There is something lurking in the Undercroft of the Mount Vernon Methodist Church, and it is waiting… to… get… YOU!
At least, that’s how you just might feel after hearing Beyond the Page Theatre Company retell their versions of classic urban legends in their first foray into Capital Fringe.
Urban Legends recounts some of the greater- (and lesser-) known stories that circulate among teenagers throughout the country. Remember Bloody Mary, trapped in her mirror? She’s there. Chain letters from beyond the grave? Check. The woman driving home, terrified because someone is following her and won’t stop flashing his brights? That’s there too.
The show is based on urban legends we all know and love – or at least shiver when hearing. The connective tissue weaving the stories together is Masterpiece Theatre-style introductions to short versions of the legends acted out by the students. Some of these group pieces are stronger than others, but the real gems of the evening are the solo, campfire-style stories told by individual actors that come in between each of the main tales.
Each actor has their moment to shine, but especially good were the renditions of “The Babysitter”, “Killer in the Backseat”, “The Black Eyed Children”, and “Clown Sculpture”. Another great moment came when the “Off Color Professor” seemingly missed his exit and ran into the wall. If it was planned, it was genius, and if not, it was well played all the same.
My award for favorite story of the evening, however, has to go to the one about a certain little cabin in the middle of bear country and the odd paintings a weary hunter found hanging on its walls…
by Theatre Arts students of West Potomac High School
at Mount Vernon United Methodist Church – Mountain
900 Massachusetts Ave NW
Washington, DC, 20001
Details and tickets
Urban Legends is Beyond the Page’s first foray into Capital Fringe, but these students’ presence is even more impressive: it was not all that long ago that the theatre program at West Potomac High School (where the group is based) was in a shambles. Urban Legends caps off an impressive season for the troupe, and both individually and as a group they will be well worth watching in years to come.
When you go to sleep-away camp, there is a curious time after lights out but before anyone has fallen asleep. It’s the time when flashlights come out and stories are whispered back and forth over the sound of insects chirping outside. Everything is quiet, and still… and then the story reaches its climax, and everyone screams.
If you loved that time – then Urban Legends is for you.