Minnesota Fringe Festival 2011

My Fringe

Show reviews by Susan Knutson

Grim Walks Tonight
Tight and dynamic ensemble by Susan Knutson
Rating: 5 kitties
The Lab theater is a perfect venue for the raw energy of this tight group of dancers. Interesting, evocative choreography. Very hip and urban.

The Sometimes Grace of Saint Simon of the Water
Memorable Solo Performance by Susan Knutson
Rating: 5 kitties
Matt Ouren gives a convincing emotional performance as Simon, a young man struggling to make sense of the tensions between body and mind, piety and passion, love and lust. Eschewing a simple answer to these complex dichotomies, the play nevertheless achieves resolution. Even when I wondered where the threads were leading, Ouren kept me intrigued through a series of rapid mood changes, well reflected in his face and body language. A memorable performance by a talented young actor.

Red Resurrected
Strong Storytelling by Susan Knutson
Rating: 5 kitties
Like everyone else, I have nothing but raves for this spectacular show. The acting, staging and singing all contribute to a strong narrative that resonates with authentic emotion. A must for anyone like me who loves fairy tales, fables, and folklore.

Hauser Dance Unraveled
Interactive and Expressive by Susan Knutson
Rating: 5 kitties
A thoroughly enjoyable and well executed show! The range of ages and body sizes is refreshing. All the dancers are strong communicators--not just with movement but also with clear facial expressions. I loved their interaction with each other and the various props, especially the chairs and sheets. Kudos to the box dancer for an intense performance although the piece felt a little longer than necessary. Overall, an ode to the sheer joy of movement!

Tapsized: A Journey of the Bastard Child
Dance is Life by Susan Knutson
Rating: 5 kitties
This is my kind of dance -- energetic, fun, part of a lifestyle. I loved that the band (fabulous!) was part of the show and interacted with the dancers. I loved the intergenerational cast, especially the two more experienced women who totally tore up the dance floor with their duet. Also, the guys in the shower were hilarious! (How can anyone say they can't act?) The plot was sufficient to hold the show together and give everyone an excuse to dance! ! ! Thoroughly enjoyable.

Illusion
More than Magic by Susan Knutson
Rating: 4 kitties
This polished show provided far more variety than I expected. In fact, I wasn't too impressed by the magic tricks (one was obvious to me) but loved several other things: The story about the uncle and accompanying illusion were riveting, the slo-mo was hysterically funny, and the juggling was charming. Jared has a great stage presence and a talented crew. I agree that the pace was occasionally slow but wouldn't hesitate to go see him again.


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