By Heather Christie
Attending Toronto’s annual Fringe Festival is like playing fast and loose with Every Flavour Jelly Beans; the good is good, while the bad makes you want to projectile vomit. In addition to the 150 productions, this year’s Fringe has also got a snazzy St. Ambroise beer tent and all-night partays from July 1-12 at the Fringe Club. While you never know what to expect when you walk into the theatre, here are the plays running during the festival that we think look best-what we’re intrigued, excited, and curious about.
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36 little plays about hopeless girls
Director: Aurora Stewart de Peña
Bread & Circus
36 one-minute vignettes, dances, etc. about the minutiae of everyday life. Presented by our ever-faves
Birdtown and Swanville
A Tranny Tale
Director: Daniela Vena and Jesslyn Miller
Factory Studio Theatre
This play’s a keeper if only for the descriptive limerick found on the Fringe site:
There once was a prince named Cid
Who in a woman’s body he hid.
And he loved Betty
(Who was married to Freddy)
And lived happily ever after they did?
Me and My Jewish Mother
You know those exceptionally weird posters you’ve seen all over town – the one’s that say Chooch Bummy Bum + Inguele. From Child to Man-Child? Well this play by eccentric pale blue suit man Marcello Cabezas is sure to be a riot that takes you into his hilarious upbringing with the kind of anecdotes worthy of a Wes Anderson film.
Bear & Fox’s Big Adventure in Married!
by Paul Frank & Mel Paraboo
Factory Studio Theatre
Yes, I would like to see a relationship that’s worse than mine (if I had one). Come for the comedy, stay for the dysfunction. Besides, I’ve always wondered how a bear and a fox would get it on.
I Am Not Neil Young, the musical
Director: Don Lamoreux
Frank Wilks has sold out all over the place with this one; Windsor, Hamilton and London’s Fringe fests have dished out accolades like they were going outta style.
It’s Just a Phase
Directed by: Marissa Gregoris
Passe Muraille Mainstage
Recently-out Alexis has just been dumped by her first girlfriend, and her mum is seizing this opportunity to straighten her out. A hit from last year’s Fringe, this one takes us on a ludicrous journey through hetero-flexibility.
My Mother’s Lesbian Jewish-Wiccan Wedding
Director: Andrew Lamb
Bread & Circus
It’s a musical about coming out to your son as a Lesbian and a Jew. And meeting his gf for the first time at Hooters. Not sure where the Wicca part comes in, but this sounds like a hoot, so to speak.
by Kiran Friesen
Factory Theatre Mainspace
Director/writer/actress Kiran Friesen explores the life of an exotic dancer undergoing a major life change. Pop culture’s mass-consumption of the sacred feminine and pre-fab sexualities perform an intellectually exploratory striptease in an attempt to rehash the relationship between women and sex.
Saucy Wenches in the Trenches
Director: Serje Marquis
Free Times Café
A showbiz showdown between two soon-to-be divas who—like most soon-to-be-divas--waitress by day. Ah, the trials and tribulations of making it big.
presented by Rapid Fire Theatre from Edmonton, AB
These guys know their improv. Apparently, according to the Edmonton Journal, it’s “as close as you get at the Fringe to guaranteed laughs… insanely funny.” If that’s not something along the lines of a sure bet, I don’t know what is.
by Randy Rutherford
St. Vladimir’s Theatre
One-man-show Randy has won ‘best of Fringe’ 23-times, so we’re pretty sure that this one will be a-ok too. A typical down-and-out Romeo dreams of wooing the homecoming queen and rescuing his mummy from boozing, abusive step-daddy.