real stars of the show is Matthew Latkiewicz’s inventive concept and hilarious script. The fictional world is perfectly crafted and revealed to the audience in tiny pieces, so when the audience figures out what’s going on, little gasps of realization can be heard all over the house. The whole evening is fun and thought-provoking.

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Jul

The Journey of the Little Prince

Surreal and inventive, Journey uses minimal lighting and beautiful projections to retell this classic French story. It’s a unique sensory poem of voices, shapes and movement, not like anything else I’ve seen at Fringe.

Even in shadows, the performances fully support the style of the piece. Patricia Mizen is particularly strong, embodying her many characters with grace. Irina Kompa’s unique vision gives this show its uniqueness.

It’s a calming and lovely hour of theatre.

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Jul

Saving Cain

Nobody handles serious material better than Leah Verrill. She is quirky and funny one moment and can be emotionally raw with the flip of a switch. This is the kind of role that is built for her. The supporting cast is rich with talent and keep the play moving forward. David Chrzanowski brings the best out of his cast, knowing when to pull back the reins and when to let his actors fly. Aaron Kozak’s script is ambitious, juggling together the two stories of his main characters. Saving Cain is a lovely drama.

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Jul

The Mayor's Debate of Tranquility, Nebraska

Jim Hanna is one of my favorite creators at Fringe, and The Mayor’s Debate is maybe his best effort. And that’s a very high bar. His script is witty, smart and, at moments, shocking. He’s assembled a great ensemble who play their parts to perfection. The debate is ultimately secondary to the existential truths they explore. The characters bounce from political discussions to person attacks to topics that should not be talked about in civil conversation. I don’t want to give anything away. Just go see it already.

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Jul

FERTILE: A Conversation About the Expectation of Procreation

There is a good reason this is one of the toughest tickets at Fringe to get. That reason is Heather Dowling. The definition of each character is so specific and wonderful. She sets down the gold standard of what a solo performance should be.

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Jul

Wigfield

I can’t say enough great things about this show. The cast is fantastic and 100% buying into the style of the piece, lovingly crafted by director Arlo Sanders. It would take me paragraphs to describe the incredible character work by the entire cast. Just go see it. You’ll see how good they are for yourself.

However, I will take space to heap praises on playwright Pamela Eberhardt. It took her 16 years to chase down the rights to adapt the book, and she obviously honed her craft to razor sharpness in the meantime. Every character shines with unique and lovely peculiarity. Wigfield feels like an amalgam of an absurdist fairy tale and a cautionary morality play. Oddity plays like normalcy. I’m excited to see what she comes up with next because her writing is hilarious and sublime.

Go see it already. And don’t be a wuss. Sit in the splash zone.

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Jul

The Last Croissant

This show is loaded with silliness and an avant-garde aesthetic. Veronica Tjioe sets the stage with her wonderfully quirky script. Rosie Glen-Lambert expertly moves the pace of this show from each farcical setup to the next. She lets each strange and wonderful character breathe and become fully realized without letting them get over the top. The actors are all fully engaged in the show’s unique style and are all clearly enjoying themselves.

Get a ticket if you can. It’s tremendous amount of fun.

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Jul

The Bully Problem

Michael Shapiro’s musical is delightful and energetic. The cast is invigorated by Joanna Syiek’s precise and inventive direction and choreography. Jennifer Lin’s musical direction makes the wonderful score shine. There are many fantastic performances delivered by the cast, none more so than the work of Allie Costa and Jordan Mitchell-Love. Costa soars as both the adorkable love interest as well as the moral center of the show. Mitchell-Love gentle positivity and subtle humor as the artificial life form provides unexpected heart. This show has a great future.

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Jul

ORANGUTAN

Kristina Mueller pulls off the impossible, making the mother of the orange-faced world leader a sympathetic and engaging. She creates a broken matriarch who agonizes over her decisions long after she’s made them. Kristina is engaging, powerful and embraces her demented creation with loving arms. Tinks Lovelace stages the play in such a way as to maximize the separation from the character and the audience, isolating her in her crazed musings.

I can’t wait for the next thing they collaborate on.

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