Victoria Fringe Festival 2018: Quick Bites & Where to Find Them

 

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Runs Aug 27 to Sept 22, Victoria, British Columbia, Canada

Even active Fringers need a moment to snack in between shows. With the long weekend coming up, that may be tough to do as the time in between shows is at most 30 minutes. Where can folks go to refuel? Unless a timeout is used for a proper meal, nibbling in line is what I tend to do instead of sitting for a spell.

The official event guide offers three places to hit. By showing your button, a 10% discount is applied, but one of these stops is for dine-in than take-out. Hardly many eateries are mentioned in this year’s booklet.

I offer an expanded list for those looking for quick meals to have while waiting in line. This list is organized by close proximity to the venues. Sadly, not a lot of options exist within a short walking distance of Langham Court (Venue 5). Bubby Rose’s (1022 Cook Street) can satisfy with their pizzas and pastries, but on evenings when most of the shows take place during the weekday, they are closed. Cook St. Village proper is approximately 10 minutes away and not many folks are willing to run.

Venues One (Victoria Event Center) to Four (VCM Wood Hall)

For sweets like macaroons, La Roux Patisserie (519 Fisgard St), Fol Epi (732 Yates Street, they serve sandwiches too) and Empire Donuts (736 Yates Street, inside the mall) are worth the diversion to stop into. They provide ample recharge options for performers too if they have yet to find these two operations.

Superbaba (1325 Blanshard), Efes (788 Yates) and Brickyard Pizza (784 Yates) are also viable options for warmer meals. All of them offer delicious toasted bites. My personal preference for Middle Eastern food is with Efes. Their döners always tickle my fancy over Superbaba’s shawarmas. As for falafels, the jury is still out.

Sakura Grocery (1213 Quadra) is closer to The Metro on Quadra and VCM Wood Hall for those not wanting to venture far. While their sushi prices are mildly high, the extra cost is worth it! Standard staples like California, spicy tuna or salmon rolls are available can be found. This operation is under new management and the quality has vastly improved since my visits from years ago.

Another option is a sandwich or pastry from the Deli in The Market on Yates (903 Yates). I always stop here for a drink as they have a huge variety to choose from.

Venue Six (Roxy Theatre)

Part and Parcel’s (2645 Quadra) many delectable take-out options are made fresh and orders hardly take over 10 minutes to make. This place always gets busy during the Fringe Festival season, so it is often best to arrive earlier than usual to avoid disappointment. Dine in options include 5th Street Bar & Grill (1028 Hillside Ave)

Venue Seven (St. Andrew’s Kirk Hall)

When bouncing between one side of town to another, a stop by The Dutch Bakery (718 Fort Street) for their pies is a must. These buttery delights are the reason why I’m rotund! The crust is oh so wonderful, and the window display of their many tarts … Oh my! Although this secret is mostly known to locals, Noodlebox (818 Douglas Street) has been the top pick for take-out for many an event in town—especially near the Inner Harbour. Their quality is great, and options include no spice to the extreme. Plus, you can dine-in too! This establishment is just one of two franchise operations worth mentioning. Beavertails (602 Broughton) for fried bread (with your choice of cinnamon or Nutella) or poutine is worth a stop.

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Victoria Fringe Festival 2018, on Death and Fake Ghost Tours!

Amazing things are happening at the 2018 Victoria Fringe Festival. More touring acts are starting (Tues night offered a quick preview at The Metro Studio), and if Death from Ingmar Bergman’s Seventh Seal is waiting on the wings, I doubt he’d want to hang out with comedian Rob Gee. This figure would fall apart in laughter. I digress. The rhythms from this slam poet and the fact he can keep it up for close to an hour is simply amazing in itself.

death-1008-1

Location:
VCM Wood Hall
900 Johnson Street
Victoria, BC

Remaining shows:
Aug 30 8pm
Aug 31 7:30pm
Sept 1 10:45pm
Sept 2 8:15pm

Death, a Romantic Comedy certainly positions Rob Gee as a tour de force! His past work, Kevin, King of Egypt and Pandemonium, are gonzo. This year’s Death, A Romantic Comedy is intriguing enough and I wonder if my appreciation of gallows humour is why I’m drawn to such a morbid subject.

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[Victoria Fringe Festival 2016] SMUS Shake It Up with Disney’s Camp Rock!

CAMP-ROCK_4CLOCATION:
St. Michaels
University School
3400 Richmond Road
Saanich, BC

SHOWTIMES:
Fri Aug. 26 – 7pm
Sat Aug. 27 – 2pm
Sat Aug. 27 – 7pm

Sometimes it is tough to decide on what to take on as the first Victoria Fringe Festival presentation for the 2016 season. This year, the decision was a no-brainer and I had to see the results of what St. Michaels University School (SMUS) Summer Musical Theatre program produced. The folks involved always deliver a quality educational curriculum to teach the next rising stars the basics while having fun at the same time. On opening night, they put on the musical version of Disney’s Camp Rock.

This show highlights the musical stylings of bands like The Jonas Brothers and the modern sounds of the past decade. Like ’em or not (every generation has their favourite musicians), those who grew up with them had a rollicking time with this production. Opening night was not without a few chuckle-worthy moments, gaffes included; the group was able to roll with it and continue on. They also helped each other out on stage when lines were forgotten and I believe that’s the heart of what this program extols than to provide a higher calibre show other local professional theatre schools like Canadian College of Performing Arts works on. I’ve seen their production of Little Shop of Horrors years ago, and that was a memorable show to which I grinned like a Cheshire Cat from Alice in Wonderland when rubber bands were shot towards audiences!

