A Venture Through The 12th Annual New York Fringe Fest

Get out your coolie hats and your bloody Popeye clothes.

Music also featured rather inexplicably in Tiny Feats of Cowardice, a cabaret-cum- confessional by New Georges founder Susan Bernfield, in which she details her fears: airplanes, malaria, toasters, violin teachers, cows, and (more problematically) performing in front of an audience. It's unclear why Bernfield half sings the script—the sung bits don't differ much from the spoken—or why she required a three-man backing band, but it's an affecting piece. As is Too Much Memory, though it seems misplaced at the Fringe: Written by Keith Reddin and Meg Gibson and nicely performed by an estimable cast (Laura Heisler, Louis Cancelmi, Martin Moran, etc.), this smart, colloquial "adaptation of an adaptation of a retranslation" of Antigone would seem a likely Off-Broadway candidate.

Pleasantly insensitive: China—The Whole Enchilada
Dixie Sheridan
Pleasantly insensitive: China—The Whole Enchilada

As I'm still attempting some post-vacation equanimity, the less said about Heaven Forbid(s)!, Choose Your Own Play, and the unspeakably twee Velvet Scratch—Voyage of No Return, the better. Apparently the Fringe has some fine shows I haven't seen—other Voice reviewers have enjoyed The Alice Complex, Julius Caesar, and The Grecian Formula. But I'd just as soon rest up and steel myself for next year's fest. After five Fringe-filled days, I'm tempted to echo Jacqueline Susann's dying words: "Let's get the hell out of here, doll."

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