Fringe-For-All 2—Among the Oats

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by Matthew A. Everett • July 23, 2008 • “I like the versatility of duct tape”

Last act of the Fringe-For-All double feature – Among The Oats

“Three guys wake up and find themselves inside of a can of oatmeal.”

So, sort of like Waiting For Godot, with oatmeal. No Exit, with fiber.

Single White Fringe Geek (and Mom) is the blog of Matthew A. Everett, one of five bloggers covering the Minnesota Fringe Festival for the Daily Planet.

I actually saw a previous production Jared Reise did of this piece in the ramshackle basement space of the Center for Performing Arts Projects several years back. It was just as odd in preview as a remember it. Odd in a good way. Weird, but amusing. Mark Benzel looks nice in a nightshirt, duct tape and apparently nothing else. And no one wears a red fez quite like Jared. (One of the many existential questions of the play – who exactly wakes up already wearing a fez anyway?)

Last red light of the night, but they handled it well.

The postcard promises, along with Andrew Cleveland as the third of the trio, Dream…Fashion…Death

So there you have it.

Jared’s blog indicates that this is a piece he’s been wanting to get out of his artistic system for a while… “No, “Among the Oats” isn’t Shakespeare, and it may not make the critics’ pick, but I really needed to do it. It’s bothered me artistically for years that I never gave it the chance it deserved back in 2002. Now we have a new venue, a new approach, new episodes. When it’s done, I can lay it to rest and move on to other things, knowing that I gave it a pretty good shot and fulfilled it as best I could.”

So, another one of those Fringe underdogs I always take a liking to. I know Jared and Andrew do good work, and Mark’s a new face, but certainly one I wouldn’t mind watching more of.

And anyone who quotes Kurt Vonnegut on his show card has my vote…

“Why anything? Because this moment simply is. Have you ever seen bugs trapped in amber? Well, here we are… trapped in the amber of this moment… there is no why.”

Among The Oats
Jared Reise
Intermedia Arts
2822 Lyndale Avenue South, Minneapolis

Saturday, August 2, 1pm
Sunday, August 3, 7pm
Wednesday, August 6, 8:30pm
Saturday, August 9, 10pm
Sunday, August 10, 5:30pm

Entering his sixth year of blogging about the Minnesota Fringe Festival (and bringing Mom along for the ride as a guest reviewer), Matthew A. Everett is also a local playwright and three-time recipient of grant support from the Minnesota State Arts Board. Information on Matthew and his plays can be found at matthewaeverett.com.