What to check out this second weekend at Fringe Festival 2019

Yassine El Mansouri

Philadelphia is a city full of culture, artistic expression and passion. Every year, FringeArts, the city’s premier establishment for contemporary performances, streamlines all of those attributes to produce a 17-day extravaganza featuring 1,000 curated and independently produced performances — the Fringe Festival. The annual event highlights the incredible talent the City of Brotherly Love exemplifies in an interactive and highly personal way. This weekend continues the spirited festival, and Metro has the scoop on which shows you should be checking out. 

“There: In the Light and the Darkness of the Self and of the Other”

This visually progressive show comes from Wilma Theater’s innovative artistic director Blanka Zizka and arts pioneer Rosa Barba, and aims to bring a seminal work of contemporary poetry to life on stage. A group of talented Philly-based actors will be performing a full-bodied interpretation of Etel Adnan’s book-length meditation on conflict and identity, and the show also explores what we all yearn to discover for ourselves and on our quest for love. “There: In the Light and the Darkness of the Self and of the Other” opened this week and also features original music by Alex Dowling. 

Through Sept. 22, times vary, Wilma Theater, 265 South Broad St., $2-$52


This unique show comes from theater director Kaneza Schaal after a trip to Germany where he heard the stories of many young refugees. Schaal worked on creating that experience into a one-of-a-kind work of art and did so by combining simple storytelling with interactive video technology where audiences shape the onstage video projections with their own cellphones. The show opened this week and will feature performers from El Salvador, Syria, Lebanon and Rwanda. 

Through Sept. 15, times vary, Christ Church Neighborhood House, 20 N. American St., $2-$35


This new play from Anna Ziegler follows a story that is all too prevalent in today’s society — the issue of consent. After two freshmen at Princeton, Amber and Tom, spend a night partying together, the lines of attraction and consent are blurred with dire consequences. According to the website, “Actually” investigates gender and race politics, our desire to fit in, and the three sides to every story.

Through Sept. 15 and Sept. 19-22, times vary, Philadelphia Ethical Society, 1906 Rittenhouse Sq., $20

“Empanada Loca”

“Empanada Loca” is the perfect show for any crime-loving thrill seeker. This inaugural production from the Recondite Tourist Activities follows the story of Dolores, who waits underground to tell her story of gentrification, survival, and murder inspired by the legend of “Sweeney Todd.” “Empanada Loca” contains graphics related to sex and violence, and may not be suitable for all audiences. 

Sept. 17-21, times vary, Panorama Philly, 5213 Grays Ave., $20


“Turf” comes from the all-female Brooklyn-based group Inclined Dance Project, and this incredible dance showcase places the audience in and around the performance space in an unconventional theater setup. According to the website, IDP aims to create work that tests the imagination of audiences. IDP also approaches dance-making through a “set and destroy” method, allowing the performers and collaborating artists the opportunity to deconstruct material and incite dialogue, exploration, and personal contribution to a work. 

Sept. 13, 8 p.m., The Maas Building, 1320 N. 5th St., $15

Artists & Makers Fair

This all-new free event is a first for Fringe Festival and will take place in the Haas Biergarten at La Peg. This festival will showcase unique works from a variety of talented artists including Catalyst Accessories, Grasslands With Out Time, Maiden Designs Studio, No. 27 collection, Lounge LizZard Designs, Laurel Tree Bindery, Cynplicity Artisan Soap Co. and many more.

Sept. 15, noon-6 p.m., FringeArts, 140 N. Columbus Blvd., free 


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