Pared-down San Diego Worldwide Fringe Pageant reveals some early gems – The San Diego Union-Tribune


Organizers of the seventh annual San Diego Worldwide Fringe Pageant have described the 2019 outing as a “transition 12 months” as they work out the kinks of a transfer from downtown San Diego to Balboa Park and the variety of reveals has plummeted from 90 acts two years in the past to only 24 this 12 months.

On Saturday, I caught 5 of this 12 months’s new Fringe reveals, a few of the worldwide imports, some repeat performers with new reveals and an area newcomer. Fringe headquarters this 12 months is the out of doors foyer gallery of the long-shuttered Starlight Bowl and a lot of the reveals happen by June 16 there and in three buildings, the Marie Hitchcock Puppet Theatre, the World Beat Middle and the Centro Cultural de la Raza.

The problem offered right here is proximity. It’s a 10- to 15-minute stroll between the Marie Hitchcock and the Worldbeat and Centro venues. And in the event you’re fringe-binging 5 – 6 steady reveals, it may be a logistical problem. When my schedule repeatedly alternated between Hitchcock and Centro reveals with only a 10-minute break in between, I rented a Lime scooter to make curtains on time. However when a circus present ran 12 minutes late, and my parked scooter was commandeered by one other Lime buyer, I ended up 15 minutes late to a present.

Daytime parking in Balboa Park can be difficult, so arrive early and make use of the park’s new free inexperienced shuttle. The most effective plan is to buy forward and purchase tickets on-line, the place the day by day schedule is offered, because the competition is not producing printed packages. Additionally make sure to examine on-line earlier than you arrive for schedule adjustments.

Advertising and promoting for Fringe competition received off to a late begin this 12 months and competition signage within the park is minimal, however in future years, a well-promoted competition might dramatically profit from the park’s heavy foot visitors of adventure-seeking day-trippers in future years.

Tickets to most reveals are $10, plus a $5 Fringe tag is required for all reveals. Go to

Listed here are mini-reviews for reveals seen Saturday:

Devin Wade as Pup, left, and Christian St. Croix as Remy in “Monsters of the American Cinema” on the 2019 San Diego Worldwide Fringe Pageant in Balboa Park.

(Pam Kragen/The San Diego Union-Tribune)

“Monsters of the American Cinema” by Boy and Monster

For the third 12 months in a row, San Diego playwright Christian St. Croix has written and directed a brand new play at San Diego Fringe. His performs, produced by his firm Boy and Monster, cope with the LGBT and black expertise. St. Croix stars on this 12 months’s play, “Monsters of the American Cinema,” with frequent Boy and Monster collaborator Devin Wade. The touching and humorous two-character play is sincere, well-acted and fascinating. St. Croix performs widower Remy, who runs an outdated drive-in movie show in Santee. He shares a trailer together with his late husband Brian’s 16-year-old son, “Pup,” performed by Wade. Brian died of a heroin overdose 4 years earlier than they usually’re each nonetheless fighting grief. The play’s title comes from the creature options proven on the drive-in and the symbolic monsters that Pup sees in his nightmares. Remy and Pup have developed a heat and loving familial chemistry however their relationship fractures when Remy discovers Pup and his pals have been bullying a homosexual teen at college. Critic’s selection. Remaining performances: 9 p.m. June 12. 7:30 p.m. June 14. four p.m. June 16. Centro Cultural de la Raza, 2004 Park Blvd.

A publicity photo for Huldufugl’s “A Box in the Desert,” a virtual reality theatrical show from Iceland at the 2019 San Diego International Fringe Festival in Balboa Park.
A publicity picture for Huldufugl’s “A Field within the Desert,” a digital actuality theatrical present from Iceland on the 2019 San Diego Worldwide Fringe Pageant in Balboa Park.

(Courtesy picture)

“A Field within the Desert” by Huldufugl

Iceland’s immersive theater firm Huldufugl makes its first look at San Diego Fringe this 12 months, however hopefully not its final. Tickets went quick for “A Field within the Desert,” a 20-minute, one-on-one digital actuality present the place the viewers member wears a digital actuality headset and hand controls and interacts with an actor, recorded sounds and a superbly rendered 360-degree digital atmosphere. To say an excessive amount of concerning the expertise would spoil it, however because the title implies, the viewers member is imprisoned in glasslike field in a rocky desert. A guardian retains watch close by, however is she buddy or foe? Each present is totally different, relying on how the viewers member chooses to work together with the guardian, a disembodied voice and the hand controls. Critic’s selection. Starlight Bowl. Reveals are bought out, however examine with Fringe field workplace for cancellations.

