Coming to The Capital Fringe Festival: ‘A Day in the Life of Miss Hiccup’ by Susan Thompson Gaines

Quirky and adorable! Award-winning Japanese performer brings a solo physical non-verbal comedy show with wonderful music and sounds.

Photo by Rene Ferrer.

How to describe my story…  Wow – that is a tough question!

Obviously – my journey is a long one – I have travelled all the way from Tokyo, Japan for the Capital Fringe Festival.  So practically- my journey has consisted of very long plane rides – Japan to Orlando for the Orlando Fringe Festival – where I performed My Exploding Family with 2 other very talented Japanese clowns. We won Patron’s Pick, Best International Show, Best of Venue, were held over, and sold out almost every night!! In Florida we also got to visit what I hear is an American cultural mecca – Wal-Mart! We went in full clown costume and make-up after midnight to explore the store and were enthralled by the huge carts, aisles, and all the merchandise!  It was so cheap!  Of course we also went to Disney World – amazing!

From Orlando, we went to New York City, because what trip to America is complete without seeing the Big Apple? We busked in Central Park – where we learned a valuable NYC lesson – get a permit before busking or be prepared to pay a fine. Ouch. But we like to think of it as a lesson instead of a punishment – and the flower I got from a little girl was far more valuable than the fine we paid if you ask me! Our next stop is Montreal for their Fringe Festival. We are looking forward to the crazy Montreal nightlife and seeing loads of theatre! [Editor: My Exploding Family just won Best Production English Theatre Award at The Montreal Fringe Festival].

The piece I am doing at Capital Fringe, A Day in the Life of Miss Hiccup, is a show I am very proud of.  It is a solo clown piece and really represents my esthetic well.  Miss Hiccup is a quirky, adorable clown who can make even the most jaded audience member crack a grin.  This show has won awards across Canada.  The fun thing about the show is that it appeals to such a wide audience – little kids love it and adults do, too.  I mean – who doesn’t laugh at absurdity?  One review from Vancouver had a line that I love, “This show works for all ages including those grumpy adults who’ve forgotten how to have a good time.”  Isn’t that great?  Because it is so true – sometimes as adults we forget that just letting loose and having fun is as important as paying our rent!

This is my second official Fringe tour, but my first visit to Washington DC.  Of course, I have seen bits and pieces of the U.S. Capital in movies and in books – the big monuments, the White House, etc. But I am excited to meet the people and get a real feel for the city.  When I tour I often run around the city in full costume and make-up – I hope that won’t disturb people if I ride your metro system as Miss Hiccup!!

On a serious note, the past year has been a difficult one for my country. The disaster that struck Japan on March 11, 2011 was devastating. Not only was the actual earthquake horrible, but the aftermath that we are still dealing with and will continue to fight for years to come is both scary and overwhelming. Our lives have been forever changed.

So being able to do my show – making people smile and forget about the seriousness of life for just an hour – is a gift I can give. It is what I have to offer. A bit of relief from this crazy world!! I look forward to meeting people at the Capital Fringe Festival and bringing Miss Hiccup to you.

Photo by Masami Suzuki.

Venue: B103 – at Mount Vernon United Methodist Church – 900 Massachusetts Ave NW, in Washington, DC.

Shoshinz website.


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