Tonight, or rather at 1 a.m. tomorrow (Saturday) morning, the three new hosts of the13th Hour (Kiki, Cat and Filip) will be doing their first show. For the unintiated, the 13th Hour, is an after-hours Montreal Fringe Festival Cabaret with a talk show format that allows companies following the Fringe to promote their shows, at theCabaret du Mile End.
The quirky trinity had a test run at 11 p.m. last night, as hosts of the second and lastFringe-for-All, the one that allows out-of-town guests to strut their stuff, within one-minute of air time. Just in case you missed my live-tweeting of the event here’s a link to my shoot-from-the-hip comments on the Gazette website. In fact, due to a malfunction, I’m not sure they were live on the website at the time. Also, I had aBlackberry malfunction that was not easily cured. So there was a lull at the end.
As for the event itself, I’m in favour of allowing the out-of-towners a full two minutes next year. Many of them were cut off prematurely. Also, an earlier start time might bring in a wider section of the public. To put this in perspective, the first Fringe-for-All, for locals, started at 7 p.m. at Cafe Campus. There were 93 companies, allowed two minutes each. (And some ran overtime.) It was a marathon event.
At last night’s Fringe-for-All for out-of-towners there were only 26 companies. Yet they only got one minute to perform. Where’s the justice in that? Added to that is the fact that most of them have road-tested shows, so there’s a slightly lower “lame” factor during this event.
One show that’s high on my list after last night is God is a Scottish Drag Queen. She was hilarious.
Also, back in the early days of the Fringe there were daytime shows on weekdays. Now the start time is 6 p.m. Mind you that does allow for more shopping time. This isSt. Laurent Blvd. Street Sale weekend. And I saw some great bargains on my way to the Fringe beer tent last night. This annual street sale is high on my list of reasons why I love Montreal. And yes, it’s perfectly safe to go there. The trendy terraces just above Sherbrooke St. were doing a brisk business last as the mainly harmless student demonstrators wore out their shoe leather elsewhere.
See you at the Fringe. And if you do see a good show, please post a comment here so we can all get a chance to check it out.