Orlando Fringe Review 2016: Oh Manada!

By : Danny Garcia
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When attending the Fringe Festival with a Fringe virgin, what kind of show should one expose them to? Perhaps a light-hearted musical, a deep dark dramatic play, maybe a pantomime comedy?

Nah, screw all that.. I decided to go for the skin! And there’s lot of skin as there usually is at the Fringe this year. As usual, there are several groups of burlesque shows featuring all sorts of ladies, you also have some rock hard and perfectly manicured men gyrating a la Magic Mike, not bad but just watch out for the puddles of baby oil.

The skin I decided to expose the Fringe virgin and myself to was that of the pasty and not so firm variety. Not as neatly manicured and even decorated in ink, one had a maple leaf tattooed on his body. This was OH MANADA!, presented by the Canadian all-male burlesque troupe Boylesque T.O. (Picture the Try-Guys from Buzzfeed, seriously these guys were like their Canadian counterparts).

Playing to a decent crowd at  10:30 p.m. on the opening Thursday, the show was not without its technical glitches (like some mic problems), but hey, it’s Fringe. I recall the days where you watched a show in an empty store fronts without a/c on Orange avenue.

A show like this is everything I come to love about Fringe, completely unapologetic and fun, filled with Canadian puns, fun facts and lots of Canadian stereotypes. I won’t lie, there was wood when the lumberjack fondled his chainsaw.

The show is hosted/emceed by Canadian born Jeopardy host Alex Trebek and features a total of four male dancers. In various performances ranging from the lumberjack mentioned earlier, a seal clubbing Inuit (did I mention, unapologetic? Sorry PETA), a Mounty and what’s Canada without hockey? Keeping true to the form of burlesque, there’s the tease before the big reveals – what makes this stand out from another male review, these guys don’t try to make their performance more masculine but borrow from in their own Canadian way, the traditional female burlesque act. Certainly, something you will not catch at the Epcot Canada pavilion.

Oh Manada! is selling Canuck sex appeal and loads of laughs at the Orange venue. Tipping wasn’t allowed during the performances but certainly encouraged after the show, p.s. now you got a way to pay back all those Canadian quarters that slip into your change, problem solved, am I right? Break out the Molson, I was all aboot this show!

Read all of Watermark’s coverage of the 2016 Orlando Fringe Theatre festival here.

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