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What's at the Fringe Festival? 

2B (Or Not 2B) A.A. Amirault (Halifax). A bewitching, funny two-hander about the strange seduction of Franny---a once-promising visual artist specializing in the use of bodily fluids on canvas. Vanessa Walton-Bone as Franny gives a masterful, hilarious, in-character comic performance. (Graham Pilsworth) Comedy, 30min. Imperial Room, Neptune Theatre, Sat. Sept. 6, 3:45pm, 9pm; Sun. Sept. 7, 8pm. $6

Alastair MacDonald Songs From the Plays A concert by singer/songwriter Alastair MacDonald (Dartmouth). Cabaret, 60min. Khyber 3, Fri. Sept. 5, 8pm; Sat. Sept. 6, 4:15pm, 7:30pm; Sun. Sept. 7, 4pm. $6

Belindance Greatest Hips! Belindance (Halifax). The premiere belly dance troupe presents a feast for the eyes and ears. Dance, 65min. Neptune Studio Theatre, Fri. Sept. 5, 8:15pm; Sun. Sept. 7, 8pm. $10

Bone Jacked/Singing Seven at the Heat-Rise Jonathon Borden and Stewart Delo (Halifax). Two plays explore the labyrinth of human relationships. Performance art, 30min and 50min. Bus Stop Theatre, Fri. Sept. 5, 8:30pm; Sat. Sept. 6, 4pm. $5

Crown Hill CemeteryLisa Haas (Brooklyn, NY). As much as I liked Lisa Haas’ funny observations on death and her easy-going manner, the piece seemed somehow over-rehearsed. It felt like a stand-up comedy routine, although the aim seemed to be more like storytelling. (Kate Watson) Comedy, 50min. Khyber 2, Fri. Sept. 5, 6pm; Sat. Sept. 6, 7:30pm. $10

The Decaffination of Kofi Annan Noel James (Wales, UK). An hour’s show of comic material from the minstrel of understatement. Improv, 60min. Khyber 1, Fri. Sept. 5, 5:30pm; Sun. Sept. 7, 4pm. $10

Destination UnknownJane Langille (Halifax). A journey through one girl’s life and thoughts, mixed with music and segments about the absurdity of modern-day life. Comedy, 40min. Imperial Room, Sat. Sept. 6, 4:30pm; Sun. Sept. 7, 4:30pm, 7:45pm. $6

Dog TownBud Hunter (Halifax). A monologue filled with humorous stories and colour pictures of the many mutts that have wormed their way into Bud Hunter’s heart. The humour is not shake-your-sides funny, but there are enough guffaws along the way to make this an entertaining 45 minutes. (KW) Performance art, 45min. Khyber 3, Thurs. Sept. 4, 8:30pm; Fri. Sept. 5, 6:30pm; Sat. Sept. 6, 7:15pm; Sun. Sept. 7, 8:15pm. $4

Don’t Wanna Make My Brown Eyes BlueTaryn Della (Halifax). Fringe hit winner returns with a character-based, one-woman performance piece that will cause laughter and tears. Spoken word, 45min. Bus Stop Theatre, Sat. Sept. 6, 1:30pm, 8:15pm; Sun. Sept. 7, 2:30pm. $7

Gay White Trash Michael Best (Halifax). After a smash, sold-out debut run in 2005, this comedy garnered tons of Robert E. Merritt Award nominations for exposing a new shade of gay. Comedy, 65min. Bus Stop Theatre, Fri. Sept. 5, 6pm; Sat. Sept. 6, 6:45pm. $10

GiggleKaylon Fraser (Halifax). God’s going through a midlife crisis and cannot afford to buy a red convertible. Drama, 45min. Neptune Studio Theatre, Sat. Sept. 7, 5:15pm. $5

