Orlando Fringe 2022 Review: 'The Princess Strikes Back'

The Force is strong with this fresh, funny celebration of fangirldom.


If anything positive for the performing arts has come out of the pandemic, it's the wealth of original scripts that originated online as Zoom shows and are now emerging live on stage. A stellar example of this current wave of COVID-born work is The Princess Strikes Back, writer-performer Victoria Montalbano’s winning one-woman tribute to the original Star Wars trilogy’s lasting impact on her love life.

As a single woman in her 30s, Montalbano is living out her problematic fantasies by commanding the stage in a Jedi-inspired plus-sized gold bikini. Her tightly-paced monologue interweaves her adoration for George Lucas’ space-opera saga with navigating the asteroid belt of unrequited love, from teenage crushes to her struggles as a heartbroken, ramen-broke performer in Chicago’s improv comedy scene.

Desperately seeking both acting jobs and adult relationships, she longs for a C-3PO for her R2-D2, but OkCupid only introduces her to a goofy galaxy of cantina denizens.
If you’ve ever wanted to know how late virginity is like leftover Thanksgiving pie, or why working in non-union community theater in suburban Sarasota is more dangerous than joining the Rebel Alliance, this is the sci-fi sex confessional for you. Montalbano may not have found her Han yet, but she’s empowered enough to feel comfortable flying Solo. And whether or not she eventually lands her own Millennium Falcon co-pilot, the Force is strong with this fresh, funny celebration of fangirldom.

Tickets and show info: The Princess Strikes Back: One Woman's Search for the Space Cowboy of her Dreams

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