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Posts Tagged ‘Festival’

Who’s Who in High Pressure Fire Service, part one

Posted February 13th, 2019
by Raina Searles, Marketing Manager

Opening this March, High Pressure Fire Service (or more colloquially, HPFS, pronounced “hip-fizz”) brings an incredible lineup of Philadelphia artists to the FringeArts stage for a series dedicated to highlighting the creativity and innovation that runs rampant in our city. The artists include an exhilarating mix of familiar and new faces to the FringeArts stage, from longtime collaborator Pig Iron Theatre Company’s newest work to prolific poet and noise musician Moor Mother’s first play. Some performers even appear in multiple HPFS shows. To get you ready for this new series, we’re breaking down Who’s Who in High Pressure Fire Service…part one.

Kicking off High Pressure Fire Service, is A Fierce Kind of Love written by Suli Holum, directed by David Bradley, and produced by the Institute on Disabilities at Temple University.

Wandering Alice, 2008

Many people may recognize the name Suli Holum as a staple in the Philadelphia arts community. Holum is one of the co-founders of Pig Iron Theatre Company, an award-winning director, performer, choreographer and playwright, and recently, Mrs. Capulet in the Wilma Theater’s production of Romeo and Juliet. She has been involved with numerous productions that have crossed Fringe’s stage, including Wandering Alice, written and co-directed with Nichole Canuso Dance Company and presented in the 2008 Curated Fringe Festival, and Cafeteria by Pig Iron Theatre Company in the 2003 Curated Fringe Festival, which earned her a Barrymore Award in choreography.

David Bradley is a director, producer and teaching artist who work has touched a variety of stages and collaborations across Philly. Bradley is the Founding Director of LiveConnections, in partnership with World Cafe Live, has performed in over 30 productions at People’s Light, is the Artistic Director of Living News at the National Constitution Center, has collaborated with Philadelphia Young Playwrights, and has traveled the world co-creating theater that addresses public health and social issues with Outside the Wire.

Bradley and Holum teamed up with Temple University College of Education’s Institute on Disabilities, which addresses disability as a valued aspect of diversity throughout civic life. In addition to producing the first iteration of this work in 2016 and its expanded remount here at FringeArts, the Institute is committed to innovation in pre-professional training, community training and technical assistance, research and information dissemination.

Other familiar faces in the A Fierce Kind of Love cast include Erin McNulty, most recently on the

FringeArts stage in Jerome Bel’s GALA in 2016 and 2018, as well as Cathy Simpson, a prolific and long-time Philly actress who has performed on a plethora of stages (InterAct, Wilma, and the Arden, to name a few) and was recently seen in the 2018 Independent Fringe Festival show, Day of Absence. Read bios for the full cast of A Fierce Kind of Love on the event page.

The second show in the HPFS lineup is The Appointment by Lightning Rod Special. No stranger to the FringeArts stage, Lightning Rod Special is an experimental performance company dedicated to exploring complex questions through an ensemble creation process and a lead artist for each show. Lightning Rod Special premiered their Obie Award-winning production Underground Railroad Game in Philadelphia at FringeArts in 2015, and they also performed their co-production with Strange Attractor Theatre Company Sans Everything here in 2017. They got their start, however, producing in the Independent Fringe Festival: Hackles in 2012 and Go Long Big Softie in 2013.

Sans Everything, 2017, Photo by Johanna Austin

For The Appointment (some may have seen the early draft performance titled Unformed Consent), Lightning Rod Special has assembled a stellar cast of Philly artists, and this new work is led by Alice Yorke. Yorke is a Co-Director of Lightning Rod Special, with whom she created and performed in Hackles, Let the Dog See the Rabbit, and Sans Everything. She has also collaborated on works with Pig Iron Theatre Company, InterAct Theatre, Theatre Exile, the Bearded Ladies Cabaret, Martha Graham Cracker Cabaret, and the Fringe favorite band Red 40 and the Last Groovement. Yorke also graduated from the Pig Iron School for Advanced Performance Training.

In April, we see the launch of the next HPFS show, Broccoli, Roosevelt and Mr. House! by The Berserker Residents. Founded in 2007, The Berserker Residents are an ensemble dedicated to creating original works of alternative comedy with a focus on parody, absurdism, and subverting theatrical conventions. The Berserker Residents were last seen on the FringeArts stage in their March 2017 production of It’s So Learning, and they collaborated with the University of the Arts to create These Terrible Things as a 2017 Independent Fringe Festival show.

It’s So Learning, 2017, Photo by Kate Raines

They have also produced the works The Jersey Devil, The Giant Squid, The Annihilation Point, and The Post Show as part of Independent Fringe Festivals past. The imaginative co-creators—Justin Jain, David Johnson, and Bradley K. Wrenn—have brought their work to a variety of other Philadelphia stages (The Annenberg Center, Theatre Horizon, White Pines Productions, and more) as well as national and international stages like Ars Nova NYC, The San Francisco Mime Troupe, and The Assembly in Edinburgh, Scotland as part of the Edinburgh Fringe.

Individually, you may recognize these performers from their work all over the city. Justin Jain is a member of the Wilma Theatre HotHouse, has been a part of the Shakespeare in Clark Park education team, and is a teaching artist for Philadelphia Young Playwrights, Arden Theatre Company, the University of the Arts, and People’s Light, in addition to performing at a number of regional theaters. David Johnson has performed with Theatre Exile, Enchantment Theatre, Mum Puppet Theatre, People’s Light, Commonwealth Classic Theatre, Theatre Horizon, and the Wilma Theatre, as well as the Baltimore Theatre Project and The Blue Ridge Theatre Festival. Bradley Wrenn has performed with Shakespeare in Clark Park, Lantern Theatre, Enchantment Theatre Company, BRAT Productions, and Mauckingbird Theatre Company, and is an accomplished puppeteer, “wiggling the dollies” for numerous Mum Puppet Theatre productions including the Barrymore nominated ensemble of Animal Farm. He also co-created the acclaimed 2013 Curated Fringe Festival work The Ballad of Joe Hill with Adrienne Mackey.

