With scripted sketches, improv, video, plenty of pop music and, of course, a secret handshake, Thank You Kiss — comprised of Marc D’Amico, Megan Mack, John Forrest Thompson, and Beth Winslow — makes a hilarious return to the Blackfriars Theatre stage for the first time since 2017. “Secret Handshakes” begins with everyday situations at places from the office, to suburbia, the dentist office and a moving car, and twists them into unexpected and bizarre outcomes.
With its straightforward title, the utterly delightful “Muffin Theatre Presents: A Show With Cookies” delivers exactly what it promises. The entire solo show follows Katherine Marino’s chipper hostess as she decides to bake some cookies.
One of the things I love most about Fringe is I always learn something. Usually it’s a life lesson or a new way of looking at something, but Friday night, I learned all of that, as well as the life story of iconic performer Josephine Baker.
Garth Fagan has been a fixture in the Rochester community for nearly 50 years for a reason — he has a distinct style that is instantly recognizable, but he is constantly coming up with fresh ways to present his style of dance.
A symphony orchestra in a Fringe Festival? It sure makes sense when the orchestra gives an entire program of recent music by four American composers, all very much alive.
Rochester Fringe 2019, fringeCITY19, The Memory Palace
Brooklyn-based duo Charming Disaster was charming as hell, but the only thing disastrous I could see and hear was the two girls sitting behind me that wouldn’t shut up. That notwithstanding, the band put out a dark set of sense, of sensuality, and of grace.
Before entering the gymnasium venue of “Brave Space” at the School of the Arts, the audience is instructed to watch a short introductory video to let us know what to expect from the show we’re about to see. We’re told to prepare to get cozy with one another, and that audience members may be asked to assist the performers at certain points throughout the act.
There’s something raw and vulnerable about telling a personal story. It’s the stuff of memoir, autobiography, of poetry and prose.
Three producers, five writers, five directors, 14 actors, 24 hours. “The 24 Hour-Plays,” an ever-popular Fringe act, returned to Writers & Books on Monday night for two performances at 7 p.m. and 9 p.m.
If you know what you’re doing, you don’t need a long time to convey emotion and a point.
Rochester Fringe 2019, fringeCITY19
Most parents may shy away from bringing their kids to a performance of “Stomp.” But what if you removed some of the volume and injected some humor perfect for young audiences? You’d get “Rhythm Delivered.” The troupe of dancers and percussionists use their bodies, as well as miscellaneous objects (paint buckets, cardboard boxes, plastic tubes, and more) to make music, art, and straight-up fun.
The French company Plasticiens Volants made up for Friday night's forced cancellation due to high winds with two spectacular shows on Saturday night. It was mighty cool, it was mondo epic and truly amazing how they brought these enormous inflatable sea creatures to life over the heads of thousands of mesmerized souls, as their jaws hit the Parcel 5 gravel in awe.
I always try to make a point of attending the annual Fringe program from RIT’s School of Film and Animation, which presents a host of films (34 this year) produced by the students of SOFA. The works are selected to represent every year of the school’s graduate and undergraduate programs, as well as every genre of film — so there’s bound to be something for everyone among the offerings.
Language is a funny thing. It's even funnier when Sufian Zhemukhov takes command of it to tell his story of coming to America from Russia and finding out slowly (and sometimes painfully) that the language of love is not international.
Just to put it up front: “Dogfight” is a musical with a book by Peter Duchan and a score by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul. I mention this because their names are mentioned nowhere on the program for OFC Productions’ Fringe Festival presentation.
Seven minutes before his 7 p.m. curtain on Friday night, performer Michael Burgos was on the first floor of Writers & Books, nervously milling around the long line that had formed outside the stairway to the second floor theater. A house manager cleared her throat.
The infamous Colma, California is a small town just south of San Francisco where, thanks to a significant chunk of the city’s land being devoted to an absurd number of cemeteries, the dead outnumber the living by a jaw-dropping 1,000 to 1. With roughly 1800 living residents, that’s a lot of stiffs.
“Charlie and the Siberian Monkey Goddess” manages to be something you’ve seen before — the zany “Who’s the crazy one?” debate in a psychiatrist’s office — and something a bit different, in that the debate is between Charlie Chaplin (or an imposter) and someone who might be a doctor, or the goddess of the title, or possibly Princess Anastasia (all of whom affect a Boris-and-Natasha Russian accent). Don Nigro’s one-act play isn’t quite as brilliant as it thinks it is, but it is concise and consistently clever.
After debuting at last year’s Fringe Festival, the Frazee Feet Dancers are back with a new work titled “Somewhere in Between.” Utilizing original written works, newly composed music and contemporary dance, the small but nimble group tells stories about love, life and acceptance. The written pieces, which are read by its author Reilly Hirst, serve as pacing interludes and introductions to each of the seven pieces, which are accompanied live by musician Greg Woodsbie.
With more than 500 shows running in 12 days of Fringe, most folks won’t be likely to choose Shakespeare first.
Candles flickered around the event space off the main dining room at Nox in Village Gate on Wednesday evening, adding to the ambiance of the large, Victorian-esque room. A server flitted around delivering drinks tableside, and a makeshift stage area set apart from tables and chairs was lit with red and blue lights, casting purple rays across the faces of three young black dancers who began the show with a moving interpretive dance set to music thick with bass drumming.
It takes quite a show to upstage a venue, but the folks behind "The Cirque du Fringe" spectacular each year consistently knock it’s capacity audience out. The show is loosely held together by your charming hosts Matt and Heidi Morgan, who wrangle this sideshow as much as they perform alongside attractions from around the globe.
Alt-theater impresario, fringe of The Fringe, and madman John Borek said adios to The MuCCC performance space on Tuesday night after reigning there for 10 years with contrarian and maniacal delight. The attendees in the joint expected this producer of some of the worst theater to pull off the unexpected and Borek didn’t disappoint; he did exactly the expected, which no one expected —- the fools.
When you walk into your first Fringe show and you’re greeted by a tunnel of cast members cheering and offering you high fives, you might suspect you’re in for something a little different.