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JUG-BABY: AN AUTOBIOGRAPHY (Transmissions Theatre): A jar of surprises

There is magic and wonder in the world, and not the cheap kind from childhood fairy tales, but the hard earned kind from adults who speak in their own true voices and dare to tell us how we’re all put together.

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DOUBLE BATMAN (Frank Perri): 2014 Fringe Review 87

Frank Perri’s DOUBLE BATMAN is a powerful monologue of loss, withdrawal, and reemergence basically explaining why he is doing a powerful monologue of loss, withdrawal, and reemergence.

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POE-A-THON (Night Hawks): Fringe Review 85

“Hammy, I said—a bit of a ham.” that’s how a character in POE-A-THON describes Edgar Allan Poe, speaking volumes about the approach taken by Night Hawks.

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BROKEN PEOPLE (David DelBianco): Fringe Review 82

There is quite a lot of yelling in BROKEN PEOPLE, the new show by local actor and playwright David DelBianco.

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MOUNT AIRY HOME COMPANION (Saint Mad): Fringe Review 73

MOUNT AIRY HOME COMPANION borrows more than the title from its public radio namesake, capturing the lovingly corny spirit of Garrison Keillor and company.

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SISTERS OF ELLERY HOLLOW BY STEPHEN SPOTSWOOD (RHolt Productions): Fringe Review 60

The show, which is all about loss and violence in a dark corner of the world, is too bright – it has no real darkness to it at all

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ALTERNATIVE THEATRE FESTIVAL (iNtuitions Experimental Theatre): Fringe Review 57

Playwrights are do not come fully formed. Directors have to start somewhere. And the Philly Fringe Festival is traditionally a great place for artists to take their first artistic steps.

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UNDERGROUND EPISODES (Run Boy Run Productions): Fringe Review 52

UNDERGROUND EPISODES carries us from Olney to past City Hall and then back again in poems, half-spoken and half-recited, sometimes direct and sometimes inscrutable.

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KIM COLES: OH, BUT WAIT . . . THERE’S MORE! (Kim Coles / Dir. Scotch Ellis Loring): Fringe Review 46

The actor, best known for work on “Living Single,” opens it all up with a solo show that is hilarious, hopeful, and surprisingly heartfelt.

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MAD BLOOD AND OTHER BEAUTIES (A Plague On Both Your Houses): Fringe Review 44

This is no mere retelling of Romeo and Juliet. What we get is a conjuring, a blood-letting, a full-throated cry of rage.

SEPHRO: EARTH’S REVENGE (Fantasy Weavers): Fringe Review 23

Imagine if Frank Herbert’s “Dune” had been adapted not by David Lynch but instead by the Mummers. That’s not too far off from what we get with SEPHRO: EARTH’S REVENGE.

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OEDIPUS THE MUSICAL (Van.Martin Productions): Fringe Review 17

Van.Martin Productions lampoons the Sophocles classic with their silly OEDIPUS THE MUSICAL, which ties together Greek tragedy, #YOLO, and herpes into one madcap package.

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RAINBOWTOWN (Two Ducks Theatre Company): Fringe Review 16

This short musical is aimed at really young ones, but its message (and its sense of humor) is universal. Two actors and one musician run through a simple story, and model a gamut of moods and behaviors for their young audience. Queen Annie (the captivating Amanda Curry) is on a journey to find a new place to build her castle. She visits a series of emotionally-themed towns and connects with a local resident in each.

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WE ARE PROUD TO PRESENT (The University of the Arts): Fringe Review 15

You know that moment when playfighting becomes real? Everything is nice and amusing until a pulled punch actually connects, and then laughter gives way to the sounds of a struggle. Things become very serious awfully quickly once people start getting hurt for real. That’s the main thrust of WE ARE PROUD TO PRESENT A PRESENTATION ABOUT THE HERERO OF NAMIBIA, FORMERLY KNOWN AS SOUTHWEST AFRICA, FROM THE GERMAN SUDWESTAFRIKA, BETWEEN THE YEARS 1884-1915.

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(SOME) LOVE AND (SOME) INFORMATION (Ira Brind School and Headlong Dance Theater): Fringe Review 9

Staging a Happening used to be straightforward. To jangle the audience out of the role of The Observer, you redefined art from what-I-the-Artist-do-up-here into what-is-happening-between-you-and-me. You and the audience would…

K. O. DelMarcelle and Gina Martino in THE TOUGHEST BOY IN PHILADELPHIA.

THE TOUGHEST BOY IN PHILADELPHIA (Iron Age Theatre): Gender confusion

While THE TOUGHEST BOY IN PHILADELPHIA has something important to say, the material is arranged so carelessly that I’ll be damned if I can tell you what it is.

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THE TWELVE DATES OF CHRISTMAS (Act II): My true love came to me?

Overbearing relatives, forced merriness, the same damn songs playing over and over and then over again—Christmas can be a real pain in the toches. Depicting the next year of her life, Lakis plays (almost) all the characters in this 90 minute show, without a single break.

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MAKESHIFT (Murmuration Theater): 60-second review

Strange games are afoot upstairs at Plays and Players. Not light or fun games, either—we’re talking full-on Don’t-talk-about-our-son-Martha! games here. Murmuration Theater’s new play MAKESHIFT throws us right into the middle of two different stories, and figures we’re smart enough to figure out what’s going on. The show doesn’t dole out much information, and when it does, it’s timed for maximum effect. Once you get enough to realize the show’s central conceit (which is quite nice, and unfolds so organically that I’d hate to spoil it), the earlier scenes come into better focus and make more sense.

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[78] STUDY HALL (Philly Improv Theater): Fringe review

The conceit of Philly Improv Theater’s STUDY HALL is that we the audience are a bunch of prep school students, awaiting a lecture in an auditorium. A few uniformed “classmates”…

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[77] BAT BOY: THE MUSICAL (Life Theater Company): Fringe review

Weekly World News is known for a lot of things, but heartfelt sentiment isn’t one of them. Surprising, then, that the tabloid birthed BAT BOY: THE MUSICAL, an honest-to-goodness tearjerker…