We’re excited for such a talented cohort of creators and performers to be joining us at FringeArts this March and April. Click below for more information on each show, and stay tuned for our “Who’s Who in High Pressure Fire Service, part two” blog post, coming soon!

A Fierce Kind of Love
Suli Holum, David Bradley, Institute on Disabilities, Temple University
March 1–3, 2019

The Appointment
Lightning Rod Special
March 20–31

Broccoli, Roosevelt and Mr. House!
The Berserker Residents
April 12–14

HPFS Subscriptions:
$150 Six-Show Package / $120 for members
15% off tickets to 3-5 performances / 30% off for members

Single Tickets:
$31 general / $21.70 members
$15 students and 25-and-under
$2 FringeACCESS members

Wedgwood on the Green

Posted September 23rd, 2017

A story in light and sound. A performance in and out of the round. Follow a young man up the fire escape, through the sliding glass doors, to a world where curiosity consumes innocence, where friendships crystallize in the pressure of responsibility and misfortune. Drip Symphony debuts with Wedgwood on the Green.

$15 / 60 minutes

Wedgwood on the Green was originally published in the 2013 issue of Underground Pool, The University of the Arts’s annual publication of short stories and poems. It was conceived and written by Nick Schwasman and penned during his final days of undergrad. A poetic memoir, Wedgwood reflects on his adolescent days spent among an ambitious group of friends who hungered for escape from the confines of their suburban lives. Together, they confronted the harsh realities of the freedom they recklessly sought, the dangers of substance abuse, and that complicated, sometimes toxic idea, manhood. In 2015, Nick joined forces with long-time collaborator Nate Barnett to translate the story into a live radio play, which they premiered in the 2015 Solow Festival. They created musical underscoring, original songs, arrangements, and live sound effects to accompany a reading of the story. The audience was encouraged to wear eye covers to enhance the auditory experience. This September, Drip Symphony presents a fully-realized Wedgwood on the Green to an audience of 25, seated in a circle of swivel chairs. Immersed in this world, its details appear all around as the story is brought to life. Audience members are free to turn in their chairs and choose what they do and do not see. This show is developed through a unique style of collaboration, bringing together a diverse group of artists whose contributions have provided the rich layers of its design. Together they explore storytelling through puppetry, sculpture, music, sound, and light.

~~~

Drip Symphony is a live performance company that brings together diverse artists committed to creating new, engaging art. These artists fuse experimental practices with established technique to make innovative performance for a modern audience. Drip Symphony is co-directed by Nick Schwasman and Nate Barnett.

Website Facebook Instagram

 

 

 

Tongue & Groove

Posted September 23rd, 2017

Inspired by personal information anonymously submitted by the audience, this Fringe-favorite ensemble instantly creates a montage of hilarious and heartbreaking scenes and monologues!

 For their 10th anniversary season, T&G turns the tables: instead of asking you to provide the answers, now it’s your turn to pose the questions!
What question has been on your mind lately?
Personal or global, emotional or intellectual, mundane or spiritual….

Submit your question pre-show; T&G then uses your personal queries for their spontaneous exploration of relationships and the human experience.

Every performance reflects the unique personality of that show’s audience; each T&G show has never been seen before, and will never be seen again.

For more information: tongue-groove.com

For exceptional unscripted theater, put your questions in T&G’s hands!

Learn more about this show from T&G’s Founder and Artistic Director Bobbi Block over at the FringeArts blog.

Check out the Broad Street Review’s coverage of the show here!

 $18 / 65 minutes

Facebook

Tongue & Groove just celebrated our Ten Year Anniversary! T&G is inspired by several forms of theater including long and short-form improv, Playback Theater, the Interactive Theater of Jeff Wirth, and the incomparable improvised plays performed by TJ & Dave. We have a unique company of actors-who-improvise and improvisers-who-act, who strive to create theater that elevates the power of spontaneous creation. Over the years, we’ve honed our signature style of serio-comic, realism-based “Actors’ Improv,” and have created fifteen original shows. We’ve performed all around Philadelphia in theaters and colleges, and garnered critical acclaim. The ensemble has become highly comfortable in our physical and emotional work, and has grown seamlessly connected (as our name implies). Artistic Director Bobbi Block has taught Actors’ Improv in Europe, Brazil, New Zealand and Australia, and the Tongue & Groove format has been performed in Rio, Holland, and New Zealand!

“I wish I could conceive dramatic situations and genuine dialogue that’s a tenth as incisive and moving as a typical T&G show.” Mark Cofta, Broad Street Review

“Dazzling.” The Philadelphia Inquirer 

“Hilarious . . . and fearless.” Philly Weekly

“Acted with soul-baring sincerity, intelligence, and humor. Go see this!” City Paper

Wedgwood on the Green

Posted September 23rd, 2017

A story in light and sound. A performance in and out of the round. Follow a young man up the fire escape, through the sliding glass doors, to a world where curiosity consumes innocence, where friendships crystallize in the pressure of responsibility and misfortune. Drip Symphony debuts with Wedgwood on the Green.

$15 / 60 minutes

“Wedgwood on the Green” was originally published in the 2013 issue of Underground Pool, the University of the Arts’ annual publication of short stories and poems. It was conceived and written by Nick Schwasman, and penned during his final days of undergrad. A poetic memoir, “Wedgwood” reflected on his adolescent days spent among an ambitious group of friends who hungered for escape from the confines of their suburban lives. Together, they confronted the harsh realities of the freedom they recklessly sought, the dangers of substance abuse, and that complicated, sometimes toxic idea, manhood.

In 2015, Nick joined forces with long-time collaborator Nate Barnett to translate the story into a live radio play, which they premiered in the 2015 Solow Festival. They created musical underscoring, original songs, arrangements, and live sound effects to accompany a reading of the story. The audience was encouraged to wear eye covers to enhance the auditory experience.

This September, Drip Symphony presents a fully-realized Wedgwood on the Green to an audience of 25, seated in a circle of swivel chairs. Immersed in this world, its details appear all around as the story is brought to life. Audience members are free to turn in their chairs and choose what they do and do not see.

This show is developed through a unique style of collaboration, bringing together a diverse group of artists whose contributions have provided the rich layers of its design. Together they explore storytelling through puppetry, sculpture, music, sound, and light.

