2017 Toronto Fringe Picks: Part 3

16 Jul

A couple of late highlights from this year’s Toronto Fringe Festival!

04-27-2017-194154-5322Delirium / Moonlight after Midnight

One would not typically lump the reviews of more than one show together, but this writer had the pleasure of seeing Fringe regular Martin Dockery’s two entries in this year’s festival almost literally back to back, making for a unique and compelling experience greater than the sum of the parts.

The first of the two, Delirium, is Dockery’s solo storytelling show, composed of three pieces; one about being separated from his then-girlfriend at the customs gate of Pearson airport, one about his short-lived experience as a restauranteur at the legendary Burning Man festival, and one about the migration of the Monarch butterfly. On paper they are seemingly disparate topics, but there is a thoughtful and bittersweet connective tissue that becomes more and more evident as he delves into each one in his unique and crackling motor-mouthed manner.

05-26-2017-143748-9265The second is Moonlight after Midnight, which he performs with his real-life wife Vanessa Quesnelle. Set in an ocean-front hotel room on a starry night, this enigmatic story about the meeting of two strangers (or are they?) shifts effortlessly through multiple layers of reality, leaving the audience in a delightful haze. Dockery (in a more restrained performative state than in Delirium) and Quesnelle, perhaps not surprisingly, play off each other wonderfully; they are in perfect sync as the emotional and power dynamics between their two characters ebbs and flows.

To talk about how these two works overlap thematically would potentially be lessen the emotional impact of either one and spoil the experience. Suffice to say, both are powerful and moving works that remind one of how fortunate we all are to be alive.

No comments yet

Leave a Reply