For patriotic theatre-going homosexuals (and really, is there any other kind?), there has been little downtime as of late. Pride, Canada Day, and now the mighty Toronto Fringe Festival have all bled into each other, separated only by a single Monday in which to nurse RuPaul-induced hangovers. Now in its twentieth season, Toronto’s biggest theatre festival takes over the city as of 5:30 p.m. this evening. (And it’s for straights, too!)
Fringing blind is a dangerous thing to do, which is why your friendly neighbourhood Torontoist is here to give you a few helpful tips. First of all, buy a pass. Seeing just one show at the Fringe is like not going to the Fringe at all. Second, follow the buzz. You may not always agree with a review you find on a blog or in a newspaper, but you’ve got a way better chance at striking gold with a show that keeps getting 4 stars than just checking out whatever improv troupe your roommate is stage managing. Finally, be wary of any musical that contains the words “The Musical” in its title. Real musicals don’t do this (think about it).
There are scads of performances you can see at the Fringe, from plays to dance to sketch comedy to god-knows-what. Here are a few things coming your way this evening that sound as though they may be worth a gander:
We loved Jimmy Hogg’s Curriculum Vitae when it played at Fringe last year, so we’re definitely excited about A Brief History of Petty Crime, his latest one-man show on the subject of, you guessed it, petty crime, which plays at Comedy Bar at 8:30 p.m. tonight. At the Glen Morris Studio at the very same time, you could catch JEM ROLLS: or how i stopped worrying and learned to love the mall, another one-man show by perennial Fringe fave Jem Rolls. Those passing by the Fringe Club at 6:00 p.m. might be interested in catching Ladylike, a new one-act play written by Sky Gilbert and starring the country’s favourite transsexual, Nina Arsenault, on the topic of femininity. And those of you who enjoyed last year’s hit Conservatives in Love will probably be interested in checking out Taking Liberties, which will be playing at the JCC at 9:00 p.m. Written by Conservatives scribe Dave Carley, this slightly-more-serious-sounding show features the acting talents of David Fox and Michael Rubenfeld.
That’s all the help we’re going to give you today, but keep checking back for reviews and more. Now we’ll leave you to grab a guide, buy a pass, and let the Fringing begin!
Photo by M.V. Jantzen from the Torontoist Flickr Pool.