~~~

Drip Symphony is a live performance company that brings together diverse artists committed to creating new, engaging art. These artists fuse experimental practices with established technique to make innovative performance for a modern audience.

Drip Symphony is co-directed by Nick Schwasman and Nate Barnett.

 

Website

Facebook

Instagram

 

 

 

Wedgwood on the Green

Posted September 22nd, 2017

A story in light and sound. A performance in and out of the round. Follow a young man up the fire escape, through the sliding glass doors, to a world where curiosity consumes innocence, where friendships crystallize in the pressure of responsibility and misfortune. Drip Symphony debuts with Wedgwood on the Green.

$15 / 60 minutes

“Wedgwood on the Green” was originally published in the 2013 issue of Underground Pool, the University of the Arts’ annual publication of short stories and poems. It was conceived and written by Nick Schwasman, and penned during his final days of undergrad. A poetic memoir, “Wedgwood” reflected on his adolescent days spent among an ambitious group of friends who hungered for escape from the confines of their suburban lives. Together, they confronted the harsh realities of the freedom they recklessly sought, the dangers of substance abuse, and that complicated, sometimes toxic idea, manhood.

In 2015, Nick joined forces with long-time collaborator Nate Barnett to translate the story into a live radio play, which they premiered in the 2015 Solow Festival. They created musical underscoring, original songs, arrangements, and live sound effects to accompany a reading of the story. The audience was encouraged to wear eye covers to enhance the auditory experience.

This September, Drip Symphony presents a fully-realized Wedgwood on the Green to an audience of 25, seated in a circle of swivel chairs. Immersed in this world, its details appear all around as the story is brought to life. Audience members are free to turn in their chairs and choose what they do and do not see.

This show is developed through a unique style of collaboration, bringing together a diverse group of artists whose contributions have provided the rich layers of its design. Together they explore storytelling through puppetry, sculpture, music, sound, and light.

~~~

Drip Symphony is a live performance company that brings together diverse artists committed to creating new, engaging art. These artists fuse experimental practices with established technique to make innovative performance for a modern audience.

Drip Symphony is co-directed by Nick Schwasman and Nate Barnett.

 

Website

Facebook

Instagram

 

 

 

Tongue & Groove

Posted September 22nd, 2017

Inspired by personal information anonymously submitted by the audience, this Fringe-favorite ensemble instantly creates a montage of hilarious and heartbreaking scenes and monologues!

For their 10th anniversary season, T&G turns the tables: instead of asking you to provide the answers, now it’s your turn to pose the questions!
What question has been on your mind lately?
Personal or global, emotional or intellectual, mundane or spiritual….

Submit your question pre-show; T&G then uses your personal queries for their spontaneous exploration of relationships and the human experience.

Every performance reflects the unique personality of that show’s audience; each T&G show has never been seen before, and will never be seen again.

For more information: tongue-groove.com.

For exceptional unscripted theater, put your questions in T&G’s hands!

Learn more about this show from T&G’s Founder and Artistic Director Bobbi Block over at the FringeArts blog.

Check out the Broad Street Review’s coverage of the show here!

 

$18 / 65 minutes

Facebook

Tongue & Groove just celebrated our Ten Year Anniversary! T&G is inspired by several forms of theater including long and short-form improv, Playback Theater, the Interactive Theater of Jeff Wirth, and the incomparable improvised plays performed by TJ & Dave. We have a unique company of actors-who-improvise and improvisers-who-act, who strive to create theater that elevates the power of spontaneous creation. Over the years, we’ve honed our signature style of serio-comic, realism-based ‘Actors’ Improv,’ and have created 15 original shows. We’ve performed all around Philadelphia in theaters and colleges, and garnered critical acclaim. The ensemble has become highly comfortable in our physical and emotional work, and has grown seamlessly connected (as our name implies). Artistic Director Bobbi Block has taught Actors’ Improv in Europe, Brazil, New Zealand and Australia, and the Tongue & Groove format has been performed in Rio, Holland, and New Zealand!

“I wish I could conceive dramatic situations and genuine dialogue that’s a tenth as incisive and moving as a typical T&G show.” Mark Cofta, Broad St Review

“Dazzling” Inquirer

“Hilarious… and fearless” Philly Weekly

“Acted with soul-baring sincerity, intelligence, & humor. Go see this!” City Paper

Wedgwood on the Green

Posted September 22nd, 2017

A story in light and sound. A performance in and out of the round. Follow a young man up the fire escape, through the sliding glass doors, to a world where curiosity consumes innocence, where friendships crystallize in the pressure of responsibility and misfortune. Drip Symphony debuts with Wedgwood on the Green.

$15 / 60 minutes

“Wedgwood on the Green” was originally published in the 2013 issue of Underground Pool, the University of the Arts’ annual publication of short stories and poems. It was conceived and written by Nick Schwasman, and penned during his final days of undergrad. A poetic memoir, “Wedgwood” reflected on his adolescent days spent among an ambitious group of friends who hungered for escape from the confines of their suburban lives. Together, they confronted the harsh realities of the freedom they recklessly sought, the dangers of substance abuse, and that complicated, sometimes toxic idea, manhood.

In 2015, Nick joined forces with long-time collaborator Nate Barnett to translate the story into a live radio play, which they premiered in the 2015 Solow Festival. They created musical underscoring, original songs, arrangements, and live sound effects to accompany a reading of the story. The audience was encouraged to wear eye covers to enhance the auditory experience.

This September, Drip Symphony presents a fully-realized Wedgwood on the Green to an audience of 25, seated in a circle of swivel chairs. Immersed in this world, its details appear all around as the story is brought to life. Audience members are free to turn in their chairs and choose what they do and do not see.

This show is developed through a unique style of collaboration, bringing together a diverse group of artists whose contributions have provided the rich layers of its design. Together they explore storytelling through puppetry, sculpture, music, sound, and light.

