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Vancouver Fringe Festival 2014: Five Single Handers.

I really enjoyed all five of these shows, each performed by a solo actor.

 ...didn't see that coming
written and performed by Beverley Elliott
directed by Kerry Sandomirsky
musical direction by Bill Costin
Happy Good Things Productions
Performance Works, Granville Island
Remaining Shows:
Wed Sep 10 9:25 PM
Fri Sep 12 10:30 PM
Sun Sep 14 7:50 PM

A consummate professional, Beverley Elliott had her audience in the palm of her hand from the minute she walked out on to the stage.  Singing and narrating her autobiographical journey, she had me chuckling through her on-line dating 40 plus dates at the food court in the Brentwood Mall, her revelation that there was another life outside small-town Presbyterian Ontario and gigs in gay bars. Loved her show.

Feisty Old Jew
written and performed by Charlie Varon
developed with and directed by David Ford
Performance Works, Granville island
Remaining Shows:
Thu Sep 11 10:10 PM
Sat  Sep 13  4 PM
Sun Sep 14 2:30 PM

Charlie Varon is a great storyteller and his tale of crusty 83 year old Bernie Schein and his surfing adventure was funny and poignant at the same time. Bernie from Brooklyn has been living in San Francisco for 60 years and is now in a Jewish retirement home. Tired of waiting for a cab, he hitches a ride with three young people who are heading ot to go surfing. He is the most feisity of the characters that Varon has been developing. Varon also tells another story about a lady resident of the home, whose name I am embarrassed to say I forgot to write down but I loved her story too.

 Eating Pasta off the Floor
written and performed by Maria Grazia Affinito
False Creek Gym, Granville Island
Remaining Shows:
Thur Sep 11  8:45 PM
Sat  Sep 13  5:15 PM
Sun Sep 14 3:30 PM

With her beautifully sung  musical theme of "con te partiro" (with you I will leave) Maria Affinito takes us with her to Italy on her journey of discovery that helps her understand the past of her infuriating, embarrassing but always loving Italian mother. With ease she conjures up a host of characters from the supermarket cashier to whom her mother wants to sell her marriageable daughter, to the large multi generation Italian family back in her mother's home town. The story of this mother-daughter relationship will tug at the heart strings, and the funny bone of anyone who has ever been a parent - and somehow we all remain children to our parents no matter how old we may be.
Loved her show too.

 Lord of the Files
written and performed by Lesley Tsina
False Creek Gym, Granville Island
Remaining Shows:
Wed Sep 10  6:45 PM
Sat  Sep 13  9:00 PM
Sun Sep 14 5:30 PM

Employed by a company that makes cell phone rings and graphics for mobiles, Tsina finds herself among the employees who are left, when the company begins an active downsizing program. Fiddling while Rome burns, the Human Resources lady tries all sorts of gimmicks to keep up morale, while Tsina finds herself more concerned about an office crush than keeping her job. Anyone who has ever worked in a corporation or a public institution will appreciate her story.

Tes
written and performed by Steve Larkin
Revue Stage, Granville Island
Remaining Shows:
Thu Sep 11  6:45 PM
Sat Sep13  5:15 PM
Sun Sep 14 3:00 PM

It was very interesting to have the tale of Tess of the d'Urbervilles told from the perspective of a teenage boy, seduced by his school teacher and then accused and imprisoned for rape. At first I found Larkin's broad Midland accent a bit of a challenge but soon settled in and became totally engrossed in his performance. To set the scene of Tes's home environment, there was a continuous very low level background of voices as if a radio or  television was playing. It took a while for me .. and others.. to realize that this was part of the sound design, and not conversation over an inadvertently open microphone, and I found it very distracting.  But that was my only caveat about this play which I otherwise enjoyed.

 

 

Saturday September 6th

2:35 PM: ...didn't see that coming (Performance Works)

4:35 PM: Feisty Old Jew (Performance Works)

8:15 PM: The Chariot Cities (Revue Stage)

Sunday September 7th

12:30 PM: No Tweed Too Tight: Grant Canyon Mystery (Waterfront Theatre)

 2:15 PM: The Unfortunate Ruth.  (Waterfront Theatre)

(3:45 PM The Masks of Oscar Wilde (Revue Stage)) may see this again depending on timing.

 5.00 PM: Eating Pasta off the Floor (False Creek Gym)

7.00 PM: Lord of the Files (False Creek Gym)

 

- See more at: http://www.reviewfromthehouse.com/vancouver-fringe-festival-2014#sthash....

Saturday September 6th

2:35 PM: ...didn't see that coming (Performance Works)

4:35 PM: Feisty Old Jew (Performance Works)

8:15 PM: The Chariot Cities (Revue Stage)

Sunday September 7th

12:30 PM: No Tweed Too Tight: Grant Canyon Mystery (Waterfront Theatre)

 2:15 PM: The Unfortunate Ruth.  (Waterfront Theatre)

(3:45 PM The Masks of Oscar Wilde (Revue Stage)) may see this again depending on timing.

 5.00 PM: Eating Pasta off the Floor (False Creek Gym)

7.00 PM: Lord of the Files (False Creek Gym)

 

- See more at: http://www.reviewfromthehouse.com/vancouver-fringe-festival-2014#sthash....