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September 13, 2017

Fringe Encores Series Highlight on Trippin


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This year marked the first time in 20 years that New York, was without its celebrated International Fringe Festival, that turned downtown Manhattan into a huge arts festival, with hundreds of performances from around the world.  With that many shows, there are bound to be really good ones and not so good ones.  About 12 years ago, Britt Lafield, decided to take the “Best of the Fest” for an extended run so that more people would get a chance to see something of note, they missed.   Dubbed the Fringe Encore Series, it was presented at the SoHo Playhouse (15 Vandam Street). Without a propped Fringe, Britt and SoHo Playhouse’s Darren Cole took the show on the road, literally, they traveled to eight festivals on four continents to find the “Best of the Fest” from around the world with a selection from the Adelaide, Brighton, Edinburgh, Winnipeg and Hollywood Fringe Festivals.

This year, Garden State Journal has looked over the offerings of the 16 shows to highlight a few that seemed noteworthy. Including TRIPPIN by Alex Canwell, which will play at the SoHo Playhouse from September 8 – 17 (check the website for full schedule www.sohoplayhouse.com.)

GSJ: How would you describe your show?

GARETH WILDIG: Great acting / thought-provoking / absorbing / quirky / funny

The play follows Dennis, a 9-5 weekend warrior who takes a new research chemical called 2CR-100 in the hope of going on a 'psychadelic holiday'. What he ends up on however is manic ride into the pits of the mind where a host of characters, some nice, some nasty, make him face the hardest thing of all, himself. It explores themes of addiction, suicide and depression whilst maintaining a healthy sense of silliness and play.

GSJ: What was the inspiration behind its creations?

GW: The writer has struggled mental health and addiction, he explores this very bravely in this his first piece of theatre. However, his love for silliness and fun also comes through very strongly. This is reflected in Sean Mclevy's direction and the playful approach to acting from the cast.

GSJ: Who should see this play and what do you hope they leave the theatre saying?

GW: Anybody who appreciates brave theatre, that seeks to explore the human condition in a fun and exciting way. When they leave the theatre, we hope they challenge their preconceptions and discuss what it is to be a human being. And have their face hurt from laughing at the silliness.

GSJ: Is this your first time performing or being presented in New York?

First time. We're excited!

GSJ: Outside of your production is there anything you want to do or site you hope to take in while you are here?

GW: We all want to explore the city and experience what it has to offer. We are interested in talking to the people here and experiencing the vibrancy of New York.

GSJ: What are you hoping that being part of the Fringe Encore Series will do for this project?

GW: We are hoping this festival will bring exposure to the play and it's important subject matter.

GSJ: To get into this festival you had to have excelled at another Fringe Festival – how was that experience overall and how important is it to theatre to have such festivals?

GW: It was an amazing experience and we are all extremely grateful these festivals exist to allow exploration of the form. They permit artists to take risks and search for self expression.

GSJ: What is up next for you?

GW: There is only chaos ahead.

 

TRIPPIN by Alex Canwell

SoHo Playhouse (15 Vandam Street)

Fri Sep 8 @ 10PM

Sat Sep 9 @ 6:30PM

Sun Sep 10 @ 7PM

Tue Sep 12 @ 8:30PM

Thu Sep 14 @ 8:30PM

Fri Sep 15 @ 10PM

Sat Sep 16 @ 10PM

Sun Sep 17 @ 5PM

Tickets are $29-$49 and can be purchased by visiting www.sohoplayhouse.com.

Please check website for the most up to date schedule and other shows in the Fringe Encore Series.

 

 

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