Half Past ThreeAnne Doyle and Sher Claine (Halifax). Thrill to this bright noir romp written and deliciously acted by the wickedly funny duo of Sher Clain and Ann Doyle. The setting? A nightclub. Backstage dressing room of a slinky and much-deceased lounge thrush. What’s left of her is a taped outline tracing where her body sprawled when first found. (GP) Comedy, 40min. Khyber 2, Thurs. Sept. 4, 6pm; Sat. Sept. 6, 3:15pm; Sun. Sept. 7, 8:30pm. $6

Honey and JupiterMeghan Hubely (Halifax). The play examines one of life’s most intimate relationships: A relationship with an eating disorder. Drama, 60min. Bus Stop Theatre, Sat. Sept. 6, 5:15pm. $5

In My Opinion...(The Mad, Mad Diary of A Menopausal Mama)Tanya Belliveau (Deep Brook). Birth, death and everything are on the agenda. Improv, 30min. Imperial Room, Fri. Sept. 5, 8pm; Sat. Sept. 6, 5pm, 8:15pm; Sun. Sept. 7, 2:30pm, 4:45pm. $5

Jest In MindTrevor Poole (Halifax). It’s like watching a talented busker who doesn’t fill the first three-quarters of the act with hollow come-ons, and doesn’t constantly hassle you for money. Poole can pull thoughts from the minds of audience members and, truth be told, I laid awake last night trying to work out how he executed some of his tricks. (KW) Magic, 45min. Khyber 1, Fri. Sept. 5, 7:15pm; Sat. Sept. 6, 9:30pm; Sun. Sept. 7, 2:45pm. $8

Jesus and Buddha Purple Octogon Theatre (Halifax). What would the Messiah and the Enlightened One do if they got together? Create the world, of course, or maybe go to war. Comedy, 60min. Khyber Two, Sat. Sept. 6, 6pm; Sun. Sept. 7, 7pm. $10

JewelDarlene MacNevin (Halifax). A funny, warm and touching tale of one woman’s struggle to find answers and meaning in what seems like a senseless tragedy. Drama, 60min. Khyber 1, Thurs. Sept. 4, 7:15pm; Sat. Sept. 6, 4pm, 6:45pm; Sun. Sept. 7, 6:45pm. $7

Joe: The Perfect ManRachelle Elie (Toronto). The stage is generally piled high with corpses at the end of a Shakespearean tragedy, but by the time the titular character gets through with Macbeth it looks more like a scene of a particularly rowdy kid’s birthday party. The show is laugh-out-loud funny but also surprisingly touching. (KW) Comedy, 60min. Neptune Studio Theatre, Fri. Sept. 5, 10pm; Sat. Sept. 6, 3:45pm; Sun. Sept. 7, 5:30pm. $10

Legends of CanadaChris Denholm (Toronto). Join storyteller Chris Denholm as he explores the legends, history and poetry of this great country. Storytelling, 60min. Khyber 3, Thurs. Sept. 4, 7pm; Fri. Sept. 5, 9:30pm; Sat. Sept. 6, 3:45pm. $4

Life is a CabaretSaints Alive! Theatre Society (Dartmouth). I’m the first to admit that I’m a big fan. That said, I can’t rave about their latest production. Maybe I caught them on an off day, when some of the voices weren’t at their best, or maybe the pacing of the show is too draggy for my tastes. But even when not at the very top of their game, this talented troupe is worth a look. (KW) Cabaret, 80min. Neptune Theatre Studio, Fri. Sept. 5, 6:30pm; Sat. Sept. 6, 8:30pm. $8

Me & JosephineLeslie Carvery (Halifax). For 50 years, Freda Josephine McDonald enthralled Parisians as the one, the only, Mademoiselle Josephine Baker. It’s this wondrously iconic figure and star dancer Leslie Carvery chose to present. Unfortunately, in lieu of the dancer portraying Baker to illuminate hothouse episodes of the diva’s remarkable life and to express her thoughts, the audience watched a TV presentation of a text-heavy Josephine Baker mini-bio. Carvery is a natural performer in need of a playwright. Come for the show. Stay for the dance. (GP) Dance, 60min. DANSpace, Sat. Sept. 6, 2pm, 9pm; Sun. Sept. 7, 3:15pm. $10