~~~

Drip Symphony is a live performance company that brings together diverse artists committed to creating new, engaging art. These artists fuse experimental practices with established technique to make innovative performance for a modern audience.

Drip Symphony is co-directed by Nick Schwasman and Nate Barnett.

 

Website

Facebook

Instagram

 

 

 

Wedgwood on the Green

Posted September 21st, 2017

A story in light and sound. A performance in and out of the round. Follow a young man up the fire escape, through the sliding glass doors, to a world where curiosity consumes innocence, where friendships crystallize in the pressure of responsibility and misfortune. Drip Symphony debuts with Wedgwood on the Green.

$15 / 60 minutes

“Wedgwood on the Green” was originally published in the 2013 issue of Underground Pool, the University of the Arts’ annual publication of short stories and poems. It was conceived and written by Nick Schwasman, and penned during his final days of undergrad. A poetic memoir, “Wedgwood” reflected on his adolescent days spent among an ambitious group of friends who hungered for escape from the confines of their suburban lives. Together, they confronted the harsh realities of the freedom they recklessly sought, the dangers of substance abuse, and that complicated, sometimes toxic idea, manhood.

In 2015, Nick joined forces with long-time collaborator Nate Barnett to translate the story into a live radio play, which they premiered in the 2015 Solow Festival. They created musical underscoring, original songs, arrangements, and live sound effects to accompany a reading of the story. The audience was encouraged to wear eye covers to enhance the auditory experience.

This September, Drip Symphony presents a fully-realized Wedgwood on the Green to an audience of 25, seated in a circle of swivel chairs. Immersed in this world, its details appear all around as the story is brought to life. Audience members are free to turn in their chairs and choose what they do and do not see.

This show is developed through a unique style of collaboration, bringing together a diverse group of artists whose contributions have provided the rich layers of its design. Together they explore storytelling through puppetry, sculpture, music, sound, and light.

~~~

Drip Symphony is a live performance company that brings together diverse artists committed to creating new, engaging art. These artists fuse experimental practices with established technique to make innovative performance for a modern audience.

Drip Symphony is co-directed by Nick Schwasman and Nate Barnett.

 

Website

Facebook

Instagram

 

 

 

Wedgwood on the Green

Posted September 21st, 2017

A story in light and sound. A performance in and out of the round. Follow a young man up the fire escape, through the sliding glass doors, to a world where curiosity consumes innocence, where friendships crystallize in the pressure of responsibility and misfortune. Drip Symphony debuts with Wedgwood on the Green.

$15 / 60 minutes

“Wedgwood on the Green” was originally published in the 2013 issue of Underground Pool, the University of the Arts’ annual publication of short stories and poems. It was conceived and written by Nick Schwasman, and penned during his final days of undergrad. A poetic memoir, “Wedgwood” reflected on his adolescent days spent among an ambitious group of friends who hungered for escape from the confines of their suburban lives. Together, they confronted the harsh realities of the freedom they recklessly sought, the dangers of substance abuse, and that complicated, sometimes toxic idea, manhood.

In 2015, Nick joined forces with long-time collaborator Nate Barnett to translate the story into a live radio play, which they premiered in the 2015 Solow Festival. They created musical underscoring, original songs, arrangements, and live sound effects to accompany a reading of the story. The audience was encouraged to wear eye covers to enhance the auditory experience.

This September, Drip Symphony presents a fully-realized Wedgwood on the Green to an audience of 25, seated in a circle of swivel chairs. Immersed in this world, its details appear all around as the story is brought to life. Audience members are free to turn in their chairs and choose what they do and do not see.

This show is developed through a unique style of collaboration, bringing together a diverse group of artists whose contributions have provided the rich layers of its design. Together they explore storytelling through puppetry, sculpture, music, sound, and light.

~~~

Drip Symphony is a live performance company that brings together diverse artists committed to creating new, engaging art. These artists fuse experimental practices with established technique to make innovative performance for a modern audience.

Drip Symphony is co-directed by Nick Schwasman and Nate Barnett.

 

Website

Facebook

Instagram

 

 

 

Tongue & Groove

Posted September 16th, 2017

Inspired by personal information anonymously submitted by the audience, this Fringe-favorite ensemble instantly creates a montage of hilarious and heartbreaking scenes and monologues!

For their 10th anniversary season, T&G turns the tables: instead of asking you to provide the answers, now it’s your turn to pose the questions!
What question has been on your mind lately?
Personal or global, emotional or intellectual, mundane or spiritual….

