2017 Philadelphia Fringe Festival Review: ‘Alchemist’ at One Shot Coffee

Friendship finds its way to the Fringe by way of Mary Tuomanen and Chris Davis in the form of a felicitous commemorative play, and is heartily welcomed! Mary and Chris have been friends for around 16 years and playfully share some of their collective memories – bitter, sweet or kooky – through lively narrative, innovative reenactment, and a creative catalog of amity artifacts. Portraying pivotal moments and stages, including one memorable snowstorm, during their relationship, the actors provide a refreshing, and valuable, view on the positively transformative affects of this special solidarity.

Mary Tuomanen and Chris Davis. Photo courtesy FringeArts.
Mary Tuomanen and Chris Davis. Photo courtesy FringeArts.

Over the years, seas and seasons, Chris and Mary continue to connect as technology progresses via email, chat, cellphone upgrades and Skype, depicted wonderfully with clever use of simple props, physicality and movement. Time and place are transcended as the tale, relayed in an invitingly intimate coffee house setting, reveals individual experiences as well and renders a glimpse of what it is, on various levels, to struggle as an artist.

Alchemist is a lovely, inspiring story with a happy ending that looks like it is not over yet. May the magical phenomenon known as friendship stay with you, Mary and Chris!

Running Time: Approximately 50 minutes, without intermission.

Alchemist plays through plays through Sunday, September 24, 2017, at One Shot Coffee – 217 W. George Street, in Philadelphia, PA. For tickets, call the Fringe box office at (215) 413-1318, or purchase them online.


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