Skirting the Fringe

from the Fringe FAQ;

Q. What is Fringe?

A. Minnesota Fringe Festival is an annual eleven-day festival of live stage performance and visual arts, including theater, dance and performance art, puppetry, spoken word, storytelling and more. In 2004, there were 176 different performing arts companies and individual artists in 21 venues staging 902 different performances! Plus 17 visual artists in five different exhibitions. Whew.

It ends today and I’m way late in talking about it. That’s because we missed most of it. We caught our first show last night: The Sound of Muzak with Patrick Braucher and Maverick Dansir. Braucher performs as his alter ego, CoCo Fondue, who is a woman with seemingly authentic breasts. Basically it’s an over-the-edge song-and-dance show with CoCo lip synching to various numbers and includes some dialogue from old movies. It was a great show and if CoCo plays a theater near you, I recommend that you go and see her, err, him.

The Concept. We (the audienced) are on an elevator in a department store, traveling from floor to floor. The floors have names like “Scrubbing and Screaming” and “Smokin’, Drinkin’, and Cussin.'” The audience yells out the next floor to stop on. Dansir is the (thoroughly charming and entertaining) elevator operator and sometimes participant in the dance scenes. CoCo’s lip-synching is excellent.

It’s raunchy (uhh, it’s a drag show). Very entertaining too.

My favorite was the finale (last and top floor) where CoCo performed segments from a slew of songs where the female singer was sustaining a note seemingly for eternity. As he acted it out, he would glance at his watch and when done, collapse to the floor in exhaustion only to jump up again as the next tune began.


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