I was starting to feel the Fringe drag come Sunday morning, lemme tell you. After a full slate of 12 shows in two days, 7 already reviewed and factoring in the journey to Montreal Fringe in itself, and I was feeling a bit worn down. My inaugural visit to the mythical 13TH HOUR the night before, while a balm to my soul, didn’t help my weary bones none either (although now I’m kicking myself twice as hard for missing Sex T-Rex’s WATCH OUT WILDKAT, which had a preview and looks amazing…Ottawa, guys, Ottawa!). So, bottom line, I really needed a pick-me-up that day to kickstart another full day of shows and reviews. I’m pretty much numb to coffee at this point, and trying to cut down on the Red bull, so what else was there?
Theatre, that’s what there was. And holy blue freakin’ hannah, you guys, if MORPILLON – CE N’ETAIT PAS UN SOULIER DE VERRE doesn’t get your blood pumping on a Sunday afternoon, nothing will. From Theatre le Moulin, a young French theatre company with talent to spare and the itch to mount a show, comes this high-energy musical retelling of the story of Cinderella, but with all the sex, sleaziness and raunch needed to give a little 21st century pizzazz. Starring five equally impressive young actors, several in a variety of roles, the collective uses song, dance, outlandish costumes and unabashed sexiness to tell their tale, which even a Franco-challenged Anglo like myself could follow along with no trouble. If you know the story of Cinderella, and understand what an orgy is, you’re good to go for this production.
Marion Van Bogaert Nolasco is Morpillon, the ever-pouting princess just trying to enjoy a little ‘me time’ in her tower. She is plagued by her wicked ‘Belle-merde’, marvellously camped by Jonathon Caron, and her stepsisters Annilingus and Capote (both embodied by Myriam deBonville). The story follows a skewed version of the original path, narrated by a helpful guide (Alexandre Lagueux, who also doubles as the Prince), and complete with Fairy Godmother…or, close enough (Alexandre Larouche, who also wrote the text and lyrics for the show). The show is well-staged by director Jean Belzil-Gascon and executed smartly from start to finish, and every performer shines. Caron is an absolute laugh riot, and a scene stealer to watch out for. I’m seriously impressed at how entertaining a production this gang put on…and pretty goddam hot, too, which was also very welcome on an otherwise lonely Sunday noontime. Thanks for getting me all worked up, Moulin…merde for the rest of the run! And everyone else, check out one of the naughtiest pleasures I’ve found yet at Fringe, English OR French…you’ll be glad you Came (get it?). Peace, love and soul,