by Wendy Gennaula • July 29, 2008 • Our schedule is set-Tommy and I are going to see 13 shows in the first 6 days of the fringe. This year the kids’ schedule is a dream. The majority of the shows are in the West Bank/UM theater zone. So even though we have to take Monday night off (piano lessons!), we can still see all 11 kids’ offerings. Our other two choices are “Silent Poetry”:http://www.fringefestival.org/2008/show/?id=913 (as previously mentioned) and “My Hovercraft is Full of Eels”:http://www.fringefestival.org/2008/show/?id=909.
Here are our “Top 5 Best Bets for Kids”, in no particular order. Remember, we haven’t seen them yet!
“Maggie’s Magical Cat and Other Catastrophes”:http://www.fringefestival.org/2008/show/?id=797 by “SPACT”:http://gustavus.edu/news/4136. This is the same collaboration of Gustavus Adolphus and St. Peter area students who presented the lovely “Miranda’s Amazing Adventure” last year.
“An Inconvenient Squirrel”:http://www.fringefestival.org/2008/show/?id=802-A Scrimshaw show for kids. If you have been attending the fringe for as long as we have, this is either a sign of the apocalypse (like when Madonna was on the cover of Good Housekeeping) or that we are all getting old (also like when Madonna was on the cover of Good Housekeeping.) Either way, the title alone would put this on my list.
“Snip, Snap, Snute”:http://www.fringefestival.org/2008/show/?id=804. Russ King, keyboardist for The New Congress, anchors the instrumental accompaniment of this new musical comedy about trolls.
“Robin Hood the Musical!”:http://www.fringefestival.org/2008/show/?id=799 by Top Hat. Theater by kids for kids.
“Fools for Love”:http://www.fringefestival.org/2008/show/?id=906 by the Hastings Drama Club. Theater for kids by teens. The show promises a parade, dinosaur impressions, and a penguin ballet.
One more plug-the festival is sponsoring a family “ice cream social”:http://www.fringefestival.org/2008/fringe_central/ on Saturday August 2 at Bedlam from 12-3. We will be there between shows.
by Wendy Gennaula • July 16, 2008 • The two week countdown to the fringe begins. We are beginning to sketch out our family schedule. I am thrilled that the Rarig Center complex will be hosting shows again this year. Those venues, along with Mixed Blood, the Southern, and Bedlam are all within walking distance. Plus, it is easy to find a nice outdoor spot to enjoy a packed lunch between kids’ fringe shows. We always make our way to Jimmy John’s at least once.
Tommy, now 10, is determined to see all of the “official” kids’ shows this year. Unlike last year, it is humanly possible. He reminded me that his favorite show last year was NOT a kids’ show. It was “Around the World in 80 days in under 60 minutes”.
After the first fringe show case at the Ritz I added one more for our family. “Silent Poetry-Mime”:http://www.fringefestival.org/2008/show/?id=913 Inspired by Marcel Marceau by Dean Hatton. Under 5 are not permitted. Hatton’s three minute snippet was brilliant. I want to see more. Plus, 6 weeks into summer vacation I would like to emphasize to my boys the power of silence.
Top Hat Theater’s “Robin Hood The Musical!”:http://www.fringefestival.org/2008/show/?id=799 was the only Kids’ Fringe offering at the showcase. Two young actors sang a Broadway style pop power-ballad with strong clear voices. When my children were younger Top Hat’s shows were among their favorites. The shows follow a set formula and are earnest and irony-free. That is their strength. I highly recommend this as a “first fringe show” for a younger child.
More to come.
Wendy Gennaula is a singer and actress in the Twin Cities. She is the mother of two extraordinary Fringelings.