2016 Capital Fringe Review: ‘Better A Witty Fool’

This short political farce by Louis James Brenner is reminiscent of the comedy of SNL with the irreverence of South Park. Better A Witty Fool is a timely comedy reflecting the present presidential race. The playwright used Shakespearean character names for his characters, but don’t let that throw you -it has little to do with the Bard’s cast names.

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Titania, played with just the right amount of brass and self-assurance by Molly Goff, is just a cover name for another presidential candidate, initials HC. She is opposed by Bianca (Erin Gallalee) who portrays a female version of another presidential hopeful, DT.  Gallalee even wears a wig and exposes all the bombast of her male clone. The scenes between her and her campaign manager, sister Kate, played by Nora Zanger, are some of the funniest in the show.

Robert Henley does well as the smarmy and vulgar Polonius, one of Titania’s managers. Along with the rest of the cast which includes Melanie Jennings-Bales, Kelli Biggs, Gary Cramer, Emily Golden, Larry Grey, Peter Orvetti, Michael Puzan, and Cal Whitehurst, they take a hard jab at Washington politics.

Director Eddie Page choreographs all these actors around the stage with just a minimal set (just a table and at one point a mattress), and he is also responsible for the set, sound, props, and video production. The backdrops are projections with the candidate’s logos or other signs to let us know where we are. Michael Page does well with the lighting design. Susan Boyd picks just the right wigs to make the actors look more like their real life counterparts. Her costuming also helps add to the comparisons.

Don’t be foolish and catch this timely production.

Running Time: 45 minutes, with no intermission.

Better A Witty Fool plays through Sunday, July 24, 2016 at Eastman Studio Theatre in the Elstad Annex of Gallaudet University – 800 Florida Avenue, NE, in Washington, DC. For tickets call (866) 811-4111, or purchase them online.

Check other reviews and show previews on DCMetroTheaterArts’ 2016 Capital Fringe Page.



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