CATCH TAKES BOK (Catch and Thirdbird): 2016 Fringe review 59

Choreographer-dancer Niall Jones performs at a CATCH event in Brooklyn. Photo by Arion Doerr.

Choreographer-dancer Niall Jones performs at a CATCH event in Brooklyn. Photo by Arion Doerr.

Brooklyn’s CATCH is a showcase for experimental artists in all genres—The Ed Sullivan Show on acid. Its Philly Fringe incarnation in the gymnasium of the old Bok high school in South Philly on Saturday featured seven acts from Philadelphia, New York, and Baltimore. The two things most had in common? Audience participation and inscrutability. Brooke O’Harra’s entire piece consisted of the audience’s unison (but not uniform and therefore, raucous) answers to questions she posed about her act, Philly, and politics.

The prize for most puzzling performance was a tie between Ric Royer’s bandaged man and the transition (or lack thereof) between Erin Markey’s amusing Sarah Bernhard-esque opening routine (about planning her funeral) and closing song (where she played an English baby serenading her stuffed animal). Not surprisingly, the Bok audience was most enthusiastic about the least-experimental acts. They included Jimmy Grzelak and Daniel Park’s interactive Tinder dating bit and Kemar Jewel’s live reenactment of his breakout Voguing Train SEPTA subway YouTube video. Both occurred in the first half. Yes, this show had major pacing problems.

[Bok, 1901 S. Ninth Street] September 17, 2016; fringearts.com/catch-takes-bok.

 

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About the author

Carolyn Wyman

Carolyn Wyman is the author of seven food books and was copy chief at Philadelphia City Paper, before its untimely demise. She currently leads food tours at Reading Terminal Market and writes the Philly Food Finds column about signature dishes at local eateries for philly.com. Learn more at carolynwyman.com.