Thursday, May 18, 2017

Orlando Fringe 2017 review: 'Fruit Flies Like a Banana: World Tour'

Posted By on Thu, May 18, 2017 at 5:46 PM

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Fruit Flies Like a Banana scored back-to-back spots on my Fringe Favorites lists in 2015 and 2016 by melding lyrically loony musicianship with color guard-like choreography. For this year's World Tour edition, an opening act on two-wheeled "hoverboards" gets the show off with a bang (hopefully not literally, given their volatile batteries) before it settles into an audience-assisted format, in which the running order is determined by countries randomly selected from an inflated globe.

As conservatory-trained instrumentalists, the Fourth Wall ensemble — composed of flautist Hilary Abigana, horn player Neil Parsons and percussionist Greg Jukes — leans towards classics of the Western repertoire, but still includes nods to Eastern and indigenous music, including a lively didgeridoo number and a lovely tune on tiny Japanese cymbals. Fear not if you aren't a fan of classical music; their playlist also include a couple of my favorite tunes by the Decemberists and Dave Brubeck.

Last time, the troupe tied their selections to the alphabet, and with 26 pieces to squeeze in, several got short shrift. For this edition, fewer segments means each one gets ample breathing room, especially the breathtaking ode to Antarctica using Cirque-like "hamster wheels," which could be developed into a full show all its own. With broad appeal across all age groups, this year's threepeat proves that the positive buzz about this bunch is no fluke.

Fruit Flies Like a Banana: World Tour
The Fourth Wall, Boston, MA
Orange Venue
Friday, May 19, 7:00 PM
Saturday, May 20, 7:15 PM
Monday, May 22, 9:00 PM
Friday, May 26, 6:30 PM
Saturday, May 27, 2:45 PM

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