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Dylan Lamb

There Is No Isabelle

Location + schedule

U of M Rarig Center Xperimental
330 21st Ave. S, Lower Level

DateTimeMy FringeAccess
Sunday 8/82:30 p.m.  
Monday 8/910:00 p.m.  
Wednesday 8/115:30 p.m.  
Thursday 8/128:30 p.m.  
Saturday 8/145:30 p.m.  
About the show

Contains Adult language, Loud noises/gunshots
For ages 16+
Comedy, Drama, Family, Relationships

Written by Dylan Lamb

Overall rating

A college dropout comes home after years away to tell his out-of-work father and hypochondriac mother that he is going to propose to his longtime girlfriend, Isabelle.

Wait, I thought the title was...

Wickedly funny and shocking in its unraveling, 'There Is No Isabelle' sits a family of liars down at the table and forces them to fight for their lies.

Recommended for audiences 16+ for mature language and themes.

Performing at the U of M Rarig Xperimental,
located at 330 21st Ave S in Minneapolis:

Sun Aug 8th, 2 pm
Mon Aug 9th, 10 pm
Wed Aug 11th, 5:30 pm
Thu Aug 12th, 8:30 pm
Sat Aug 14th, 5:30 pm

Become a fan of 'There Is No Isabelle' on Facebook to receive updates on all things Isabelle!

Wendy Short-Hays

Joseph Kline

Mickey Bloom
Mickey Bloom is a recent NYU graduate from the Tisch School of the Arts. He is a Blake School alum, where he won the Creative Arts Award for Drama. He has been a member of the Walker Art Center Teen Arts Council, as well as working for The Colbert Report, Gossip Girl, and participating in the Warner Bros. Creative Lab. He loves burgers from The Nook, records from The Electric Fetus, and women from Deja Vu. Since Diablo Cody was a former employee of the Vu, he's hoping some of that talent will rub off on him. Literally.

Dylan Lamb
Dylan Lamb is a recent graduate of New York University's Tisch School of the Arts and the recipient of the Chair's Award of Excellence in Dramatic Writing. He has served as a directing intern at the Guthrie Theater and has worked for Warner Brothers Television as part of their Creative Lab. His play "A Man of My Word" was selected as part of NYU's 2010 Festival of New Works; another play, "Alligator Summer", will premiere this August as part of the New York International Fringe Festival. Dylan hopes that 'Isabelle' will serve as initiation into his hometown Minneapolis theater scene, where he aspires to loiter as writer, actor, and director for years to come.

Atif Hashmi
Atif Hashmi is an artist/filmmaker. An art student at the Cooper Union, he has been working as a filmmaker since attending NYU's undergraduate program for film and TV prior. Having been introduced to the world of theatre at a young age, he has been devout in bringing a new aesthetic to the tradition, one inspired by the independent movement in cinema, namely the works of John Cassavettes and Martin Scorsese.

Katie Rye

Jeff Kramer

User reviews

Good and Interesting
by Liz Floyd Follow this reviewer
Rating 4 kitties
I did not understand the ending. Was that the way it was supposed to be?
To explain why a son would lie about an Isabelle though, that was all well written and played out.

There is no isabelle...
by Anders Nerheim Follow this reviewer
Rating 5 kitties
...but there is a lot of talent. To any and all that missed this show (which is probably many as it was sold out 4/5 shows) I am sorry. Hopefully there will be another production in the future. A brilliant dark comedy. No, a brilliant pitch black comedy. It earned my 5 kitties.

Yes, yes, and yes.
by Sydney Bailey Follow this reviewer
Rating 5 kitties
Lucky for me, I was able to see this show twice -- and if able, I'd go again. It's hard to find hit-you-in-the-face productions like this, where you are left with your mouth open long after leaving theatre. Biting humor and beautifully written, Dylan Lamb's 'Isabelle' is a stunning representation of the honesty that eventually forces its way out of all of us. Handled with the perfect amount of irony, pain, absurdity, and laughs, 'Isabelle' is at once terribly honest and entertaining. Bloom, Short-Hays, and Klein deliver outstanding performances, the production and direction are both incredible, the script remarkable -- I can't suggest seeing this play enough. I can't wait to see where Dylan Lamb takes his audiences next.

Adversity Inconqured!
by Lucas Munson Follow this reviewer
Rating 5 kitties
Fantastic! Pitch black comedy is rarely handled so adeptly! Perfectly paced, superbly acted, and wonderfully realized. Furthermore, you couldn't ask for a more intelligent or delectably irreverent script. I would absolutely see a Dylan Lamb piece again- "Isabelle" is the definition of must-see theater.

Brilliant and Troubling
by David Ketterer Follow this reviewer
Rating 5 kitties
The possibilities of a small cast and a spare stage are not exhausted, it seems. "Isabelle" recalls the ferocity, humor, and emotional potency of Edward Albee and David Mamet, but in its finale this play becomes something all its own. I wish mainstream American theater had the bravery and originality Dylan Lamb demonstrates here. A strong cast and a clear-headed production take us there. I can hardly recommend this too highly.

