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Arts & Culture

Fringe Fest 2013 reviews

Our top seven picks

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KEY OF E

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HITLER’S LI’L ABOMINATION


The 101 unique shows that made up 2013’s Orlando International Fringe Theatre Festival are winding down (awwww). Sunday, May 26, is your last day to see shows, but if you’re still wondering where to spend your ticket dollars, we’re here to help. On these pages, we’ve selected seven of our reviewers’ top picks of the festival so far. Of course, Fringe-goers should keep an eye on our ongoing coverage at orlandoweekly.com, photos.orlandoweekly.com and blogs.orlandoweekly.com, where we’ve posted almost 50 reviews, along with coverage of the free outdoor stage, the Visual Fringe warehouse, Kids Fringe and more. – Jessica Bryce Young

HITLER’S LI’L ABOMINATION
through Saturday, May 25 | Pink Venue | orlandofringe.org | $10

When a show is titled Hitler’s Li’l Abomination, you feel kind of weird telling people “I loved it! It reminded me of all my relatives!” But if you grew up among Germans – especially ones who were only a few years removed from the Old Country – you’ll be beside yourself with nostalgic laughter as monologist Annette Roman impersonates and then deconstructs that side of her family. (A particular bull’s-eye: The Germans, she points out, are the only people on Earth who can talk and inhale simultaneously.)

To be fair, Roman has more raw material to work with than us garden-variety Amerikrauts. Her mother wasn’t just German, but an alumnus of the Hitler Youth for Girls. Meanwhile, her father was a Hungarian Jew who narrowly survived the death camps. And he went on to be the disciplinarian in the family. Listen, if NBC could come up with anything this good, they’d be beating QVC on Thursday nights.

Abomination would be worth your time even if Roman stopped at making fun of her unique background. She doesn’t. On a more serious note, she demonstrates how that background has influenced her adult relationships – including her relationship with 21st-century American society itself, which is quick to use Nazism as a cheap, lazy metaphor yet barely comprehends its true implications.

Against all odds, Roman offers a fairly fresh perspective on the age-old question “Can we ever really learn from history?” If you’re in the market for such a perspective, listen closely for the ghosts of generations’ worth of Tantes and Omas: They’re floating just outside the Pink Venue, beckoning, “In here, Liebchen! In here!” – Steve Schneider

KEY OF E
through Saturday, May 25 | Green Venue | orlandofringe.org | $11

Key of E, the apocalyptic “junk rock” musical by Orlando musician Andy Matchett (of local band the Minks) and actor-writer Corey Volence, promises to “have it all,” and for once at the Fringe there’s truth in advertising. Shadow puppets, rage monsters, imaginary girlfriends, kick-ass rock & roll and more are all packed into this passionate (if slightly unpolished) 60-minute production.

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