Friday, August 4, 2017

Fringe Festival 2017: "Jefferson Township Sparkling Junior Talent Pageant: A New Musical"

Day: 1

Show: 2

Category: Musical

By: Devious Mechanics

Written by: Keith Hovis

Location: Mixed Blood Theatre

Summary: In search of something, a woman returns to her small town home and decides to finally continue an interrupted junior talent pageant from 20 years ago.

Highlights: This is another fun, fringey musical from the brilliant (and perhaps slightly warped) mind of Keith Hovis (see also Teenage Misery and Shakespeare Apocalypse). This one centers around the residents of a small town in Jefferson County, Iowa, and the late-20s former classmates who reunite to reenact the junior talent pageant they participated in 20 years ago, cut short due to a tragic accident. Frannie (Kelly Houlehan) had some success in "the Cities," and now finds herself living with her dad in the town where she grew up, where the first male pageant competitor Liam (Ryan London Levin), past his prime jock Travis (Zach Garcia), and spoiled little rich girl (and reigning champion) Val (Leslie Vincent) still live. In a Keith Hovis musical, we know there will be fun, catchy, clever tunes, dark humor, and blood, and this show fulfills all of those expectations. With fantastically broad and fully committed performances by the cast, a good time was had by all (note: unlike my first Fringe show, this one is decidedly not family-friendly!).

Read all of my Fringe mini-reviews here.