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Five Capital Fringe shows opening today that no one has seen yet but from which we expect excellence nonetheless. Satisfaction not guaranteed.
Balloon Plays (Fort Fringe: The Shop, 12:45 p.m.) — Cronyism? We’re not above it. This kids’ show was written by Brett Steven Abelman, one of the most prolific members of the Fringeworthy Action News & Commentary Squad and a guy whose whimsical sensibility makes him just the sort of dramatist who can touch the imaginations of children and their chaperones alike. Cirque de Soleil veteran Elena Day directed the piece, which features Nora F. Achrati, Rachel Hynes, and Kolleen Kintz as a trio of clowns who wake up in a world where balloons “fill the stage and become puppets, scenery, musical instruments, games, and more!” At least consider the possibility that not all clowns are terrifying.
Waiting for Armageddon (Atlas Performing Arts Center: Lab II, 1 p.m.) — Writer/lyricist Ron Litman and composer Tom Pile have been collaborating for four decades. Their DC Trash, about Litman’s experiences growing up in DC in the 1960s, was one of the breakout hits of the 2012 festival, and last year’s Fish Outta Water mined Litman’s attempt to fit in in Wisconsin, where he moved after his 2003 divorce to be closer to his children, for humor and pathos. Litman, talked about his trouble adjusting to the Midwest on a 2012 episode of the Fringe & PurgeCast; listen to that here. For a city mouse like Litman that move must’ve felt like the world was ending. In his third original Capital Fringe musical (and his sixth with Pile overall), it really is.
Miss Emma’s Matchmaking Agency for Literary Characters (Atlas Performing Arts Center: Lang, 2 p.m.) — Washington Post humorist Alexandra Petri is even funnier and sharper as a playwright than she is when she’s on the hook for two or three blog posts every day. In addition the upcoming The Campsite Rule, the hilarious and insightful sex comedy starring our own Rachel Manteuffel, opening July 26 did we mention?, Petri wrote Tragedy Averted, about Shakespeare’s tragic heroines spending the summer together at camp. She discussed that work on the Fringe & PurgeCast last year. Her new play seems to have a similar premise, but Petri has more than earned the benefit of the doubt. Funny is funny.
Dracula: A Love Story (Mountain, 3:45 p.m.) — Tim Treanor of DC Theatre Scene wrote the script for this DC-set spin on Bram Stoker‘s lovesick, undead bloodsucker. We are curious (yellow), which means we might need a blood transfusion. But we are curious.
Giant Box of Porn (Warehouse, 5:15 p.m.) — Titles matter.
Don’t like any of our suggestions? There are 64 other Fringe shows happening today. If you see one, tweet us @fringeworthy to let us know what you thought.
PHOTO: Ron Litman in full Gen. Jack D. Ripper regalia, from Waiting for Armageddon.