Last night, I managed to catch three Fringe shows. The first was The Tenant Haimovitz at Metro Studio.
I arrived at the Tenant Haimovitz with no information on what I was about to see. The play is here in Victoria all the way from Tel Aviv, Israel and was translated into English just for us here at the Fringe. The play begins when Haimovitz arrives at his new apartment where there are shutters. Behind the shutters there is a wall, and behind the wall there is another wall. His landlord explains this to him before he signs papers and the apartment is his. Well, his and his six other flatmates. From here, the flatmates proceed to taunt Haimovitz as they take us through a carnival-like tale that eventually will break Haimovitz.
The play is an absurdist piece that is definitely on the Fringe, so to speak. It is something I think everyone can enjoy even if they walk out of the theatre with no idea what they just saw. The play is visually stimulating with the costumes and the choreography. There was a scene with the flatmates teasing Haimovitz, almost like a game of cat and mouse, where they entwined themselves in this tape and moved through the entire scene. The ensemble cast was incredible. They played each of their individual parts very well of course, but for me it was the whole ensemble that stood out. The play was so well put together, even though I walked out pretty confused about the whole thing (it took me about an hour to figure it out), I very much enjoyed the experience.
Next, I made my way down to Fairfield Hall for Home Free!. The play was written by famous playwright Langford Wilson and focuses on two characters, a brother and a sister who are caught between the real world and their fantasy world. They live together in an apartment that looks like a children’s bedroom with their two imaginary friends. They play husband and wife in their fantasy, but take it a bit too far when they actually conceive a baby.
Besides the heavy and quite dark content that makes up the play, it had a lot of strong elements. The set was perfect. Although it was bigger than most Fringe sets, the scattered toys and vintage look gave the play a realistic touch. The actors were fantastic, especially when put into such difficult roles. For me, the content was a bit too disturbing and it took me a while to get past the incest and creepy imaginary world. It was well executed and a great piece of theatre but I would suggest watching something lighthhearted afterwards.
Lastly, I made my way to Langham Court Theatre for Love is for Superbeasts. The play is written by local performer Mily Mumford and takes a look in the minds of two romantically attached serial killers and what makes them tick.
The highlight of the play is the chemistry between the two actors, Mumford, and Joseph Goble. They make the characters believable and allow the audience to emphasize with them despite them being imprisoned for serial murder. The audience is meant to be a room of psychologists and others interested in psychopathy (separated from the “killers” by bullet proof glass) and they did a great job integrating the audience into the story. There was some heavier content towards the middle of the piece, but overall it is an entertaining dark comedy. There is no blood and gore but just a story of romance and breaking down the stereotypes of the “CSI effect.” The storyat its core is one about emotion and relationships that everyone can relate to. I definitely recommend this show.
For more information on any of the three shows, click on their accompanying photos.