Pat O’Brien stars in the solo play “The Fever” at the 2019 San Diego International Fringe Festival in Balboa Park.
Pat O’Brien stars within the solo play “The Fever” on the 2019 San Diego Worldwide Fringe Pageant in Balboa Park.

(Courtesy of Nichelle Bishop)

“The Fever” carried out by Pat O’Brien

Again for the primary time since successful the “Excellent Solo Efficiency” prize on the 2017 San Diego Fringe fest, ultra-talented Minnesota actor Pat O’Brien returns with Wallace Shawn’s incendiary 1990 solo play “The Fever.” It’s a 60-minute monologue a few comfortably rich and cultured American’s fever-addled emotional wrestle together with his duty to assist the world’s poor. Addled by meals poisoning in a rundown resort in a third-world nation, O’Brien’s character is eaten up from the within out with the competing forces of his proud liberalism and an prosperous life-style he more and more finds irredeemably corrupt. The talky, political and surprisingly modern play could possibly be lethal within the fallacious actor’s palms, however O’Brien is a grasp of the craft and he brings the phrases alive in a wonderfully pitched, fantastically acted and visceral efficiency. Remaining performances: 6 p.m. June 10, 9 p.m. June 11, 7:30 p.m. June 12. Critic’s Selection. Marie Hitchcock Puppet Theatre, 2130 Pan American Plaza, Balboa Park Palisades.

A scene from Tangata Circus Company’s “Real[ise]” at the 2019 San Diego International Fringe Festival in Balboa Park.
A scene from Tangata Circus Firm’s “Actual[ise]” on the 2019 San Diego Worldwide Fringe Pageant in Balboa Park.

(Courtesy picture)

“Actual[ise]” by Tangata Circus Firm

Making their first look at San Diego Fringe this 12 months, this three-member New Zealand circus/theater/comedy troupe delights with an endearing all-ages present about discovery and friendship. Utilizing the normal acrobat acts of contortion and aerial silk (Jackson Cordery), hoop and cord swinging (Laura Oakley) and hand balancing and aerial hoop (Sophia O’Connor), the trio wordlessly acts out the story of three pals whose repetitive, humdrum existence is enlivened by their discovery of some unused circus tools, to not point out a beforehand unseen viewers who, at occasions, are pulled into the present. The year-old troupe’s circus abilities vary from adept to masterful, however their personalities and candy chemistry make the present a winner. Remaining performances: 6 p.m. June 13, 2:30 p.m. June 15, 1 p.m. June 16. Centro Cultural de la Raza.

Zugzwanging, the stage name for actor/playwright Geoffrey Ulysses Geissinger, wrote and stars in “The Chameleon” at the 2019 San Diego International Fringe Festival.
Zugzwanging, the stage title for actor/playwright Geoffrey Ulysses Geissinger, wrote and stars in “The Chameleon” on the 2019 San Diego Worldwide Fringe Pageant.

(Courtesy picture)

“The Chameleon” by Zugzwanging

San Diego actor Geoffrey Ulysses Geissinger, whose stage title is Zugzwanging, wrote and stars on this solo play primarily based on the unusual however true story of Frederic Bourdin, a French impostor who assumed the identities of lots of of kidnapped and lacking youngsters. In 1997, the 23-year-old Bourdin pretended to be teenage abductee Nicholas Barclay of San Antonio, Texas, who had been lacking for 3 years. Regardless of apparent indicators this Frenchman was not 16-year-old Nicholas, Barclay’s household accepted him, maybe to cowl up an excellent higher crime. The backstory of “The Chameleon” is fascinating and Zugzwanging — peforming a confessional monologue because the alternately offended and despondent Bourdin — is a robust and pure actor. However his rapid-fire supply in a generally incomprehensible French accent make it arduous to observe the fast-moving plot. Remaining performances: 9 p.m. June 10, 6 p.m. June 13, 7:30 p.m. June 14. Marie Hitchcock Puppet Theatre.

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