Minnesota Fringe Festival 2011

My Fringe

Show reviews by John Heimbuch

William Shakespeare's Rape of Lucrece
Good performance of a rarely seen work by John Heimbuch
Rating: 4 kitties
If you're a fan of Shakespeare's verse, make a point of catching this show. The performers clearly understand the meaning behind the material, and the staging, while minimal, serves the text well - accentuating the dense imagery of the verse, while not competing with it. This performance is decidedly an auditory experience, as Cara Kluver conveys an especially nuanced delivery of Lucrece, with the right balance of clarity and emotion, and Justin Alexander establishes the context of her plight as the narrator and all other characters in the story. Their performances clearly connect to the Elizabethan concept of going to "hear a play". Admittedly, Rape of Lucrece isn't for everyone. It is an Elizabethan iambic poem about rape, honor and death in ancient Rome, but fans of Shakespeare's text, imagery and allegory will find much enjoyment from this production of a rarely-seen work.

Darkly Through the Light Waters: Twin Cities Tales
Compelling narratives told well by John Heimbuch
Rating: 4 kitties
Michael Merriam creates a compelling narrative world using the Twin Cities as the setting for modern stories of magic and myth. In Darkly Through the Light Water, he reads three stories of societal outcasts finding themselves deep in a world of mages, faeries, and otherworld monsters. Told together, they paint a picture of a magical undercurrent flowing beneath the everyday. While the stories are decidedly literary, Merriam has a gift for telling a compelling tales through clear narrative and strong imagery, and one can easily imagine the world he creates. Definitely recommended for a different sort of one-person show.


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