Weirdest thing and other impossible Fringe questions

How’s it going, Capital Fringe fans? As we get ready for this final Fringe weekend (Capital Fringe closes Sunday, July 27) we thought we’d check in with all the Fringe-goers. We came up with the questions, and our writers have started us off.  We’ll be looking for your answers in the Comments below.

1) What’s the weirdest thing you saw at Fringe?

Free performance. Click for details

a man on the sidewalk dousing himself in Body Fantasies perfume. (Jen Clements)
A chorus of improvising dancers wearing full-bodied spandex – Name Game (Richard Barry)
The band at the Tent stage, men that looked like they could be the backup band of Hedwig of Angry Inch fame. They put on a damn good show though. (Michael Kelly)
A girl at press preview night walking around the tent in character who started crying blood. It was incredible makeup work, but SO weird and creepy. I didn’t find out what show she was from, but I wish I had. (Megan  Downey)
Coosje , the singing Pear in this music-theatre piece about pop art couple Claes Oldenburg and his wife/collaborator Coosje (Susan Galbraith)
All the old people at Cabaret XXX: Everybody F*cking Dies. Including me. (Tim Treanor)
(Jai Williams) Nothing is ever weird to me coming from Fringe

swarms2) What really blew your mind this year?

Hector Reynoso in The Old Man Never Let It Go brought an entire performance together with his bare hands. No words, just really convincing movement. (Richard Barry)
The swarms of people at Fort Fringe, at seemingly all hours of the evening and night. (Jen Clements)
Diversity of both the productions and the audiences they brought in. (Michael Kelly)
The energy everyone kept up through some serious summer heat. (Megan Downey)
The number of shows available to see (Jai Williams)
I did not see any clunkers. Even the wonkiest show I saw (the improvisational Séance) and the one that needed the most work (Self-Portrait of a Sinner) still had redeeming value (Jeff Walker)

3) What do you know now, you didn’t know before Fringe started?

fringepizzaIt’s a LONG walk from Union Station to Atlas! (Jeff Walker)
All of the button deals you can clean up on! (Richard Barry)
Bring an umbrella with you. Always. (Jen Clements)
Postcards make great fans. (Michael Kelly)
How tight-knit the community is (Jai Williams)
I expected most shows would be immature spoofs and over-the-top comedies. I was delighted that almost everything I saw represented a serious commitment by its creators and were experiments across different genres, disciplines, and tones. (Susan Galbraith)
This is something I learned not as a reviewer but as a producer: the importance of marketing. And, as much as I hate to say it, the primacy of print media. I ran into the playwright/performer/producer for I F-d Your Country and she said basically the same thing. Marketing was a bear. An exhausting bear. (Tim Treanor)

Dacyl Acevedo

Dacyl Acevedo

4) Which Fringe performer(s) would you most like to hang out with and why?

Since I did buy a ticket for the raffle at Ten Principles, a storytelling take on Burning Man, that would get me a free ticket to Black Rock City, I obviously wouldn’t mind partying with those guys. (Richard Barry)
The cast of Tournament. Their show was so much fun and such a kick-ass extravaganza of action and comedy, I think they have to be a pretty randy group after a few drinks. (Jeff Walker)
Kate Robards of Mandarin Orange, because I haven’t seen her since she went to China. (Jen Clements)
The clowns of Balloon Plays seem like pretty awesome, if not hysterical, people. (Michael Kelly)
The cast of That Kind of Girl. They seemed to be having so much fun on stage, and to be so kind and open, that I can only imagine they’re great people to hand out with. Plus, they were all super funny. (Megan Downey)
Dacyl Acevedo (Will Work For). Amazingly talented and creative with a hint of subtlety. (Jai Williams)
Shannon Berry, librettist for Fire in Water, because there are so few serious librettists and she seemed genuinely curious about other music-theatre makers. I happened to like her and her colleagues, co-composers Michael Oberhauser and Terrence Johns. I also would really like to hang out with Andrew Potter, musician, street performer, and creator of The Road to High Street. He just seems so laid back and cool, a guy who could make a girl get on the back of a motor cycle or in a spray painted VW bus and head out to San Francisco for the adventure of a lifetime. (Susan Galbraith)

The cast of Walken in His Shoes from Tuscon, AZ: (l-r) Brandon Howell, Michael Howell, Stephanie Howell, Ruben Rosthenhausler and  Luke Howell

The cast of Walken in His Shoes from Tuscon, AZ

5) Which Fringe shows are you sorry you missed and why?