Submit your question pre-show; T&G then uses your personal queries for their spontaneous exploration of relationships and the human experience.

Every performance reflects the unique personality of that show’s audience; each T&G show has never been seen before, and will never be seen again.

For more information: tongue-groove.com.

For exceptional unscripted theater, put your questions in T&G’s hands!

Learn more about this show from T&G’s Founder and Artistic Director Bobbi Block over at the FringeArts blog.

Check out the Broad Street Review’s coverage of the show here!

$18 / 65 minutes

Facebook

Tongue & Groove just celebrated our Ten Year Anniversary! T&G is inspired by several forms of theater including long and short-form improv, Playback Theater, the Interactive Theater of Jeff Wirth, and the incomparable improvised plays performed by TJ & Dave. We have a unique company of actors-who-improvise and improvisers-who-act, who strive to create theater that elevates the power of spontaneous creation. Over the years, we’ve honed our signature style of serio-comic, realism-based ‘Actors’ Improv,’ and have created 15 original shows. We’ve performed all around Philadelphia in theaters and colleges, and garnered critical acclaim. The ensemble has become highly comfortable in our physical and emotional work, and has grown seamlessly connected (as our name implies). Artistic Director Bobbi Block has taught Actors’ Improv in Europe, Brazil, New Zealand and Australia, and the Tongue & Groove format has been performed in Rio, Holland, and New Zealand!

“I wish I could conceive dramatic situations and genuine dialogue that’s a tenth as incisive and moving as a typical T&G show.” Mark Cofta, Broad St Review

“Dazzling” Inquirer

“Hilarious… and fearless” Philly Weekly

“Acted with soul-baring sincerity, intelligence, & humor. Go see this!” City Paper

Tongue & Groove

Posted September 14th, 2017

Inspired by personal information anonymously submitted by the audience, this Fringe-favorite ensemble instantly creates a montage of hilarious and heartbreaking scenes and monologues!

For their 10th anniversary season, T&G turns the tables: instead of asking you to provide the answers, now it’s your turn to pose the questions!
What question has been on your mind lately?
Personal or global, emotional or intellectual, mundane or spiritual….

Submit your question pre-show; T&G then uses your personal queries for their spontaneous exploration of relationships and the human experience.

Every performance reflects the unique personality of that show’s audience; each T&G show has never been seen before, and will never be seen again.

For more information: tongue-groove.com.

For exceptional unscripted theater, put your questions in T&G’s hands!

Learn more about this show from T&G’s Founder and Artistic Director Bobbi Block over at the FringeArts blog.

Check out the Broad Street Review’s coverage of the show here!

$18 / 65 minutes

Facebook

Tongue & Groove just celebrated our Ten Year Anniversary! T&G is inspired by several forms of theater including long and short-form improv, Playback Theater, the Interactive Theater of Jeff Wirth, and the incomparable improvised plays performed by TJ & Dave. We have a unique company of actors-who-improvise and improvisers-who-act, who strive to create theater that elevates the power of spontaneous creation. Over the years, we’ve honed our signature style of serio-comic, realism-based ‘Actors’ Improv,’ and have created 15 original shows. We’ve performed all around Philadelphia in theaters and colleges, and garnered critical acclaim. The ensemble has become highly comfortable in our physical and emotional work, and has grown seamlessly connected (as our name implies). Artistic Director Bobbi Block has taught Actors’ Improv in Europe, Brazil, New Zealand and Australia, and the Tongue & Groove format has been performed in Rio, Holland, and New Zealand!

“I wish I could conceive dramatic situations and genuine dialogue that’s a tenth as incisive and moving as a typical T&G show.” Mark Cofta, Broad St Review

“Dazzling” Inquirer

“Hilarious… and fearless” Philly Weekly

“Acted with soul-baring sincerity, intelligence, & humor. Go see this!” City Paper

Tongue & Groove

Posted September 9th, 2017

Inspired by personal information anonymously submitted by the audience, this Fringe-favorite ensemble instantly creates a montage of hilarious and heartbreaking scenes and monologues!

For their 10th anniversary season, T&G turns the tables: instead of asking you to provide the answers, now it’s your turn to pose the questions!
What question has been on your mind lately?
Personal or global, emotional or intellectual, mundane or spiritual….

Submit your question pre-show; T&G then uses your personal queries for their spontaneous exploration of relationships and the human experience.

Every performance reflects the unique personality of that show’s audience; each T&G show has never been seen before, and will never be seen again.

For more information: tongue-groove.com.

For exceptional unscripted theater, put your questions in T&G’s hands!

Learn more about this show from T&G’s Founder and Artistic Director Bobbi Block over at the FringeArts blog.

Check out the Broad Street Review’s coverage of the show here!

$18 / 65 minutes

Facebook

Tongue & Groove just celebrated our Ten Year Anniversary! T&G is inspired by several forms of theater including long and short-form improv, Playback Theater, the Interactive Theater of Jeff Wirth, and the incomparable improvised plays performed by TJ & Dave. We have a unique company of actors-who-improvise and improvisers-who-act, who strive to create theater that elevates the power of spontaneous creation. Over the years, we’ve honed our signature style of serio-comic, realism-based ‘Actors’ Improv,’ and have created 15 original shows. We’ve performed all around Philadelphia in theaters and colleges, and garnered critical acclaim. The ensemble has become highly comfortable in our physical and emotional work, and has grown seamlessly connected (as our name implies). Artistic Director Bobbi Block has taught Actors’ Improv in Europe, Brazil, New Zealand and Australia, and the Tongue & Groove format has been performed in Rio, Holland, and New Zealand!

