It’s here! Day one of Ottawa Fringe is upon me, and I’m freaking out a bit because a few months ago I opened my big mouth and said (well, wrote really, and with my hands, not my mouth, but…) that I was going to review a whole ton of shows, just like I used to! Which sounds great, except to the people it sounded horrible to (follow them on twitter!). But I had more stamina back then! I was young and full’a beans! MAGIC beans, even! And this opening paragraph is droning on and on and I’ve only got 45 minutes until my next show starts and holy bananas I’d better get on with this!
So show the first for me for 2018 was out at the awesome Studio B at La Nouvelle Scene, and it was….no, I’m gonna write the whole damn title here…Fool Muun Komming!<BeBgWundrfull/Yesyes/4sure.HI5.TruLuv;Spank Spank:-Sofun_Grate_Times> (phew) (that ‘Phew’ was NOT part of the title, by the way) from the Invisible Theatre of Minneapolis, created by and starring Sam Kruger. Kruger, a student of Gaulier’s famed clown school (like local heroes Madeleine Hall and Mitchel Rose, to namedrop for a moment), is the sole performer and human special effect for this one-of-a-kind science fiction romp. Kruger stars as a seemingly nameless, humanoid-appearing alien envoy/diplomat, come to engage us mere Earthlings in anticipation of an arrival. The arrival of what is up for some discussion, but Sam’s alien seems more than content to occupy his time with us telling stories, having a good time, and just trying to connect with people.
Telling any more plot that that would be, well, telling, but suffice it to say that while the somewhat slender storyline of FOOL MUUN KOMMING is indeed satisfying, it plays a distant second banana to the brilliant charms and plastic limbs of Sam Kruger. His Gaulier clown skills are on high display here as he makes such a convincingly awkward alien I am honestly having trouble believing he really isn’t. He is endlessly enjoyable to watch as he moves and slides and hops and sprawls with a unique style that he seems to have been born with…the ‘Day in the Life’ portion of the show is such brilliant theatre magic I may have briefly considered ending my personal ‘fringe binge’ for the year right then and there, because I knew it wasn’t going to get any better.
Of course Imma keep going, because FRINGE, but it’s going to be tough to top this one. And admittedly, it tugs on a lot of my own personal loves in theatre, including clown, physical theatre, and just general high-concept absurdity. If that’s not your bag, then I don’t know what’s wrong with you, but you’re reading my blog why now? Great performance in a wonderfully unique show, terrific sound and lovely lightwork, imaginative to no end and heartfelt to the last moment. And Sam..? Thanks for the dance. I will never forget it. Peace, love and soul,
Kevin R (and Baby G)
PS check out Sam’s remaining showtimes and ticket info HERE!