R+ J: Star-Cross’d Deathmatch. Shakespeare + drinking + being in a bar? Bloody brilliant. (Michael Kelly)
Balloon Plays. Because balloons, of course!  (Richard Barry)
Walken in His Shoes. Because everyone needs more cowbell. (Jen Clements)
(Megan Downey)
Walken in his Shoes– the press preview was really amusing, and reviews were good.
Districtland . DC is a unique place to locate employment as well as C- as post college is always interesting (Jai Williams)
Sorry I have to miss Pat O’Brien in The Fever which sounds quite challenging. (Susan Galbraith)
Walken in His Shoes . Sounds like a truly entertaining show  (Jeff Walker)

6) which Fringe shows would you see again and why?

click for tickets

The Duchess of Malfi

Hands down, The Duchess of Malfi. We Happy Few floored me with this show. This play was given a treatment that I would stack up with many classical titles and productions I have seen in the last few seasons. Acting, direction, lighting – and the use of darkness – all came together for a full evening of Jacobean revenge splendor and great theatre. (Jeff Walker)
Song of Myself: The Whitman Project. Love the poem, loved the interpretation. (Richard Barry)
The Monster Songs because I want to hear the numbers that were cut due to technical difficulties, and
Relationsh!t because I have a suspicion that the show is even better with a more robust audience than the 10:15pm crowd on a Thursday had to offer.  (Jen Clements)
Medea’s Got Some Issues in particular, because of Lisa Hodsoll’s performance is absolutely stunning. (Michael Kelly)
That Kind of Girl it was powerful and uplifting.  (Megan Downey)
Will Work For as it captured the employment turmoil the country is experiencing; Letters To and From Me as the troupe did a great job in attempting to highlight stereotypes; and The Dish as a foodie and the industry I work in, the performance was spot on. (Jai Williams)
A Fire in Water and any new music-theatre piece, especially opera, because it takes much more than one sitting to appreciate fully all that the work has in its musical themes, structures, character development, etc.  I would also like to trace what become of the young Baltimore-based company Small Batches. I sense there is a genuine impulse there motivating its director and certainly a strong loyalty to the vision and commitment by the company’s performers. (Susan Galbraith)

Five words that describe Fringe:
A Whitman Sampler of Theatrical Goodies  (Jeff Walker)
Local but far-out.  (Richard Barry)
Always throwing off expectations.  (Michael Kelly)
Slapdash spaces full of fun.  (Megan Downey)
Enriching everyone’s ego  (Jai Williams)
A leap from what’s comfortable  (Chase Meacham)
Cool performances and hot licks.   (Susan Galbraith)

Now that you’re thinking about your Fringe experience this year, leave us a comment below, and don’t forget to
vote your Fringe favorites in the Theatermania poll!

Lorraine Treanor About Lorraine Treanor

Lorraine Treanor has been editor of DC Theatre Scene since 2006. She has produced plays and concerts in her hometown of Chicago, and twice in the Capital Fringe festival. Her daughter Nina Norris is an artist working in Chicago. Life's a blast because she shares it with writer Tim Treanor.


  1. Jeff Walker says:

    Chris Niebling,
    What an offer!!! I am honored, humbled and excited at the prospect. Sadly, however, I will be away for about a week. I know Fringe is about finished, but I would take a rain check faster than you can say “Hai Karate!” I will head over to your website and seek out email addresses. Thanks again for a great show and for the invitation.

  2. Hey Jeff Walker!
    Want to find out how right you are? Live Action Theatre and the cast of The Tournament would like to buy you a drink (or three) after our show Saturday night! Drop us an email!



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