“I wish I could conceive dramatic situations and genuine dialogue that’s a tenth as incisive and moving as a typical T&G show.” Mark Cofta, Broad St Review

“Dazzling” Inquirer

“Hilarious… and fearless” Philly Weekly

“Acted with soul-baring sincerity, intelligence, & humor. Go see this!” City Paper

Artist Talks: Tina Satter and Annie-B Parson in conversation

Posted September 9th, 2017

Annie-B Parson co-founded Big Dance Theater in 1991. Image result for annie-b parsonTina Satter has been making performance works under the mantle of Half Straddle since 2008.

Join the creators of Ghost Rings and 17c for an intimate and candid conversation about their work.

 

Tongue & Groove

Posted September 8th, 2017

 

Inspired by personal information anonymously submitted by the audience, this Fringe-favorite ensemble instantly creates a montage of hilarious and heartbreaking scenes & monologues!

For a detailed description of our Fringe show theme, and more info about the company and cast, go to tongue-groove.com.

“Hilarious… and fearless” Philly Weekly

“Acted with soul-baring sincerity, intelligence, & humor. Go see this!” City Paper

Learn more about this show from T&G’s Founder and Artistic Director Bobbi Block over at the FringeArts blog.

Check out the Broad Street Review’s coverage of the show here!

$18 / 65 minutes

Facebook

Tongue & Groove just celebrated our Ten Year Anniversary! T&G is inspired by several forms of theater including long and short-form improv, Playback Theater, the Interactive Theater of Jeff Wirth, and the incomparable improvised plays performed by TJ & Dave. We have a unique company of actors-who-improvise and improvisers-who-act, who strive to create theater that elevates the power of spontaneous creation. Over the years, we’ve honed our signature style of serio-comic, realism-based ‘Actors’ Improv,’ and have created 15 original shows. We’ve performed all around Philadelphia in theaters and colleges, and garnered critical acclaim. The ensemble has become highly comfortable in our physical and emotional work, and has grown seamlessly connected (as our name implies). Artistic Director Bobbi Block has taught Actors’ Improv in Europe, Brazil, New Zealand and Australia, and the Tongue & Groove format has been performed in Rio, Holland, and New Zealand! “I wish I could conceive dramatic situations and genuine dialogue that’s a tenth as incisive and moving as a typical T&G show.” Mark Cofta, Broad St Review “Dazzling” Inquirer “Hilarious… and fearless.” Philadelphia Weekly

Fringe at 20 Profile: Dito van Reigersberg

Posted September 23rd, 2016
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Dito Van Reigersberg in Zero Cost House (photo by JJ Tiziou)

Name: Dito van Reigersberg, sometimes Martha Graham Cracker

Type of Artist: Actor/Cabaret Performer

CompanyPig Iron Theatre Company, Co-Founder

This is a partial list of Fringe shows I’ve participated in:
Cafeteria, Pig Iron, 1997 (First Fringe!) – Charlotte the cafeteria lady
The Lorca Cycle, Pig Iron, 1999 – Federico
Shut Eye, Pig Iron, 2001 – Clark
Hell Meets Henry Halfway, Pig Iron, 2004 – Henry
Isabella, Pig Iron, 2007 – Angelo
Welcome to Yuba City, Pig Iron, 2009 – Tom White/Joaquin
Takes, Nichole Canuso Dance Company, 2010
Oedipus at FDR Park, 2010, – Messenger
Twelfth Night or What You Will, Pig Iron, 2011 – Orsino
Zero Cost House, Pig Iron, 2012 – Present Okada
Pay Up, Pig Iron, 2013 – Scene 21

Fringe show I’m participating in for 2016: I’m mostly watching this year but then closing the festival with a Martha Graham Cracker show at FringeArts on the 24th of September, with some special guests I’m very excited about. I’ll also be doing sprints to prepare for scaling the steep seating risers of the FringeArts theatre. I have lovingly dubbed those FringeArts stairs “the K2 of alternative theatre.”

First Fringe I attended and highlight: I moved to Philly just in time for the first Festival in 1997.  During that first Fringe I remember meeting the incredible members of Headlong Dance Theater and New Paradise Labs, who by now have become lifelong friends (I think Whit McLaughlin let us Pig Ironers watch a dress rehearsal of Gold Russian Finger Love, a sort of James Bond fantasia which was deliciously odd and unforgettably beautiful); I guess that was the moment I realized that, as the Talking Heads might say, “this must be the place.”

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from Cafeteria (photo by JJ Tiziou)

First Fringe I participated in: So when we arrived in Philly in 1997, we had rehearsed all summer at Swarthmore College to make a wordless piece about the American life-cycle called Cafeteria. The piece is set in junior high, a corporate and then a retirement home cafeteria, and all the dramatic action in the show is told in movement. We had no audience in Philly, no sense of what kind of reach the Fringe might have, and also we had this new, weird, hard-to-categorize piece to try to sell. Thankfully we were veterans of the Edinburgh Fringe, so we shamelessly flyered for the show all over town like mad people and hoped for the best.

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Fringe at 20 Profile: Brenna Geffers

Posted September 19th, 2016
Geffers with Actors

Geffers with Shadow House performers Anthony Crosby, Kayla Grasser, and Michael Linehard (photo by Mickey Herr)

Name: Brenna Geffers

Type of Artist: Theater-maker and Director

Companies: I am a freelance artist, but have been proud to call Theatre Exile, EgoPo Classic Theater, Thom Weaver’s Flashpoint, and Rebel Theater in NYC my artistic homes in the past. Currently I am an artist-in-residence at The Powel House with the Philadelphia Society for the Preservation of Landmarks (PhilaLandmarks). I am also a member of the Philadelphia Opera Collective, which just means that I hang out with some gorgeous artists and singers for a few months out of the year.

