It’s spring time in Montreal, baby, and you know exactly what that means. Festival season is looming upon us. For this we must prepare.
We can’t go into festival season without doing a little research first. This is why, last night, I joined my dear friend and fellow mobster, Boss De Bortoli. She had seen a play by Team Greco last summer during Fringe, and nearly busted gut. It was brutal. I won’t get into the details of that, but I assure you, fellow fans of laughter and all things hilarity, Team Greco needs to be on your list of producers to check out.
An Evening with Team Greco was presented as a restaurant experience. Our waitress (and hostess/MC) was a perpetually bored sarcastic lady named Tilly (played by Stephanie McKenna) who really didn’t seem to give a single hoot and couldn’t get me to stop laughing. She reluctantly welcomed the audience and apathetically guided us through the first and second entrées and then main course, of which she was also apart of.
First up, we had the horrifyingly hilarious “Sexpectations”, a preview of Maxine Segalowitz’s upcoming show at the St. Ambroise Montreal FRINGE Festival. Picture a petite clown over expressively mouthing along to a recording that I’m pretty sure made no sense (Editors note: Eartha Kitt’s “I want to be evil” is the initial recording and the accompanied performance by Segalowitz is a riot!- Boss De Bortoli). It’s one of those cringy “WTF did I just witness?” moments and it’s very intense and lasts a good 10 minutes and leaves you wondering if that tear is from suppressed laughter or the memory of your disastrous 5th birthday party.
Next on the menu, entrée numéro deux, was an audience inclusive improv bit titled “Project Description”, in which a grant was being written by Holly Greco and Patrick Lloyd Brennan with the help of the audience à la word blank suggestions. It was then acted out in an expressive, interpretive dance by two young gentlemen who were seemingly picked from the crowd (They’re not, the artists are announced on Team Greco’s Facebook page in advance each day, so don’t worry people who don’t like when the spotlight turns on you in the audience.- Boss De Bortoli) . Just as the word blank changes every night, so do the interpreters, so keep your eyes peeled for who shall dance for the grant next!
Finally, after having been appeased and satisfied for just the right amount of time, the main course, or shall I say, the climax, begins. Maxine Segalowitz and Holly Greco keep it real in “is this pretentious” as two old art school friends catching up over drinks. I found their portrayal of the passive aggressive competition that occurs between former friends, classmates, or colleagues, totally refreshing and reassuring. Greco’s character is all huffed up on how awesome she is doing, with all her projects and grants etc. while Segalowitz’s is a little shy to share about her current project, as it is her only one and has been in the works for a while. However, Segalowitz’s project has evidently a lot more heart and soul in it. The two wade through their back handed competition until a full on war breaks out and the truth bombs fly. Honestly, just for the characters themselves and the acting I would recommend this play. Its realness and relatable content just make it all that more enjoyable.
Spectacular job ladies and gents! I look forward to seeing more from Team Greco very soon. Check them out for yourself April 22 and 23, 8PM at Galerie Mainline Gallery. Tickets available on the Mainline website or at the door $15 regular and $10 for students/seniors/QDF members. Enjoy!
lead photo courtesy of Team Greco, photographer: Joseph St. Marie