Reviews - Fringe 2015

Fringe 2015 Review: Panacea!

By Ryan McGreal
Published July 17, 2015

The audience laughed often and loudly during this loose collection of surreal comedy sketches based around four variously-damaged characters forced to submit to life's absurdities.

After an opening montage that introduces the characters and their respective diagnoses, the show launches into a super-awkward visit between a just-dumped woman (Bartolucci) and her less-than-supportive friend (Reoch), who has also invited her boyfriend (Lorenzo) for some hilariously icky overlove.

The show's many highlights include:

The company is Toronto-based and the show reflects a variety of Toronto icons - in fact, it felt somewhat like a Toronto version of Portlandia - but the actors also tossed a few funny bones to their Hamilton audience.

This was their first live performance at Hamilton Fringe but there were only a few rough edges. The performers deftly handled a couple of lighting position errors with some quick-witted improvisation.

As a sketch piece, the whole many not add up to much more than the sum of its parts - but those parts were very, very funny indeed. You will not be disappointed.

Ryan McGreal, the editor of Raise the Hammer, lives in Hamilton with his family and works as a programmer, writer and consultant. Ryan volunteers with Hamilton Light Rail, a citizen group dedicated to bringing light rail transit to Hamilton. Ryan wrote a city affairs column in Hamilton Magazine, and several of his articles have been published in the Hamilton Spectator. His articles have also been published in The Walrus, HuffPost and Behind the Numbers. He maintains a personal website, has been known to share passing thoughts on Twitter and Facebook, and posts the occasional cat photo on Instagram.


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