Reviews - Fringe 2008

Fringe Festival Review: New Talent

By Ryan McGreal
Published August 22, 2008

The emotionally harrowing tale of a young woman driven by circumstance into the escort business, New Talent is simply a tremendous performance.

Interweaving a personal tragedy with a public disaster, this play, written and directed by Brian Morton, packed Venue 1 with a breathless audience.

Perhaps most remarkable, all three of its characters are sympathetic: the nervous, insecure escort (Caroline Concordia), the needy, socially maladapted john (Brad Young), and even the slick but earnest manager (Ian Rayburn), who after all recognizes the business sense in protecting his 'girls'.

The play is graphic at times but always tasteful; look elsewhere for salacious thrills. Christine is as beautiful as she is vulnerable, but her exchange (so to speak) with the john is far too awkward and cringeworthy to be lewd.

Yet it is in their clumsy fencing that we discover their humanity - their pain, their emptiness, their burning desire for something real.

This is simply a must-see performance.

Ryan McGreal, the editor of Raise the Hammer, lives in Hamilton with his family and works as a programmer, writer and consultant. Ryan volunteers with Hamilton Light Rail, a citizen group dedicated to bringing light rail transit to Hamilton. Ryan writes a city affairs column in Hamilton Magazine, and several of his articles have been published in the Hamilton Spectator. He also maintains a personal website and has been known to post passing thoughts on Twitter @RyanMcGreal. Recently, he took the plunge and finally joined Facebook.

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By Carrick (anonymous) | Posted August 25, 2008 at 09:53:41

Agreed - fantastic play! I came out with chills running down my spine. I thought the pimp was a little smarmy, but I guess pimps ARE a little smarmy so maybe that was OK.

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By chris.shaver (anonymous) | Posted September 04, 2008 at 20:35:13

Definitely one of the top five or the twenty-one fringe plays i saw that week - Low Lifes, Camoflage, I Am NOT Neil Young, and Because I Can were also excellent... Can you guess which one was the Most Disappointing?

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