Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Girl at Fringe

Beth Marshall is directing, Girl, written by Megan Mostyn-Brown, a hard-hitting drama at this year's Fringe. When the audience entered the Gold Venue there were three black boxes on the stage and a blue suitcase. Girl consisted of three intimate stories which create a compelling account of the female adolescent experience and what it means to be "home."

The play opened with a young girl, Hannah (Chloe Shaw), seated on the center box. Hate and ugly were scrawled on her legs. Her sister had recently died and she was trying to come to terms with this harsh reality. Days of the week flashed on the screen above her head and we watched as she spiraled downward. She had become numb and the only reality was the feeling she got when began cutting herself. Her sister might not have lived the most exemplary life, but she began to emulate her, going so far as to buy a red-haired wig to look like her.

The second scene introduced a tom boy, Lucy (Alexa Carroll), with a Polaroid camera around her neck. She didn't try and blend in with the upper crust snobbish girls in school, preferring to keep to herself and document the moments of her life with the camera. A group of students began talking about sex and asked, "Where is the strangest place you have done it?" Well, she hadn't actually had sex yet, but when confronted with the question she said, "In a tree," and was shocked that they believed her. a classmate, Isaac (Matthew Gray), later called her out in private saying she was better than that. He walked her home and they began talking as if they had been friends for years. The girl's mom, (Sierra Vennes), sat house right and began talking about the mistakes she had made in life and how she hoped she could protect her daughter from making the same mistakes.  Ultimately, that goal is impossible.

Lydia (Rachel Comeau) performed the final scene alone. Her performance was stellar. Without going into details, I will say her story had heartbreak and pain, with hope in the end. She brought the entire audience on her emotional journey and we were faced with the harsh reality of what she had to face. She cried and laughed and tried to stay strong through it all. She is the one actress I didn't sketch, but I just had to stop and watch her performance without the interruption of glancing down at the page. She held new life dear and close to her chest, discovering what it meant to be at home.

This was heart-wrenching theater at its best. A tour-de-force of emotions.

Girl is in the Gold Venue inside the Orlando Museum of Art, 2416 Mills Ave N, Orlando, FL 32803.
Tickets are $6 along with the $10 Fringe button.
The remaining show dates are:
7:00 PM

6:30 PM
7:00 PM

Prints are available for each sketch for $250 and many originals can be purchased for $400. White museum grade shadow box frames are $100 more. You can e-mail Thor at

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