The San Francisco Fringe Festival turns 21 on Sept. 5, entering that dangerous territory between being young enough to let its passions show and too old to be cool. But for the 12 days of that exuberant theater celebration, there will be no hipper or fun place to be.
With over 250 performances of 42 new shows, the Fringe Festival is produced at the Exit Theatreplex on Eddy. That is when it’s not romping about at other weird and wonderful venues, like the 50 Mason Social House, where a blues musical called Tyrone “Shortleg” Johnson and Some White Boys will be presented. My personal fave? An improvisation called Sugar High: A Brechtian b*tch slap that will take its audience on a bus ride through
Other Fringe offerings: “a simple love story” entitled Jesus Do You Love Me? Please Mark Yes or No; Legacy of the Tiger Mother, a musical about old-fashioned Chinese parenting in modern America; and Calling America: Don’t Hang Up, a political punk-rock comedy. One particularly intriguing title is The Revolution Will Not Be Circumcised, by Glen Callender, creator of the Foreskin Awareness Booth, which I admit is a new one on me, but then, I am way past 21. However, I intend to youthen and get educated, and will start by going to as many of the Fringe events I can get tickets for.
2012 San Francisco Fringe Festival: various locations, Sept. 5–16, tickets $10 or less at the door, $12.99 online, 10-show pass $75, 5-show pass $40; 415-673-3847, www.sffringe.org
— E. Baron