I’m feeling a little out of it right now…got the mean reds,and they’re kicking me while I’m down. Not sure where they came from (yes I am), but I’m thinking it’s past time to shake it off, because I need to get in character. And oh, what news to tell!
Actually, it was a pretty light day for me…only three shows (well, sort of four), and only one of them was a new one. Well, sort of two…but we’ll get to that. I felt pretty aok and refreshed today, ready for the final three-day climb to the end of the Fringe. I got to my first venue in good time and bought my ticket, then waited around in the terribly pleasant weather. Soon, another Fringe performer wandered by, flyering for her show that evening. And I recognized her. And…oh, I’m getting a little anxious as I type this, but…
I MET ELISON ZASKO TODAY I MET ELISON ZASKO TODAY!!!
…and she was SOOO cool. I was all like, ‘I saw your show and it was awesome and I blogged about it and stuff!’, you know, like that? And then SHE, she hits me with ‘I read that review!’ and she thinks it was all, you know, nice and cool, and…shit, Elison Zasko knows who I am!
No fooling, I was in a goose-pimply geekout for the next half an hour. It was pretty fantastic, and yes, I’m a tremendous nerd. it’s all part of my lack of charm.
When I finally started coming down out of my brush-with-fame-haze, it was time for lights down on MULTINATIONAL GRAPE CORPORATIONS, and…holy shit, where do I start? From the clearly and beautifully demented Negative Theatre, gRape is a theatrical punch to the face, a nitro-fueled hybrid of anti-corporate rebellion, Pasolini, and You Can’t Do That on Television. Stars Chara Berk and writer/Director Ozgur Cinar come across as wild-eyed prophets, some weird mutants genetically bred specifically to be in this production. Replete with topical video imagery, slapstick, oddball situations and the occasional bout of the scatological ( a first for me at Fringe..!), gRape sometimes treads the border between theatre, and the sort of overwrought and overindulgent works parodied in THE LAST GODDAMNED PERFORMANCE PIECE , but it treads it well. Delightfully absurd, and strikingly intelligent beneath all that bluster, I can honestly say I’m very glad I saw this one.
Next up was…well, pretty much an empty page. I had literally seen every single production playing in the 8pm slot. Now, that wasn’t too big a problem for me, there were a few shows I’d LOVE to see again there. I tried SHADOWS first, but of course it was sold out. So I headed over to SAW, and THE SPUTNIKS had some room for me…but I couldn’t do it. I wanted to, oh did I, but…it then struck my childlike mind that I’d just met (and gushed over) Sputnik-star Elison Zasko earlier, and I suddenly got worried that if she spotted me in the audience, she’d, I dunno, think I was stalking her or something. Which totally would have been accurate.
So I bailed, and took a little down time. Sat and pondered in the beer tent, chatted momentarily with the also-awesome Cameryn Moore, and eventually picked up and made my way to the 9:30 show, my half-repeat for the night. Okay, it was THE LAST GODDAMNED PERFORMANCE PIECE, which I of course had already seen. But that, if you’ll recall, if you’ve even been reading this blog (do I even KNOW you??), was on the super-secret Sunday night Nancy Kenny edition. Tonight, it would be regular Ottawa show leading lady Celine Fillion, also of WHO YOU CALLIN’ SWEETHEART, teaming up with Ben Meuser. And I felt I had to give the lady her due, seeing as she’s on the program and all.
So now, having seen another goddam delightful performance of …PERFORMANCE, I felt eminently qualified to decide…which was the better leading actress? Fillion or Kenny? Who would triumph, and who would fall? Would Celine Fillion not be up to the task?
And now I have the answer. And it’s my usual dapper, diplomatic answer, and it’s that they’re BOTH awesome, and you should be ashamed of yourself for asking. Don’t you blood-hungry swine get by now that you’re dealing with a fucking gentleman over here? Pish tosh!
But I forgive you, as always. Just in time for my final (actual) show of the night, another repeat. This time my second helping of the ridiculously terrific PETER N’ CHRIS SHOW. My planned partner for the evening show didn’t make it for whatever reasons, but I more than made do with Dilemmic Prisoner Nadine Thornhill by my side for the proceedings. And the show was even funnier the second time, probably my comedy highlight of this Fringe, and that’s with stiff competition. Peter n’Chris be the real deal, sez I.
That would have been it for the night, and I would have been home about 2 hours earlier, except tonight the Fringe hosted their SECRET CABARET SHOW over at the saw, and I was too tempted not to attend. What the Hell, I ain’t workin’ tomorrow! The place was packed, the joint was jumpin’ you dig me? Filled to the gills with Fringe performers, volunteers, techies, writers, directors…and, for some reason, me. Pat Gauthier intro’d the proceedings, and were off to a wild and wicked cool fuckin’ race. Bremner Duthie got us rolling with one of his well-crooned tunes, followed by geetar-picking from the likes of Jonno Katz, Ben Meuser and Barry Smith. FAKE geetar-picking from Matt and Peter of MEN TELLING STORIES. The most hilariously distasteful skit of the evening courtesy of Prarie Fire and Elison Zasko (!). Kurt Fitzpatrick (in a positively heroic amount of body paint for that hour) and his crew with the secret origin of food. A multi-Fringer skit (featuring the cast of SEEKING…) concerning poutine-powered dreams of this years most memorable characters. And a killer capper with an original one-act play by Devon and Connor of DALE BEANER AND THE TURTLE BOY. It was an amazing night. And I do know how lucky an outsider I am to have been allowed in.
We all got hustled out, as the show started late and ended later, and we really weren’t suposed to still even BE there. I stood in a bit of a daze, before heading out to catch a bus halfway home and walk the rest. I enjoyed it. And I did all sorts of reflecting, as I often do when allowed time to myself (which is, like, WAY often), and that’s about when I started to get the mean reds. But that’s cool. Because they’re letting me know what I’ve got to do.
Besides, that is, be WAY less serious on tomorrow’s post. The show must go on! And two days left, let’s all leave on a high note. Like, Vicodin-high. No, wait…no. Too low. Too low.
Heroin. Yeah. Let’s go out like heroin. You and me. This weekend. Ready..? See you there (and you better be seein’ some shows),
PS: I’m not actually asking anyone to do heroin with me, it’s just a god-damned metaphor. You get that, right?
PPS: Or is that simile..?