More News from the Hollywood Fringe Festival

  • 06/28/2013
  • Reporters Desk

Frank Smith, Ryan Harrison and Jen Burton in Roger Wodehouse. Photo by Trisha Harrison

The Hollywood Fringe Festival continues through June 30 and there are still plenty of plays left to satisfy most appetites.

We dropped in on three, and while not all of the plays were great, everything was fun and interesting.

Best by far was Lost Moon Radio Presents Roger Wodehouse’s Androgymnasium, a long title for a delicious look at what might have been the BBC equivalent of Sesame Street, if that show had a drug-crazed androgynous rock star as it’s host. Imagine David Bowie doing Mr. Rogers, with a low-rent Stones playing in the background.

Ryan Harrison is delicious (and surprisingly sincere) as Roger Wodehouse, who is both an international rock star and a fashion icon (as he tells you several times). This show is billed as the only surviving copy of the TV series, which ran four episodes (and a little more) and then was canceled, with all the tapes, save this beta-max copy found at an oriental swap meet, burned. Roger’s band included the befuddled but loveable Terence, Roger’s oldest mate (Will Maier) and the comedy is part Monty Python, part Saturday Night Live and all original. The sold-out house loved it. One performance remains June 29 at 6:30 p.m.

The Real Housekeepers of Studio City is a world-premier musical being given its first showing at the Fringe. It features not only a real housewife (who wants to star in the show of that name), but a host of housekeepers. After all, you can’t be on reality TV if you do your own housework. The songs, with music by Joe Greene (no, not Giuseppe Verdi) and book and lyrics by Heidi Powers and Tom Moore, needs a bit of work, but it has its heart in the right place: squarely in the middle of the satire bulls-eye, and stars Lani Shipman as Ashley, who was deserted by her husband after five years in suburbia. Ryan O’Connor is Scot, her gay best friend. Together they bring a little believability to a show that is part fantasy, part reality. Its last performance was June 28 at 7 p.m.

Neko, Barbara Ishida’s new play about a cat, a grandmother and two grand-daughters dealing with that grandmother, that vicious cat and the early death of their mother, got an earnest performance despite technical difficulties (their projection system wasn’t working Thursday evening). The performers were interesting, the play slightly less so, but with the projection system intact it might have been better. One performance, June 30 at 10 p.m., remains.

Only two days remain for this year’s Fringe, but more than 60 plays are scheduled, so you can still go and see some interesting theater for little money, served up with a lot of love.

Tickets are all around $12.

Details: (323)
Venue: Fourth Annual Hollywood Fringe Festival
Location: 6209 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles

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