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 writes a city affairs column in Hamilton Magazine, and several of his articles have been published in the Hamilton Spectator. He also 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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