When attending the Fringe Fest you never know what you’re gonna get. A show could be great, or it can suck so hard that you frantically google the words “Time Machine” in hopes to find some genius who has recently discovered a way for you to get the last couple hours of your life back. No one wants to pay to see a terrible show, and that’s why we read reviews!

This Sunday I went to see “Alex Cross and His Rise to Fame” at the Mainline Theatre. Upon my arrival I met the production manager, Mayumi Yoshida, a really lovely person doing a great job at promoting the show despite her seemingly little experience in theatre. During our chat she hyped the show by highlighting the key contributors educational accomplishments, such as the writers degree in Philosophy, how he graduated with honours and so on. As an artist, I wanted to roll my eyes because I know that art and academics are very different things. However I was intrigued to learn how a strong philosophical influence would affect the probably otherwise terrible writing. I later learnt that the writer, Franco Decrescentis, is so much more than just book smart.

I took my seat and read the program as I waited for the show to start. The synopsis begins, “A talentless loser’s drive to be famous leads him to naively making a deal with the devil for his soul.” Instantly I could relate to this as a musician, realizing everything we need to sacrifice for the potential to become a celebrity. The music industry is about contracts, lack of artistic control, and fictional images. The most famous musical celebrity will depict a dumbed down shell of an artist who has no real insightful opinions. The most popular “musicians” nowadays seem to be little more than glorified prostitutes.

The part of the synopsis I got really excited about was, “Follow Alex’s journey during his rise to fame until he learns the truth from a conspiracy researcher who exposes the hidden satanic agenda behind the music industry.” At first it was unclear as to whether this show was laughing at conspiracy theorists or expressing the clarity and of “conspiracies” related to the music industry. Without giving away too much, I’ll just say that I was really happy to see where it went.

The show began with some old-timey music and a captivating narration performed by Jason Yearow. Within the first 5 minutes, I realized that I was at one of the awesome Fringe shows! The show was well casted, well directed, very well written, and was funnier than many of the Montreal stand up comic sets I’ve seen lately. This show had everything from hot girls, and funny dialogue, to alternative endings, and a little person in costumes. Best of all it had a message. I’m a big fan of learning what message the artist is trying to convey.

I would recommend that everyone goes to this show not just for the entertainment value but for the informative journey that will probably show you a perspective that you never considered. This show might just blow your mind. Would I go to another show written and directed by Franco Decrescentis? Damn straight I would!!!

Alex Cross and His Rise to Fame
TUE JUNE 18TH @ 9:45 P.M.
WED JUNE 19TH @ 8:00 P.M.
THUR JUNE 20TH @ 9:15 P.M.
SAT JUNE 22ND @ 10:15 P.M.

Mainline Theatre
3997 Blvd. St. Laurent

General: $10
+ 2$ Service Charge / QDF
Members & Students: $8
+ 2$ Service Charge / QDF

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