There are certain genres of theatre that show up again and again at the Fringe, be they solo shows, puppet shows, or improv. For me, personally, one of the highlights of the Fringe is the sheer number and quality of shows that feature queer characters or story lines, and particularly those on offer from queer creators. From musicals to burlesque to one-woman shows, here are five randomly selected queer-themed shows for you to check out this season, and what we had to say about them!
CARMILLA (Pointed Cap Playhouse)
“…the show is a queer vampire burlesque show staged in a Victorian-themed Toronto bar, making it, in my opinion, one of the most memorable elevator pitches you’re likely to hear this year at the Toronto Fringe Festival… think Jane Eyre meets the Rocky Horror Picture Show.”
The Last Party (Next Step Productions)
“Imagine getting married to your partner weeks before you succumb to brain cancer. Now imagine experiencing that as a musical. Odd pairing of subject matter to style, right? But that’s what The Last Party from Next Step Productions offers us at this year’s Toronto Fringe Festival in this near-tearjerker.
A mixture of laughs, prose-style lyrics and dramatic scenes, The Last Party welcomes Michael Lomenda back to the Toronto stage post-Jersey Boys. “
The Ding Dong Girls (MoGo Co.)
“The Ding Dong Girls (MoGo Co) is my favourite show so far at the 2018 Toronto Fringe. It’s got everything I love; talented cast, great songs, fabulous costumes, excellent book, and a tap dance number. It’s funny and very raunchy and manages to touch on some serious topics as well.”
The Pansy Craze: A New Musical (Next Stop Productions)
“…throws the Gay Wayback Machine back to a liminal time in queerness, exploring a shimmering moment in history when gender-independence was briefly allowable in public before law-enforcement clamped its unforgiving jaws back down. I did love The Pansy Craze: A New Musical, and I did cry, and I am keen indeed to see how this show progresses.”
Is That How Clowns Have Sex? A One – Woman, Queer Clown Sex – Ed Show (Maximaliste Productions)
“Class is in session! Beatrice Haven (Fionna Ross) is educating Fringe audiences with a new sex education curriculum. Through a clown lens, Ms. Beatrice Haven and Maximaliste Productions attempt to answer the age-old question, Is That How Clowns Have Sex? (ITCH(e)S)… Audiences are in for a consensually wild night of awkward giggles, improv and heavy audience participation.”