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Tuesday, August 16, 2022

I've seen 17 Shows so far... And we aren't even Halfway done! Woot!

So, I have seen 17 shows so far, I have at least 11 more to see and I might increase that if I have the stamina! Here's just a few quick reactions to some of the shows that I've seen so far:

Jesus Teaches Us Things - Hilarious! This is the most fun you will ever have at a Sunday School class taught by none-other-than Jesus! We may have strayed from the official curriculum a bit, but boy was it fun! Lots of great songs, audience participation (low risk and totally up to you), jokes that are hilarious but not hateful! Can't go wrong with that! 

The Big Sad - A really well crafted children's show for the wee ones (I'm thinking 4-8 years - 3 if your child is particularly verbal). It's about grief, but actually a lot of fun. The company also does brilliant work teaching the audience how to interact with the participation elements before the 'show' starts so that everyone can have a good time and participate appropriately if they feel comfortable. 

Hunchback Variations - Definitely one for the 'theatre people' like me! It's absurd, funny, smart and performed by two excellent actors. I had a great discussion about it with my son when I got home. Does it help if you've read or seen The Cherry Orchard, I'm not sure? Maybe it will make you want to read it... 

Plays by Bots - Every show is different. The Rapid Fire Theatre folks start each show with a brand new sight-unseen script written by an A.I. called Dramatron, who is a playwright with a very distinctive and hilarious voice and these improvisors go big with the choices presented. Partway through the script runs out and they improvise an ending. I was laughing so hard! I'm hoping to go back to see another show!

Ride the Cyclone - (Note: this is one of my favourite musicals so I know I am biased) A funny and dark little musical about members of a school choir who die on a roller coaster and have to pleased their case for a second chance. I love the show (saw it twice when it was at the Citadel) and this production was so well done! Perfectly cast! The voices and the acting and the dancing - simply awesome! I'd love to catch this one again too! It's also not really for little kids... and I like that about it! 

Destination Vegas
- I saw Destination Wedding last year and loved the script concept and the  storytelling by three terrific actors. The same team (playwright and cast) goes to Vegas this year and things again get a little wild! Lots of laughs with the cast playing totally different characters in a new situation with even more at risk. How will it end?!?!? 

The Dreamer's Cantata - A truly lovely concert of works you likely haven't heard before set around the theme of dreamers and dreams. It's very polished and sharp and all four of the artists on stage are terrific! I only wish I had a program so I could find some of the those songs again! I might be emailing the director to get some song titles and composer names! 

Now I'm off for 3 more shows today! Happy Fringing!

You can purchase tickets to Fringe shows HERE. 

Word of Mouth - Monday, August 15 - Fringe 2022

We're starting to get a few repeats! That's awesome! If you still aren't sure what to see at the Fringe this year, this list was curated by asking random strangers (and some folks that although they might be a bit strange, I would actually call them friends) who I met in line-ups and asking them what they've seen that I should go check out! 

Juliet: a Revenge comedy

The Flying Detective 

The Ladies of Jazz

The Dreamer's Cantata

Ten (The Show)

Dirk Darrow: Magic of Future Past

Blueberries are Assholes

SqueezeBox Cabaret: Divas

Disney Delusion

Suor Angelica

Josie and Grace


Marv and Berry

A Life, with Surprises (and Songs)

Iago vs Hamlet



Crack in the Mirror

Ghouls, Ghouls, Ghouls

Chase Padgett: Lucky Break

Salsa Lesson

Generic Male: Just What We Need Another Show About Men

As always, if you have other recommendations, please feel free to add them to the comments! I'm working my way through a few of these and hope you can find some cool stuff to see from this list OR use the Fringe's magic Eight Ball to help you choose!

Tickets can be purchased online HERE. 

Monday, August 15, 2022

Word of Mouth - Sunday, August 14 2022 - Destination Fringe!

Another Fringe Day, another list of shows that were recommended to me by people I chatted with in lines! I talked to a wide demographic today, from 14 years to 60+ years, first time fringers and long-time fringers, and I think that's reflected in the recommendations I received! 

Remember, if you have a Word of Mouth recommendation (shows you have seen that you really liked!) pop it in the comments!

Chase Padgett: Lucky Break
The Walk in the Snow: The True Story of Lise Meitner
For Science
Ally Anne
Shot in the Dark
Hacking and Slashing
Juliet: A Revenge Comedy
The Flying Detective
Eleanor's Story: An American Girl In Hitler's Germany
Jesus Teaches Us Things
Ride the Cyclone
Drag Me to the Opera
Epidermis Circus

I'm off to see three more shows today! If you want tickets to any of the above, you can purchase them HERE. Some of these are selling out and selling fast so don't delay (for example, a friend was going to join me for Ride the Cyclone last night but they waited to buy and it was sold out so they couldn't join me.)

Sunday, August 14, 2022

Word of Mouth - Saturday, August 13th! Happy Fringing!

Here's the low-down on my Word of Mouth recommendations from Saturday, August 13th! I was running around quite a bit so I didn't get to have as many line-up chats as I would have liked. Please feel feel to put your Word of Mouth recommendations in the comments! 

