Donald Rupe’s ‘From Here’ makes big splash at Orlando Fringe

By : Jeremy Williams
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ABOVE: “From Here” writer-director Donald Rupe accepts his Watermark Splash Awards. (Photo by AG Photography)

ORLANDO | Central Florida Community Arts Director of Theatre Donald Rupe is no stranger to Orlando Fringe, bringing fan favorites “Gorgeous” and “Bitch, Perfect” to the festival in 2018 and 2017, respectively. But he managed to make a big splash with his latest Fringe musical, “From Here.”

The new musical and gay love story about an Orlando native who is just trying his best to balance love, his difficult mother and all the things life throws at him along with his tight knit group of friends swept Watermark’s third annual Splash Awards.

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2019 Orlando Fringe Review: “Pack Animals”

By : Danny Garcia
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S.E. Grummet and Holly Brinkman bring the comical story of two summer camp scouts lost in the woods to life in the quirky comedy “Pack Animals.”

Brinkman is a highly skilled camper and is paired up with Grummet who is, well, not a highly skilled camper.  Grummet actually has no clue  about camping and doesn’t really want to be there. These two embark on an adventure reminiscent of an 80’s sitcom, but raunchier and more fun. To fully explain what this show is about would require a few bites of some questionable berries found in the woods. This hilarious comedy includes ukuleles, musical numbers about mansplaining, a bear attack and even sex with mythical woodland creatures. Not to mention the show also features animal puppets.

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2019 Orlando Fringe Review: ‘Dandy Darkly’s All Aboard’

By : Danny Garcia
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There’s something so dandy and a little dark how Dandy Darkly masterfully delivers his stories, hence the name. In “Dandy Darkly’s All Aboard” he goes back to his Southern roots and tells the tale of Lil’ Biscuit, Aunty, the Colonel and the sleepy little Southern town they reside in.

Like a symphonic locomotive, this storytelling drag clown skillfully wove several stories together of various topics including racism, mysticism, gender identity as well as an observation of our world’s obsession and addiction to technology.

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2019 Orlando Fringe Review: ‘A Briefs History In Time’

By : Danny Garcia
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Our favorite Canadian burlesque boys are back with their new show, “A Briefs History In Time.”  The adventure begins with Furry Rosa (emcee and host, Shangina Twain) having traveled back in time from the year 3000 during Fempocalypse, an event that has left men (not the species but the gender) extinct. Rosa has come to our time to observe, study and find male specimens, so why not the male specimens of BoylesqueTO.

“A Briefs History In Time” is a departure from what Orlando Fringe patrons may have seen with “Oh Manada!” and “‘Mo Manada!” but this latest show is still very entertaining.

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2019 Orlando Fringe Review: ‘Daphne and Me: A Boy Meets Girl Story’

By : Danny Garcia
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Real, raw, passionate and—thanks to the Rainbow Venue—up close and personal.

BeeJay Clinton’s autobiographical, one-person show “Daphne and Me: A Boy Meets Girl Story” is all of that and more. A brutally honest look into the psyche of a man who is as unsure of himself as BeeJay as he is sure of himself as Daphne, his drag persona.

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2019 Orlando Fringe Review: ‘7-N-7 (An Old-Fashioned Musical Reimagined)’

By : Jeremy Williams
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“Seven Brides for Seven Brothers” is a classic movie musical from the 1950s about seven brothers who all want a wife, it’s right there in the title. Modern cinephiles have called the musical an “outdated” and “misogynistic” film that “hasn’t aged well.” That is a bit of an understatement as the story involves kidnapping the would-be wives, taking them to their cabin in the mountains and causing an avalanche so that the women will be stuck with them until spring. How romantic.

Luckily, producer and director John Henderson — along with Bryan Jager, Cody Troesch, Lidnsey D. Smith and a local team of talented performers — decided to update the story with the new original musical “7-N-7 (An Old-Fashioned Musical Reimagined).”

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2019 Orlando Fringe Review: ‘Hombre’

By : Danny Garcia
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Ana Cuellar, the artistic director behind 2018’s Patron’s Pick (Pink) “Luna,” returns to Fringe with “Hombre.”

“Hombre,” with the use of modern dance, ballet and acrobatics, tells the story of love and how it can save humanity. Cuellar shows how love is seductive, intense, unrequited and even something we mourn as portrayed in the number dedicated to the victims of the Pulse tragedy.

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2019 Orlando Fringe Review: ‘The Complete History of Drag in a Few Mo-mo’

By : Danny Garcia
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LGBTQ history in the world isn’t told in mainstream media very often. There isn’t, at least widespread, a push in textbooks and history class to educate on the accomplishments of LGBTQ people. Many of the stories and events that shaped the community live on by being passed from one generation to another in the form of stories, jokes and backstage quips by our drag queens. David LeBarron captures this perfectly in his show “The Complete History of Drag in a Few Mo-mo.”

LeBarron jumps from narrator at the beginning of the show to Auntie, an experienced drag queen who’s time on this earth is limited.  In their dressing room of her local gay bar, Auntie guides the new girl — a neophyte drag queen — through queer history.

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2019 Orlando Fringe Review: ‘A Showgirls Musical’

By : Danny Garcia
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The team behind Fringe hits “ThanksKilling the Musical” and “S#IT!” are back to tackle one of cinema’s most over-the-top, so-bad-it’s-good cult classic films to come out of the 90’s — Paul Verhoeven’s “Showgirls.”

“A Showgirls Musical” follows the basic — we’ll say plot? — of the original film. Aspiring star Nomi (Played by Jillian Gizzi) hitchhikes her way into Sin City to make it big. She starts off as a stripper at the Cheetah and “works” her way to top headliner in what’s supposed to be one of Vegas’ premier shows.

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Vote for your Orlando Fringe LGBTQ favorites in the 3rd annual Watermark Splash Awards

By : Jeremy Williams
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Orlando Fringe has kicked off its 28th season and this year features more LGBTQ shows than ever before.

So with all of this amazing LGBTQ talent, we want to know what are readers think about the shows and talent – both on stage and behind the scenes – and which ones are the best of the best in LGBTQ-themed Fringe. Welcome to the third annual Watermark Splash Awards.

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The 28th annual Orlando International Fringe Theatre Festival showcases 30+ LGBTQ shows

By : Jeremy Williams
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The Orlando International Fringe Theatre Festival returns to Loch Haven Park and surrounding venues for its 28th season May 14-27.

The folks at Orlando Fringe reviewed the applications of more than 350 shows and whittled them down to 140, including 33 LGBTQ-themed shows. They will play at the Orlando Shakespeare Theatre, Orlando Repertory Theatre and the Orlando Museum of Art, as well as a handful of venues throughout the area including the Breakthrough Theatre of Winter Park and Savoy Orlando. It will also be the final year for The Venue Orlando’s “Black Venue” and the first year for The LGBT+ Center Orlando, which will be home to the newly-named “Rainbow Venue.”

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Tymisha Harris brings legendary entertainer Josephine Baker to the Central Florida stage

By : Jeremy Williams
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Tymisha Harris had a tour de force year in 2018 with her show, “JOSEPHINE, a burlesque cabaret dream play.” Harris—who co-created the one-woman show with director-producer Michael Marinaccio and playwright-musical director Tod Kimbro—debuted “JOSEPHINE” in 2016 where it won “Outstanding Solo Performance” and “Best Show” at the San Diego Fringe Festival.

The show was a hit playing here in Orlando and across North America, but Harris and crew took “JOSEPHINE” to another level with a four-week Off-Broadway run in New York last year.

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