List of Fringe shows I’ve participated in:
Mother Courage and Her Children, Wandering Rom, 2006 – Director
Planetary Enzyme Blues, New Paradise Laboratories, 2007 – Assistant Director
Masque of the Red Death, Wandering Rom, 2007 – Creator/Director
Mud, Wandering Rom, 2008 –  Director
Woyzeck, EgoPo, 2009 – Director
Marat/Sade, EgoPo, 2010 – Director
The Oresteia Project, Philadelphia Artist Collective, 2011 – Creator/Director
The Consul, Philadelphia Opera Collective, 2012 – Director
Opera Macabre, POC, 2013 – Librettist/Director
A Doll’s House, EgoPo, 2013 – Creator/Director
By You That Made Me Frankenstein, POC, 2014 – Creator/Director
Jump the Moon, Philadelphia Opera Collective, 2015 – Creator/Director

Geffers - Mud

Joe Canuso, Megan Snell, and Robert Daponte in Mud (photo by John Margolus)

Fringe show I’m participating in for 2016Shadow House, an immersive opera and theater piece where 10 different storylines across 200 years are connected by a single location. Audience members follow characters and stories by moving around the historic Powel House, chasing what interests them to put the pieces together. There is music and movement and mystery happening in all the nooks and crannies of the house. I am the creator and director for the piece and was commissioned by the Philadelphia Society for the Preservation of Landmarks.

First Fringe I attended and highlight: I started seeing Fringe shows before I moved to Philadelphia, so the shows that I saw, like the epic Black Party Pink Palace and the achingly delicate Hell Meets Henry Half Way loom large in my mind. They inspired me to move to Philadelphia and be part of the strange and beautiful scene here.

First Fringe I participated in: The first show that I was actually hired to be a part of – rather than using the money I saved up all summer from shady telemarketing jobs – was Planetary Enzyme Blues with New Paradise Laboratories. I was the AD for the show and cherished every moment I was in the room with those artists; you don’t spend hours watching Mary McCool create work and leave unchanged. I learned a lot that summer, about art and collaboration and risk. I cried at the final moments of that show every time I watched it.

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An Antihero Returns

Posted September 12th, 2016
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Peter Smith and Kyle Yackoski (photo by Plate 3 Photography)

Pow! Blam! Zip! Bang! These are just a few of the terms found emblazoned on comic book panels, and sometimes, across our movie screens. They represent and highlight the violence that takes place in these fictional stories of heroes versus villains, but the Earth-shattering showdowns and the impending doom our heroes are trying to upend can be aggressively severe. Recent, mainstream silver screen adaptations have indulged fans with a chance to revel in the chaos of cities crumbling, bullets flying, and punches landing as our defenders in tights attempt to save the day. These films and colorful comics have arguably painted violence in an inconsequential light. Audiences have become all too unfazed and that’s a serious problem according to the Tribe of Fools, a Philly based physical theatre company, and the architects behind Antihero.

Antihero uses dynamic fight-movement comedy to explore the depths of society’s fascination with violence and vigilantes, and how it ties into violence as entertainment in superhero films and comic books. Tribe of Fools aims to shine a light on this polarizing topic once again by bringing Antihero back to Fringe, after 3 years. “This show looks at how easy violence can become and the permanence of its consequences,” explains Tyler Brennan, the show’s director.

Brennan’s interest in the subject arose from looking at his own personal life. “What really got me interested in the subject was how often I would find myself thinking of my daily struggles in life in similar terms as the entertainment I was consuming. I would always envision myself destroying whatever problem I encountered. When you’re dealing with an insurance company or some sort of technology problem, it’s really no big deal, in some ways it helps. When I was dealing with people though, it became a huge problem. Everything was an argument and I always needed to win. It never escalated to violence in my personal life, but I would find myself enraged all the time.”

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Festival MVP Brett Mapp’s 2016 Schedule

Posted September 7th, 2016

Opening night of the Festival is tomorrow, can you believe it? It will no doubt be an incredible couple weeks of inspired performances, but if you’re like me you haven’t quite locked down your festival schedule yet. I mean, who has times for puzzles these days? It might seem overwhelming to fit all these amazing shows into just little more than two weeks, but thankfully there’s hope. Fringe Festival veteran, Old City District director of operations, general man about town, and self-described “hardcore Fringer” Brett Mapp has been kind enough to share his 2016 Fringe Festival schedule with us. If you’re looking for some guidance on what to see and how to fit it all together, it can’t hurt to start here.

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Tomas Dura, Bob Schmidt, and Tina Brock in Eugene Ionesco’s The Chairs (photo by Johanna Austin @ AustinArt.org)

9/7
Eugene Ionesco’s The Chairs @ 7:30pm

9/8
CITIZEN @ 7pm

9/9
Exile 2588 @ 7pm
Feed @ 8:30pm
Anithero @ 10pm

9/10
Raphstravaganza The Kinetic Experience @ 12pm
Levée des conflits @ 8pm

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Rebecca Lehrhoff, Rachel Wiese, Jesse Garlick, and Veronica Barron in Who Would Be King (photo by Chris McIntosh)

9/11
Who Would Be King @ 2pm
They’ll Be Callin Us Witches @ 4:30pm
Notes of a Native Song @ 8pm

9/12
The Sincerity Project @ 7pm

9/13
Gala @ 8pm

9/14
I Fucking Dare You @ 8:30pm

9/15
Animal Farm to Table @ 6pm
Wroughtland @ 9pm

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Fringe at 20 Profile: Bobbi Block

Posted September 2nd, 2016
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Bobbi Block (photo by JJ Tiziou)

Name: Bobbi Block

Type of Artist: Theater Artist; Producer; Director; Dancer; Drummer

Companies: Tongue & Groove Spontaneous Theater; LunchLady Doris; ComedySportz; P3: People’s Percussion Project; Unidos da Filadelfia

List of Fringe shows I’ve participated in: I have produced and performed in every single Fringe Festival since the first one, including many years when I produced and performed in multiple shows. There was only one year when I didn’t produce, though I did perform with my band one night that year, so I’m counting that as participating in every single Festival! My memory sucks, so thank god the Fringe Guide Archive is online or I would not have been able to make this list!