Josie and Grace
Queer Music History: A Concert
Blueberries are Assholes
Suor Angelica
Jesus Teaches Us Things 
For Science
Six Chick Flicks or a Legally Blonde Pretty Woman Dirty Danced on the Beaches while writing a Notebook on the Titanic
Epidermis Circus
Reyna: The Story of a Zapoteca Queen
Are you lovin' it?
Drag Me to the Opera
Crack in the Mirror
Happy as Larry
Plays by Bots

You can get all your Fringe tickets here: LINK

And a note: You will get electronic tickets if you can't make it to a ticket booth for a physical ticket! That's nice when you are going to something at a BYOV! 

Saturday, August 13, 2022

Edmonton Fringe: First Two Days - No Duds yet!

I've caught five shows so far - here are my super quick reactions!

Fags in Space - So very cute and adorable. Was happy to get ALL the nerd jokes, even the Doctor Who ones! This was a nice gentle and humorous rom-com about two young men who are destined to be together. 

Ghouls, Ghouls, Ghouls - A fine mix of ghost stories and burlesque! Send in the Girls (or Ghouls, in this case) delivers for the burlesque fans out there with a spooky theme! 

Conjoined - Great songs and singing in this show about conjoined twins who find challenges in being together all the time. A cool premise with a bit a of a twist ending! Josh Travnik is definitely one to watch! 

White Guy Onstage Talking - I can't describe the show, but my friend said, "This was what I thought Fringe shows would be, before I saw an actual Fringe show!" I laughed so hard and I am betting that it will be hard to top the amount of laughter. It's weird and ridiculous and not what you expect... 

Charlie and the Siberian Monkey Goddess - A very cool, solid little play about "Charlie Chaplin" and a psychiatrist... or are they? Clever script with an interesting twist at the end. 

Destination Fringe - Word of Mouth Recommendations for the first two days!

It's just the beginning so people haven't seen a lot of shows yet, but here is my first Word of Mouth post for the 2022 Fringe (Isn't it great to be back!!?!?):

Generic Male: Just What We Need Another Show About Men
Josie and Grace
Epidermis Circus
Ride the Cyclone
White Guy Onstage Talking
Crack in the Mirror

Like, I said, it's early so my list is short. I will be in 5 line ups today and will hopefully get a lot more Word of Mouth recommendations for you all! 

Monday, July 25, 2022

Understudies... they get the job done! Clue at the Citadel Theatre and a return visit to Hamilton with Broadway Across Canada!

I had a terrific two-city theatre weekend! After seeing Hamilton in Edmonton earlier this month, I tried for and won lucky lottery tickets to see the show again in Calgary. This meant a quick road trip down south with Gibson on Saturday to catch the evening show and a quicker return home because I had plans to see Clue with my Mom at the Citadel theatre in Edmonton on Sunday afternoon! Road routes were carefully planned because of the Pope's visit and it's many road closures. My article title refers to Understudies and both these experiences speak to the power and incredible skill of understudies. 

First, Hamilton! It was so nice to see the show again and seeing it from the front row was amazing. It was such a treat to see the show up close. Gibson (due to his music background) was thrilled to be able to watch the conductor at certain points in the show. I loved the show when I saw it first but this second viewing proved to me that it is the kind of show you can see multiple times and still be engaged and thrilled. We were also pleased to see two different performers in key roles. Between the two shows we saw different Aaron Burrs (Donald Webber Jr. and Ellis C. Dawson III) and Angelica Schuylers (Marja Harmon and Charlotte Mary Wen). These four performers were all excellent and between Gibson and I we each had different favourites (I won't say who liked who better) but above-all we felt that it was so awesome to see the show with different casts, particularly casts of this caliber, as it made us engage with the show differently and appreciate it even more. I truly appreciate that with a show like this, which is so specific, that the actors were allowed to bring themselves into the roles and not merely recreate the well-known performances of the originators. Regardless, it makes me confident that you will see a terrific show regardless of who in this company is onstage on any given night. 

After arriving home on Sunday morning at 11:55 a.m. I quickly changed and picked up my Mom to take her to Clue at the Citadel Theatre. In the pre-show announcement we were informed that the actor playing Mr. Green was unable to perform and that the Assistant Director Corben Kushneryk would be filling in and that he might have to use a script on occasion. Well, it was a riot! It took me a few minute to get into it (probably because of the driving) but once all the players were assembled it took off with a bang! The show was well cast and director Nancy McAlear did a fabulous job keeping the hi-jinks high! The Set (Designer Scott Reid) is an amazing puzzle box and I was delighted by it! I have to mention the outstanding job done by Kushneryk! It's hard to believe that he was just filling in as he was incredible in a very physical role! It was clear to see during the bows that the rest of the audience agreed! It was also delightful to see John Ullyatt as Wadsworth as his was also a tremendously funny and physical role. But really the whole cast worked together so well - with precision looks and choreography. They were a well-oiled machine and it was so fun to laugh so much! I highly recommend checking out this show!

Clue runs at the Citadel in the Shoctor Theatre until August 7th. Tickets range from $30.00 to $123.00 and are available here.