Monday, May 22, 2017

Orlando Fringe 2017 review: 'Chase Padgett: Five Stars'

Posted By on Mon, May 22, 2017 at 10:07 AM

click to enlarge chasepadgett5stars_2017_4x4.jpg
Nashville Hurricane and 6 Guitars, the shows that launched Chase Padgett's success on the touring circuit, were both birthed in Orlando, so it's appropriate that the award-winning performer returned to our Festival for the world premiere of Five Stars, his first new solo show in four years. Unlike his previous productions, in which he skillfully portrayed a multiplicity of personas, this show is all Chase, all the time. Without fictional characters to hide behind, Padgett exposes himself through personal stories about relationships, drugs and science, pairing each autobiographical anecdote with a witty original song.

The stories range from crudely outrageous to keenly observed, often within the same tale. Much of the show is laugh-out-loud funny, but being robbed by a teenage neighbor leads Chase to an empathetic epiphany that is unexpected and enlightening. Padgett's bluesy guitar playing is a virtuoso as ever, his blisteringly fast rapping would leave Lin-Manuel Miranda tongue-tied, and impressively integrates improvisation and technology by building a self-accompanied song using a looping digital machine.

Padgett concludes the show with a stark rendition of "Change Gonna Come" that serves as a somber but hopeful reminder that "as bad as things are now, they used to be a lot worse." As a brand-new work, this show still has a few bugs to work out; there's no connective throughline, and the pacing needs some polishing. But I have faith that it won't be long before Chase's latest is winning real five-star reviews across the continent.

Chase Padgett: Five Stars
Silver Venue
Wednesday, May 24, 7:00 PM
Thursday, May 25, 10:45 PM
Saturday, May 27, 8:45 PM
Sunday, May 28, 7:00 PM

Tags: , , ,

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Orlando Weekly. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Orlando Weekly, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at

Orlando Weekly works for you, and your support is essential.

Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Central Florida.

Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.

Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Orlando’s true free press free.

Related Locations


Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

Read the Digital Print Issue

April 7, 2021

View more issues


© 2021 Orlando Weekly

Website powered by Foundation