Good show for gawkers, not my cup of tea
by Gabriel Heller Follow this reviewer
Rating 3 kitties
This is not a feel-good show. But I don't believe that all theater needs to be feel-good. What I'm not sure of is whether this is a comedy, even a dark one, though it is billed as one. I usually like dark comedies, but I laughed only a couple times in the first few minutes. In the end I felt like someone who stopped to look at an accident on the freeway and somehow couldn't look away for nearly an hour. That's not to say the production was a train wreck. It was well produced, well acted, props, set, etcetera were absolutely fine. Nor was the script a train wreck. It was well-written, ingeniously constructed in such a way that no character in the show gets to have any fun at all, which had to be difficult. No, a train wreck was what was being portrayed on stage. Given the number of people who slow down to look at accidents on the highway causing me to be late for all number of things, there must be a very large audience for this kind of show. Personally, I drive on by.

Very Intriguing
by Randi Rexroth Follow this reviewer
Rating 4 kitties
Kudos to the cast of three who tackled this difficult script. This was a great show. And by 'great' I mean intriguing, interesting, and thought provoking. Congratulations! I also would recommend buying tickets ahead of time. It was sold out this evening, as well.

Come early to get a seat
by Deb Behringer Follow this reviewer
Rating 5 kitties
I attended opening night and was lucky to get a seat as the show was sold out within 10 minutes of tickets going on sale. Come early enough to be there when the box office opens, as this is one you don’t want to miss. The part of Buddy, played by Mickey Bloom, was the highlight of the show. My attention was repeatedly drawn to him by his realistic reactions to his parent’s bizarre relationship. The show’s dialogue is darkly amusing, to the point where I felt guilty laughing as this unfortunate family’s daily conversations. Not guilty enough, however, to keep silent. I am anxious to see what this playwright might offer us next season.

by Publius McGee Follow this reviewer
Rating 1 kitty
I hated this show. The script was awful, the premise frustrating and painful to watch.

The actors were terrific and the pacing was very tight. One star for that.

by Patrick Harrington Follow this reviewer
Rating 5 kitties
Black comedy is difficult to do well, but a perfect example is on display at the fringe in There Is No Isabelle. The ghosts haunting each of the characters are rendered in a way that is both grandly farcical and heart-wrenchingly close, never drifting into the heavy-handedness that so often proves the downfall of the genre. Bloom, Short-Hays, and Kline are superb, making the family created on the page come to life and forcing the audience to see traces of their own lies in the lies of the characters they've created, even if that is not a pretty picture. This show says more about family dynamics and relationships in under an hour than many shows say in two and a half, and is a stirring example of the kind of talent present at the Minnesota Fringe Festival.

There Is No Isabel
by Marcie Berglund Follow this reviewer
Rating 4 kitties
I was entranced as soon as the snappy dialogue began...I thoroughly enjoyed this show. And would go see a Dylan Lamb show any day. This show made me think about it after the curtain call in the same way that "Inception" made me think. I loved the twist at the end which was unexpected. The character of the mother was not over the top..(as most actresses may be tempted) I believed she could be a real person with "issues". The young man playing the son had excellent comic timing. I believed him..Life is not perfect and it's imperfection and disfunction is the source many, many great plays. "There Is No Isabel" hits us square in the face as we watch this family on it's downward spiral to oblivion. What fun!!

by Brynn Wagner Follow this reviewer
Rating 5 kitties
The first show was sold out, I was lucky to get in! There Is No Isabelle is a great show to begin playwright Dylan Lamb's promising career. Lamb's smart and seamless dialogue kept me enthralled throughout the whole show. The raw, tense, and emotional content had me thinking well after I had left the theater. The cast does an excellent job of portraying these complex characters. I will definitely go again! I cannot wait to see more from this talented playwright!!

Loved it
by Stephanie Geerdes Follow this reviewer
Rating 5 kitties
There Is No Isabelle demonstrated playwright Dylan Lamb's ability to successfully pull off a balance of dark humor and raw emotion. Hashmi and the cast brought Lamb's piece to life in a convincing performance that was both entertaining and thought-provoking. This play is a must-see!

by Mike Plantan Follow this reviewer
Rating 5 kitties
This show was fantastic, funny when it needed to be but overall moving and entertaining. Hashmi's direction was subtle and Bloom's performance outstanding. Theater is not all smiles and puppy dogs, it should also be about relationships and conflict, which this show delivers. If someone watching feels uncomfortable, perhaps that is their issue. To borrow a quote from the people I went to the show with "can we go again, and again, and perhaps a fourth time?" I personally will be on the watch for Lamb's work as an up and coming in the twin cities.

Disturbing but captivating
by Mark Arriola Follow this reviewer
Rating 4 kitties
As a theatre neophyte when I do go, I am more interested in whether I believe the people and dialogue and less interested in the surroundings, lighting, costumes. I found the story believable to a point, was captivated by the acting but found the use of "Fuck" to be unnecessary to the whole story. It was worth the cost of admission.

by Tim Voss Follow this reviewer
Rating 0 kitties
This script was cathartic for somebody. Unfortunately, it was then produced and foisted upon the rest of us. Working out family issues? Take this mess to a professional. To borrow a friend's comment, "I do not wish to see anything by Dylan Lamb ever again."