Updated August 23
Him & Her
Don't be fooled by the ampersand. Him & Her is not one but actually two
Updated August 22
Perfection is elusive if not impossible when shows can visit their
performance space only once before their debut, as is often the case at
Death of Frank
Sum of Us Theatre Company
Stephen Belber wants everyone to know that he wrote Death of Frank in 1997,
before he wrote Tape, before The Laramie Project, before fame could allow
him to be ashamed of his early work.
Before the Fire
Sadly, Before the Fire suffers from a problem it cannot control: a cramped,
Laura McKenzie Feels Like Makin' Love
There is no lovemaking in Laura McKenzie's one-woman show, but people who
come on account of the saucy title will not be disappointed-McKenzie's
talent, energy, and comic sensibility make for a fun night of theater.
Updated August 20
Untimely Ripped Entertainment
If Springsteen's The Rising brought hope of a post-9/11 culture that has more
to offer than Alan Jackson songs, this decidedly amateurish deconstruction
of our paranoia just killed it.
We're From the Fifties
Liberal fifties rockers the Extra-Ordinaries were obliterated when the plane
containing Buddy Holly, Richie Valens, and the Big Bopper crashed on them.
Matt & Ben
Chase Murray Brawl
If any show this year embodies the spirit of Fringe, it's this giddily
inspired comedy starring ballsy girls (one of them Indian) as Matt Damon and
Ben Affleck on the fateful evening when they're living off Pringles and Good
Will Hunting literally falls in their laps.
The Joys of Sex
Boasting a seasoned cast from Rent and Bat Boy and clever lyrics like "Thrill
your fella / Spread him with Nutella" from lyricist Melissa Levis (Wendy
Wasserstein's niece), this is the one Fringe musical that is likely to draw
a matinee crowd.
Resa Fantastiskt Mystisk
Burglars of Hamm and the
Ghost Road Company
If you buy director Todd Merrill's impassioned curtain speech,
nineteenth-century Swedish playwright Lars Mattsun (Whether Wind Wither You
and The Toothless Otter) was the real genius behind the work of "the great
corrupter," August Strindberg.
Theater and Her Kind Productions
It's a heart-wrenching story-at a routine check-up months into her first
pregnancy, Susan McLaughlin Karp learns that the daughter inside her is
Project C: Is This a Dream?
It's quite uncommon for someone to say a Fringe show should be longer, but
we're going to suggest just that.
Beat: A Play on Words Based on the life and Writings of Allen Ginsberg and
the Beat Generation
Jug o' Wine Productions and S.D. Wagner
Watch out, parents: With his intelligent historical play, Kelly Groves is
making Allen Ginsberg appealing and accessible to yet another generation.
Daniel J. Kells Productions
John Kuntz is annoying, not to mention disgusting, disturbing, and repulsive.
But he's also hilarious.
Updated August 16
Delicious Theater Group
A man takes a suicidal leap off a bridge and falls through the roof of Jane's
house while she's preparing breakfast. ("It was a pretty strange morning,"
Jane tells the newspaper.)
Updated August 14
Old School Theater Company
Two Golden Age radio plays are freed from their audio-only captivity. While
it's a decent idea, both were better off before.
Updated August 13
Five Frozen Embryos and The Sleepers
Two accomplished playwrights team up to give audiences two splendid one-acts.
The first, by David Greenspan, looks at female body rights.
I Kissed Dash Riprock!
It's the dream you always wished would come true: A movie star falls in love
with you, and on top of being gorgeous on-screen, he's smart, funny, and
Second Amendment Club
The program warns you: this performance contains material that some may find
objectionable, and Martin, the suburban teenager in Morris's
thought-provoking play about the anger that motivates school violence, is
racist, sexist, and full of hate.
It's Not My Fault, It Was on Fire When I Got There
A confusing not-really-there plot, so-so acting and continuous technical
difficulties make this two-person, 23-character show a displeasing
The Last Nickel
Lori Brigantino and Living Room Arts
This spare, surprising portrait of sisterhood in tragedy may at first seem
better suited for Oprah than for Fringe, but the emotional revelations it
serves up are biting and raw.
Naked Girls Drinking!
Bon Bock Productions
Sadly, there's no nudity and a whole lot of dumb, drunken men in this
unsatisfying comedic riff on downtown theater.
Out to Lunch: Kill the Campers
The kind of torturous, pointless venture in absurdity that makes one wish
Samuel Beckett had never been born, Out to Lunch trudges through a brunch
They're advertised as "short plays for summer's short attention span," but
Pick-Up 6's one-acts aren't short enough.
6 Story Building
The Brain Collection
This collection of seven one-acts is like a roller coaster--it starts out
slow, maybe even dull, but then it builds and builds, and by the end, it's a
Updated August 5
The Bizarro Bologna Show
Dan Piraro, creator of the comic strip "Bizarro," emerges from the funny pages to speak honestly about his life. Since this is Fringe, he will do so with puppets.
Death of Frank
Sum of Us
Farmers in love: The salt of the earth is shaken in the latest drama by the busy Stephen Belber (Tape, The Laramie Project).
Man of Infinite Desire
In Christina Nicosia's solo drama, translated and mangled by Web-based language software, an absent-minded Beelzebub lectures about alchemy and Faust.
An aspiring Urinetown and modern Ballad of Reading Gaol: Two jingle-writing admen get trapped in an evil "consumer test mall" and sing! Sing! Sing!
The year-old troupe, comprising Arab-American stage veterans, riffs on Arab life in the U.S. since the September 11 attacks.
You guessed it: a modern adaptation of the Aristophanes comedy. This time it's 2045, the world is about to end (again), and only an abstinent glam-rocker can save us all.
Men Do Not Go to War Over Women
Letting Helen of Troy off the hook, Gina Landor's adaptation of an Andrew Rissik radioplay made London's The Guardian critic rave that the script "makes you catch your breath."