Runner-up: ‘How to Quit your Day Job’ The story
of four D.C. millennials trying to make it as artists, this musical is likely to strike a chord among Fringe’s core audience.
‘The Last Burlesque’
This play features plenty of song and dance, but it’s all in the service of a serious plot: A daughter struggles to save the family business, which happens to be a burlesque club.
Runner-up: ‘Barenaked Comedy’
Modern burlesque artists often embrace the inherent comedy of tame T&A. “Barenaked Comedy” takes it a step further with a variety show starring sexy dancers and stand-up comedians, though not at the same time.
Most Likely to Confuse Your Roommate
If you score a ticket to this performance, Brian Feldman, above, will come over to your house at an agreed-upon time and wash all the dishes in your sink. Then, he’ll cold-read a monologue of your choosing and ask you which task he did better. “This is not an act,” he says. “I will be washing dishes, by hand, in hot water, to the best of my ability.”
Runner-up: ‘Sonata: The Naked Theatre Project’
The Naked Theatre Project is known for abstract plays, and this one is no exception. At one point in “Sonata,” two janitors in paper coveralls stalk through the audience shouting “spot!” while their compatriot cleans his ears onstage.
‘Ambien Date Night’
Connie, a lonely government economist (Katie Maconaughey, below), takes Ambien to get some sleep. The drug causes her saucy alter-ego to emerge and pick up Ty, the cute guy who works down the street. Playwright (and Express freelancer) Jessica Erin Bylander has never taken Ambien herself; she got the idea from her aunt, who would drive to the store and buy canned Juicy Juice during her medication-induced sleep.
Runner-up: ‘Belle and the Beasties’
In this version, the kiss doesn’t work. The Beast remains a beast, and he flees to the land of monsters with his fair love in hot pursuit.
‘Dust to Dust’
The Great Depression looks pretty good in this musical about a farmer (Preston Kemp, right) who travels to New York and gets entangled with a famous jazz singer (Andrea Matten, left). Glamorous gowns and newsboy caps abound, as a talented cast of recent Robinson Secondary School graduates sing and dance their way through the 1930s.
This steampunk retelling of “Alice in Wonderland” promises plenty of Victorian fashions with a retro-futuristic edge. In this version, the heroine must master her anxieties about growing up by navigating the madcap world inside her own head.
‘War and Peas’
A trio of vegetables escape from the refrigerator and go on a treacherous journey across the kitchen to save their pal, a tomato, from the fruit bowl. The fable, which encourages healthy eating, features original songs and a choreographed dance/fight with a silverware gang.
Runner up: ‘The Giant Turnip’
Using handcrafted puppets, real-life opera singers Ingrid Cowan Hass and Ole Hass tell the story of a farmer and his wife, who struggle to pull an overgrown tuber from their garden. Farm animals and neighbors come to their aid, while shadow puppets show what on earth is going on underground.
‘The Out of Tooners’
A trio of actors (from left, Leana Savoie, Andrew Tardif, Nick Fragale) transform into live-action cartoons in this play about siblings Bugsy, Lucy and Baby Wee Wee, who are kicked out of Toon Town and immigrate to America. They’ll tackle serious issues like race relations, gun control and women’s rights through acrobatics, sketch and song.
Runner-up: ‘Cheeky Monkey Sideshow Presents: CMSS X 3D, OK?’
These guys will do anything to get your attention, be it knife swallowing, walking on nails or telling hokey jokes.
Various locations; through Aug. 2, $17 per show, one-time purchase of button ($7) required, multi-show passes available; see capitalfringe.org for details.
Read more about this year’s Capital Fringe festival: