This is my 13th Montreal Fringe in a row. I have teenaged the Fringe experience. I have Fringed in the rain. I have Fringed in the sunshine. I have Fringed in hail and tornado warnings (2002 and I think 2006!) Every few years, I Fringe amongst soccer fans. I know what the next ten days entail. I have my survival kit ready: Flask – Check! Toothbrush and underpants – Check! Phone charger (remembering the no juice debacle of Zoofest last year) – Check! For the rest, you can always hit the street sale in a pinch. The amount of people rocking a clean volunteer shirt because they have no clean clothes left should not be surprising, but it always is. That bit of dirty trivia will come in handy by next Wednesday, when your spirit has been shattered and you feel that Beer Tent Lyfe is all that you have left to live for.
But in the here and now, I still bright eyed and bushy tailed, having done some detoxing hot yoga in preparation of the beating that I am about to give my liver. And I am seeing shows. So many shows.
Mark Twain in the year 3000/Einstein Through Time
Is it sketch? Is it burlesque? Is it madness? It seems to be all three. Mark Twain in the year 3000/Einstein Through Time by Tessa J. Brown and Gina Freeman, who together form the sketch troupe Philosofish, is a short 30 minute punny interlude. The two great (white) men are scheduled together at the fringe festival at the same time, which of course will rip a hole in the fringe time continuum. With a diabolical space villain chasing them and both of their ships damaged, what are a couple of geniuses to do? Ask the ladies to save their bacon, of course. AP
Shy Shy in Space
Shy Shy Schullie’s voice is flawless. A staple of the Montreal Burlesque scene, her show, Shy Shy in Space is an adorable throw back to a more innocent and hopeful time. It’s 1963, and just so as to not be outdone by those dastardly Russians, who sent an opera signer into space, NASA sends their own national treasure songstress, Shy Shy Schullie, to perform the very first jazz concert from the stars. I don’t want to spoil it, but between the technical difficulties and alien encounters, this show is a delight. Special shout-out to Josh Furman, saxophonist in the live 5-piece band, for his excellent solo during Life on Mars. AP
The Famous Haydell Sisters Comeback Tour
The Famous Haydell Sisters, from Portland, Oregon, should be getting bigger audiences. Musically talented as all heck, this country comeback tour full of innuendo and pathos is a fun fast-moving hour of good down home country fun. The basis of this is that a couple of sisters who haven’t seen each other in 20 years are getting back on the road after their respective meltdowns, and Lord only knows they have some stuff to work through. Standout songs include The Woodpecker Song is both endearing and creepy, considering that grandpa taught it to them, and Your Broken Heart is No Excuse to be an Asshole hits close to home… it’s a lovely show. Come see it AP
Shirley Gnome: Real Mature
Shirley Gnome: Real Mature was probably the show that I was the most excited for today and she did not disappoint. Like last year, her brand of filthy songstressing was on point. Whereas the Haydell Sisters were subtle, Shirley is a bomb blowing up in your face. Bring your filthy minded girlfriends as Shirley litters the stage with vagina talk so honest and true that you will recognize the ever living heck out of it, and cry laughing in recognition. See this for everytime he floats the idea of a threesome that you aren’t into. Or for everytime that you wake up with mystery glitter. Or if you want to learn brand new ways of using a kazoo… AP
All shows are playing at Petit Campus (57 Prince Arthur E) as part of the Montreal Fringe Festival 2015. For showtimes, click HERE.