  • The Improv Marathon, 1997 – producer, performer, host [Got every improv group that existed at that time to perform back to back, I think it was a grand total of 5!]
  • Debut of LunchLady Doris at the Quarry Street outdoor stage, 1998 — artist, co-producer [LLD was a 5 member longform improv company (the first in the city) that ran for 12 years, with Dave Jadico, Karen Getz, Kelly Jennings, Kevin Dougherty.]
  • Bingo Bedlam, BbBb Productions, 1999 – director, producer, actor [A 10-minute play in which ALL of the words start with the letter B; featuring Jen Childs, Tony Lawton, Pete Pryor]
  • Birth-day!, P3: People Percussion Project, 2002 – co-producer, co-choreographer, dancer [The debut of P3 as part of the curated Fresh Moves series, co-founded with Judy Freed]
  • Late Night Cabaret, 2002 — MC
  • P3: People Percussion Project, 2003-2004 – co-producer, choreographer, dancer
  • LEAP! The Actors’ Improv Experiment, produced by LiveArts, 2007 – conceived and directed [w/ Megan Bellwoar, Catharine Slusar, Ben Lloyd, Tom Byrn, Joe Guzman]
  • In Bed, Tongue & Groove, 2007 – producer, director actor [Fringe Debut of Tongue & Groove Spontaneous Theater*]
  • LunchLady Doris, 1998-2008 – actor, co-producer
  • Secrets, Tongue & Groove, 2008-2009 – producer, director, actor
  • UnSpoken, Tongue & Groove, 2010 – producer, director, actor
  • Six, Tongue & Groove, 2011 – producer, director, actor
  • Le Grand Continental, LiveArts produced, 2012 – dancer
  • WHO, Tongue & Groove, 2012 – producer, director, actor
  • Secrets, Tongue & Groove, 2014 – producer, director, actor
  • Unidos da Filadelfia, 2012-2015 – drummer
  • Groove, Tongue & Groove, 2015 – producer, director, actor [A collaboration with blues dancers and musicians]
  • Before I Die, Tongue & Groove, 2016 – producer, director, actor

*Current and Past Tongue & Groove ensemble members: Fred Andersen, Megan Bellwoar, Beth Dougherty, Adam Gertler, Noah Herman, Matt LydonJennifer MacMillan, Carol Moog, Ed Miller, Eoin O’Shea, Seth Reichgott, Josh Rubinstein, Fred Siegel, Rebecca Sharp,Carrie Spaulding, Jordan Stalsworth

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Tongue & Groove (photo by Aaron Oster)

First Fringe I attended and highlight: I was there at the very start (go on, Grandma). The highlight was the exciting community vibe in Old City. The first several years, with everything taking place within several blocks, it was just so much fun to hop from show to show. You’d bump into people, ask what they were about to see or what they just saw, and just dash off to the next performance without planning. You felt you could take a chance on just about anything, cause everything was only 5 bucks. There was no on-line sales back then, so the ticket-buying process was in person and very communal – the box office was the place to see and be seen. I also loved the cabaret in the old days when you would see snippets of shows as teasers and then decide whether or not you wanted to see the full production. The cabaret was one big love-fest, kinda like a family — with Scott Johnston as a very weird ‘Dad’ of us all — plus you never know what might happen there. You wouldn’t think to miss a night of the Cabaret or you might miss something everyone would be talking about the next day!

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Fringe Festival 2016 Spotlight: Messing with Shakespeare

Posted August 25th, 2016

Drawing inspiration from the immortal works of the Bard of Avon, these shows provide fresh interpretations for the well trodden material. If you’re looking for unique perspectives on some of Shakespeare’s classics, be sure to check them out!

bedlam

(photo by Rachel O’Hanlon-Rodriguez)

Bedlam: Shakespeare in Rehab @ St. John the Baptist Church
Manayunk Theatre Company

Bedlam: Shakespeare in Rehab takes everything you know about classic theater and turns it on its head. Shakespearean Heroines are ripped out of their respective stories and thrown into a haunting, run down institution. Characters and audience alike are immersed in a world of mental health. More info and tickets here.

omeletto body

(photo by Oreste Montebello)

Omeletto: Like Hamlet, Only Scrambled @ Liberty Lands Park
Ombelico Mask Ensemble

Told through the lens of commedia dell’rte, the story of Hamlet gets a deconstructed re-imagining that only Ombelico Mask Ensemble can deliver. Come and see your favorite commedia characters’ (Arlecchino, Pantelone, Capitano, and the rest) take on the Bard. Performed in English, Italian, and French. More info and tickets here.

ophelia fringe

 

Drowning Ophelia @ The Iron Factory
Ensemble Atria and EagerRisk Theater

Jane doesn’t know what to do with the literary character who has taken up residence in her bathtub. She doesn’t want Ophelia interrupting the obsessive order of her life with obnoxious songs. Ophelia doesn’t care about what Jane wants, only what she needs. But, how do you move on when reconciliation is not an option? More info and tickets here.

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