By Jared Pixler
The past few years I've had the pleasure of working with a few of the creative folks in the musical theater who have started to call this area home. There are some exciting new musicals being created here, and there's no reason why one of these couldn't become the next break-out hit. I mean, Dear Evan Hansen had to start somewhere, right? (Oh, and don't forget to check out the Tony Awards Show this Sunday at 8! Who knows, one of these Frings shows below may be there next year.)
So if you get a chance in the next few weeks – and I highly recommend that you do! - I'd suggest you check out the new musical by Laura Wiley (Wiley Original Musicals). Her show this year is a parody of the Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Twilight called Buffy Kills Edward: A Musical Romp. I collaborated with her last year on Winter is Coming: A Musical Parody, with my writing partner David Evan Stolworthy, and it was one of the hits of the Fringe.
I'm always excited to see what Robot Teammate comes up with each year, and this year they bring us a new musical adventure in Turbulence! A few years ago the Fringe gave The Video Games (another show I wrote with David), their Woulda, Coulda, Shoulda award, and I have been a fan (maybe groupie? I bought the album of their 2016 Fringe musical Thug Tunnel the day it came out.
Check out the full list of musicals here and find your favorite hook. The Fringe festival is in the midst of previews now and officially opens June 8th. Here is a short list of some musicals that have caught my eye:
13th Grade By Dan Testa and Pamela Eberhardt
This musical produced by the Unknown Artists promises 90's inspired tunes set in 1998 at a community college. It might miss the younger millennial crowd but I have a feeling that this musical has something for everyone. At the very least it will give some of us fuel for our next 90's themed house party and for the rest of us a good dash of nostalgia. Their fringe director, Andy Kenarek, suggests the humor is in the vein of Wet Hot American Summer, Strangers with Candy and Saved by the Bell so, I'm all in.
SLASHED! The Musical By Sean Keller
An 80's slasher movie themed musical that takes place at a summer camp? Referred to as Camp Doom? I'm all in. The good people at nerdist (one of my favorite sites) already wrote a full article on it here, you can even listen to one of the songs from the show. It looks dark and awesome.
Book and lyrics by Gillian Bellinger and Landon Kirksey. Music by Tony Gonzalez and Sam Johnides. Directed by Matt Zettell. Choreography by Annabeth Rickley. Presented by Texpats Productions.
While there are more than a few (I counted seven) shows with Trump mentioned in the title or keyword search. This musical promises Star Trek, meets Rent, Battlestar Galactica and the aftermath of Trump, 400 years in the future. The performance also takes place at one of my favorite venues that is off the typical fringe path. Check this one out at at The Actors Company, in the Let Live Theatre. While you are at it, stick around for all the other great shows in that venue.
COMIC-CON The Musical By Laura Watkins & Nicholas David Brandt
As a fan of comic conventions and convention performer this musical sounds like a blast. It has been in development since last year and is making its Premiere for the Fringe festival. A bit longer than your typical fringe show but something that I can't wait to see. For anyone that wants to cosplay (for the non convention goer, cosplaying is coming dressed as your favorite comic, video game, anime or other character) there is an actual costume contest sometime during the performance.
MY MID-20's CRISIS the Musical
By Kali Davis, Music by: Matt Davis
Usually I shy away from these kind of stories as they seem to abound at Fringe (I've even written my own). But this year I am giving this one a chance because well… honestly they promise “dancing ovarian eggs” (piqued my curiosity) and because of my own recent foray into Tinder land. Maybe this is something that I need to see.
By Amanda Conlon
This is a musical adventure about navigating the current online dating world. And it is based off of true stories. From their promotional video it looks like a lot of fun. At only 50 minutes I'm hoping it will be time well spent!
All in all there are too many musicals to cover in one article. Go see a musical or two this Hollywood Fringe, you won't be disappointed!