Medea ReduxMary Fay Coady (Halifax). A modern, one-woman show, written by Neil LaBute, based on Euripides’ Greek tragedy, Medea. Drama, 45min. Bus Stop Theatre, Fri. Sept. 5, 7:45pm; Sat. Sept. 6, 2:45pm. $5

Never Has BeenCorey Poirer (Eastern Passage). The story of a seasoned performer as shared through humorous, thought-provoking spoken word, storytelling and music. Storytelling/Music, 45min. Khyber 1, Fri. Sept. 5, 10pm; Sat. Sept. 6, 6:45pm; Sun. Sept. 7, 5:30pm. $5

Opening MorningStephen Pitman (Dartmouth). The story of a young writer teetering on the edge of success, told in a series of phone conversations with his smothering mother and unsupportive girlfriend. It’s a difficult set-up to pull off, as it can be boring to watch someone talk on the phone and listen to only one side of a conversation. However, actor Dylan Aucoin is a pleasure to watch. It’s not a play that’s going to set the world on fire, but it makes for good fringe fare. (KW) Comedy, 25min. Khyber 2, Fri. Sept. 5, 8:30pm; Sat. Sept. 6, 10pm; Sun. Sept. 7, 4:30pm. $3

Soul ExpressionsKendra MacLeod (Halifax). Come out for an evening of soul and funk in this something-for-everyone dance show. Dance, 60min. DANSpace, Fri. Sept. 5, 8:15pm; Sat. Sept. 6, 6:30pm; Sun. Sept. 7, 5:30pm. $6

Southern Time Tim Bartsch (Toronto). Born of the ‘70s, T, an alien from another world enters Dreamer through his dreams, eventually turning a young, depressed, HIV-ridden misfit into an international rock star. Drama/Musical, 90min. Khyber 2, Thurs. Sept. 4, 9:45pm; Fri. Sept. 5, 8:30pm; Sun. Sept. 7, 2pm. $10

SwelleSarah English (Halifax). Swelle is destined to stand out because of a tour de force performance by Sarah English. Directed by Jeremy Webb, the play is four pieces created by four female writers. The first is told by a nerdy teenage girl as she broadcasts her video blog. It’s cute and clever, although the quirky mannerisms and dorky snorts get annoying. The second piece---a kind of confession by a stylish urban woman about her childhood sexual experiences---was less successful. In the third piece, a driven young professional gets an accidental Brazilian while wheeling and dealing on her Blackberry. It was mildly amusing, but again, seems an unlikely set-up. In the final and most memorable piece, a young widow falls to pieces as she describes her attempts to go on living. (KW) Drama, 40min. Bus Stop Theatre, Fri. Sept. 5, 9:45pm. $6

The Confidence GameEva Madden (Halifax). Tobin is a struggling actor who has just lost another role to his best friend Johnny. Now he thinks he may have lost the beautiful Isobel to him as well. Drama, 60 min. Neptune Studio Theatre, Sat. Sept. 6, 6:45pm; Sun. Sept. 7, 4:15pm. $7

Wild AbandonKyle Gillis (Halifax). Award-winning playwright Daniel MacIvor’s weird and wonderful Wild Abandon got a standing ovation from the good-sized crowd, and it was well deserved. This one-man show stars Kyle Gillis, an outstanding actor who is perfect as the adorably charming and disturbingly disturbed protagonist. A wonderful example of what happens when a talented actor is married with a brilliant play. (KW) Comedy, 45min. Khyber 2, Thurs. Sept. 4, 8:15pm; Fri. Sept. 5 10:30pm; Sat. Sept. 6, 4:30pm; Sun. Sept. 7, 5:30pm. $7

WingmanA.A. Amirault (Halifax). The prequel to last year’s Fringe hit, A Bar Scene. Tom and Mark return as two guys looking for the right woman to come their way. Comedy, 40min. Khyber 1, Thurs. Sept. 4, 8:45pm; Sat. Sept. 6, 2:15pm; Sun. Sept. 7, 8:15pm. $8

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