Monday, June 16, 2014

THIRD ANNUAL ST. LOU FRINGE • HEADS UP!

Here's a quick reminder about St. Lou Fringe's third annual arts festival coming up this week -- June 18th through June 22nd. This'll be gone before you know it, and this performing arts extravaganza is too awesome to let slip by.

The Lou's very own three year-old performing arts festival was recently recognized by CNN as one among nine "intriguing" fringe festivals worth checking out. Click here to read it. St. Lou Fringe works the way it has for the past couple of years, with thirty-five productions (up from thirty last year) and over 100 performances happening in six venues (Kranzberg Black Box, Kranzberg Studio, Duet, The Stage at KDHX, FUBAR, and Satori) around the midtown corridor. A festival badge, required for admission, can be purchased for 5 bucks online and at Fringe Central Station in Strauss Park. Individual performances range from 5 to around 12 bucks, which is seriously a good deal. You can check out the individual shows by clicking here. In addition to the shows, "Street Fringe" takes place daily with food trucks and buskers and live music at the stage at Fringe Central.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

HANDS ON A HARDBODY • New Line Theatre

New Line closes its 23rd season with "Hands on a Hardbody", a regional premiere. The musical is based on a 1997 documentary that follows several contestants vying to win a brand-new Nissan Hardbody truck. The challenger who can keep one hand on the truck for the longest time (no leaning, no squatting) wins it. In an economy that's kicked that crap out of everyone in the small town of Longview, Texas (boasting three Walmart Supercenters), the shiny red truck taking center stage represents a brass ring of sorts for everyone, but only one walks away with the keys.

Playing out over five days on the hot asphalt lot of Floyd King Nissan, this battle of endurance introduces us to ten hopefuls, starting with a cocky Benny Perkins (Jeffrey M. Wright), who won the competition two years earlier, has just enough knowledge of Asian philosophy to make him dangerous, and advises his competitors, "If you can't hunt with the big dogs, stay on the porch with the pups".

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