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Ed’s Victoria Fringe Festival Picks of 2016

FringeBadgeA few fond favourites are back at this year’s Victoria Fringe Festival, and in my picks, I hope to do more than a few “Dick Tricks” to get to each venue spread around the city to get my theatre nerd on. This year is special as this event is celebrating its 30th anniversary! I’m betting there will be cake, and a whole lot more surprises! In order to feast upon the entire list, I do recommend that for locals, to check out the opening ceremonies which takes place at Centennial Square. An entire preview will take place then and if that is not enough to salivate the taste buds, perhaps drinks will be offered too (at cost). This preview night will take place August 24th.

In the following, I offer my selection in what caught my eye and hope you can join me. If not at this particular festival, then perhaps at another Fringe that’s closer to where each person lives. This unique style of theatre can be found nearly worldwide. From Vancouver to Edinburgh (where it first started), this small-scale production offers a better, if not intimate, experience.

Passes can be bought at the Intrepid Theatre’s office on 1609 Blanshard or online through Ticket Rocket:

ON THE FRINGE (DOCUMENTARY FILM)
BROKEN TURTLE PRODUCTIONS

DATES:
Sep 3, 2016

LOCATION: Victoria Event Centre (Fringe Venue 1)

Still don’t know what Fringe Festivals are about? Well, this documentary should tell all! This video documentary began as a chronicle of artists doing the Canadian Fringe Festival circuit and it evolved from there. It goes on a road trip and shows what life is like on the other side of the stage! Best of all, this screening is by donation! All you have to do is present your badge.

6DickTricks

6 QUICK DICK TRICKS:
A DIRK DARROW INVESTIGATION

RACING SLOTH PRODUCTIONS

DATES:
Fri Aug 26 – 5:00pm
Sat Aug 27 – 8:00pm
Sun Aug 28 – 10:00pm
Wed Aug 31 – 8:00pm
Fri Sep 2 – 9:45pm
Sat Sep 3 – 2:00pm

LOCATION: The Roxy Theatre (Fringe Venue 7)

I’ve chatted with Tim Motley in the past about his previous shows, and I’m glad to see that he’s coming back to show a few new magic tricks along with a noir narrative to appease the Sherlock Holmes in me to solve. Not every show is going to be exactly the same, as audiences can sometimes trip him up. The laughs are great, and I’ll be in line to see what he has up his sleeve for this year.

Playful8

AN IMPROVISED
QUENTIN TARANTINO 2 –
THE PLAYFUL 8

DATES:
Thu Aug 25 – 6:45pm
Fri Aug 26 – 10:15pm
Sat Aug 27 – 2:30pm
Wed Aug 31 – 10:15pm
Thu Sept 1 – 8:15pm
Sat Sept 3 – 8:45pm

LOCATION: Victoria Event Centre (Fringe Venue 1)

The first time I saw Paper Street Theatre‘s show, I laughed myself silly. With a title implying that this sequel of sorts is inspired by the latest Tarantino movie, I have to wonder what can go wrong. I suspect a basic plot will keep the night merrily moving along, but as for what happens, feedback from audiences will dictate the performance. Dave Morris leads his ensemble cast and I wonder how fast the eight will get whittled down to one?

Will There be Further Adventures of Ape Man and Fish Boy for Victoria, BC?

ape man and fish boyEach Adventure of Ape Man and the Fish Boy will no doubt be different and I certainly like to see them again. On May 3rd, they were billed as a duo of secret agents and on May 4th (the show I attended), they are performers going on a trip through time to undo a misfire as they took to the Intrepid Theatre Club stage to play … well, they did not even get that far in a funny way.

This act is still in development and in what I saw, I loved the camaraderie Rod Peter Jr. (Atomic Vaudeville) and Charlie Ross (One Man Star Wars) shared on stage. They’re buddies in real life and the concept they are shaping (mixing a hint of mime, pre-recorded cabaret-style music and geeky stand-up) feels like a blend of what I loved seeing from the days of the Carol Burnett Show when Harvey Korman and Tim Conway took to stage for their acts. In reality, they are working in the absurdist theatre medium, like in Monty Python. In the cinematic sense, I can see a style reminiscent of Rob Brydon and Steve Coogan’s show in Michael Winterbottom’s movie, The Trip. I could tell they’re fellow nerds (my Spidey sense kicked in) when they were riffing on recent pop culture products like Back to the Future, Batman, Doctor Who and Mad Max, to name a few. I look forward to keeping tabs on where this new comedic duo will go next. There’s a possibility of taking the show to Vancouver and Toronto according to Peter Jr. He also mentioned the thought of testing it out in the Fringe theatre circuit before going nationwide.

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One Man Star Wars Does The Dark Knight Parody!

Dark-Knight-web-imageNov 27 & 28, 2015
Intrepid Theatre
1609 Blanshard St #2
Victoria, BC, Canada

Feb 18 -21, 2016
Waterfront Theatre
1412 Cartwright St.
Vancouver BC, Canada

Charles Ross, the One Man Virtuoso of the Star Wars and Lord of the Rings (LotR) stage has a new act! In One Man Dark Knight: A Batman Parody, he will be presenting his take of Christopher Nolan’s trilogy into a reduced format that will play out for an hour. Trying to figure out what trilogy to tackle next was difficult for this performer.

“It took a lot of time to figure out what I wanted to do as my next show. I wanted to find another Star Wars / Lord of the Rings type of film to adapt, and Nolan’s take on Batman was the only one that for me — pound for pound — I was really happy with,” said Ross.

In a prior interview with me for Absolute Underground (revised and reprinted here), he revealed what the story comes down to is about a disenfranchised person who’s least able to affect much change in his station in life. Like Frodo, a guy that lives in the Shire, or Luke Skywalker, a kid from a farm on the planet Tatooine, adventure comes to their front door. It whisks them away.

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