The Winnipeg Fringe Theatre Festival is bigger than ever... and so is
the CBC Fringe review crew. (In terms of number of people. In physical
size, they are individually about the same as usual.)
Anyhoo... here are the folks who'll be reviewing every show at the festival between now and July 22:
Friesen is an intern at CBC Winnipeg, a regular contributor to
Definitely Not the Opera (DNTO), and a first-time Fringe reviewer. He
hails from Brandon, Manitoba, and his love for Fringe is only surpassed
by his fear of audience participation.
Kaj Hasselriis co-wrote
and performed in a Fringe show of his own a few years back. He's also a
producer on DNTO, and in his extensive travels has met both George
Clooney and Barack Obama's grandmother.
Anna Lazowski is a
producer with DNTO and the Content Factory, and has been reviewing
Fringe for CBC and other local media outlets for the better part of the
last decade... in addition to being a past Fringe performer. (Follow
Anna on Twitter: @anna_lazowski)
Chandra Mayor's writing has
appeared in several anthologies. Her first book, August Witch: poems,
was short-listed for four Manitoba book awards and won the Eileen
McTavish Sykes Award for Best First Book. The title story from her most
recent book, All the Pretty Girls, was shortlisted for a 2008 CBC
Literary Award. Her words to live by: ""If I can't be a good example,
I'll just have to be a horrible warning."
Sarah Michaelson brings
the funk to the Review Crew. She's one of Winnipeg's favourite DJs -
you'll find her spinning records as Mama Cutsworth.
Palansky, a Fringe veteran, has a decade of experience writing and
performing with her theatre collective, the Conspiracy Network. She has
taught theatre to millions (billions, maybe?) of children across
Manitoba. Bacon bribes are accepted. They won't get you anywhere, but
she accepts them.
Al Rae is The Man in Winnipeg's comedy scene.
He's written comedy for radio, TV... and
yes, the Fringe... and his play
One Man's Show
debuted at the Carol Shields Festival of New Works in
2010. He's the artistic director of the Winnipeg Comedy Festival, and
the winner of an Italian Prix Roma Screenwriting Prize and a Gemini
Award for Little Mosque on the Prairie
producer with Manitoba SCENE, CBC's arts and culture website, and CBC
Music, the national music website. She's also no stranger to the radio
side of CBC: she's been music producer on Canada Live
, and host/producer
of CBC Radio's Northern Lights
and Arts Encounters
. She holds a
Master's degree in music, and enjoys performing with her husband, button
accordionist and composer Jim Hiscott.
CBC Radio producer
has been to other side of that rancid, make-shift
curtain as a Fringe performer, many times over. He knows that agony and
that ecstasy, and he'll aim to respond to these offerings with wit and
warmth, with his heart and mind fully dilated. Fun Fact: Rob Lowe
recently co-starred with Christopher in a movie shot in our humble hell
hole. (Follow Chris on Twitter: @readexpress)John Sadoway
as a producer for CBC Radio in Winnipeg, but his personal theatre
company, The Opposite of People, is also responsible for several
productions in past Fringe festivals in Winnipeg, Saskatoon, Edmonton
and Victoria. Recent estimates suggest he has more tattoos than the rest
of the CBC review crew combined.Joff Schmidt
is your humble
narrator. I majored in theatre at the U of M, and performed in many,
many Fringe shows along the way (ranging from terrible to pretty good).
I've been reviewing theatre for CBC Radio since 2005, and work on DNTO
(Follow me on Twitter: @JoffSchmidt)Ruth Shead
is the senior
producer for DNTO
and a producer for CBC Radio's summer series
. She's also our resident expert in musical theatre, and
will prove it by performing Newsies
in its entirety upon request.
(Follow Ruth on Twitter: @ruthlesstravels.)Kelly Stifora
writing instructor at Red River College and a graduate of the U of M's
theatre program, where he directed and performed in many, many
productions. He's apprentice directed at the Manitoba Theatre Centre,
and starred in many, many more productions at Fringe Festivals past.Jim
is a television and stage writer, as well as comedic actor and
improviser. He's a former member of the Second City National Touring
Company and, if you're really old, you might remember him from the
Winnipeg sketch comedy troupe the Spleen Jockeys. Jim's writing has
earned him several awards, including a Gemini, a Canadian Comedy Award,
and the 2012 Third Person Award. Happy Fringing!