Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Fringe 2010 - Fringe-For-All 2 - Unscheduled Zombie Singers On The Sidewalk

This preview wasn't even part of Fringe-For-All, officially anyway. A gathering of teenagers in zombie makeup greeted those of us exiting the Ritz after Fringe-For-All #2 last night, greeted us with postcards - and song.

Zombie High School

Late Night Menu

"The Zombie Apocalypse has come and gone, and now the undead and humans are trying desperately to coexist. A young human student, Maggie Mulligan, decides to brave all obstacles and become an exchange student at a high school for zombies in order to learn more about their culture. However, in the folly of youth, Maggie ends up biting off more than she can chew.

Local a cappella group Late Night Menu takes you on a 100% unaccompanied a cappella musical through Maggie's adventures. Their golden pipes will tickle your fancy throughout terrifying moments, delicious zombie-on-human romances, haunting throwbacks to the civil rights movement, and stunning vocal percussion from an undead principal.

This show would be perfect for the following:

-zombie-lovin' Minneapolitans

-musical theater junkies

-a cappella enthusiasts

-teenagers, young adults, parents of cast members [Blogger's note - hee]

-horror movie fanatics

-college students

-civil rights activists and historians


The Twin Cities has a huge a cappella scene, and Late Night Menu is excited to bring this type of music to the fringe festival in the form of zombies, one of Minneapolis' famed obsessions. Their overall humorous production has surprising depth through nods to relevant political, social and racial issues, characters full of heart, and song and dance that will set your heart a-flutter.

This show was written for people who can't resist a good musical, and who can't resist a good zombie play. Come one come all. Also, BRAINS!"

Zombies squick me out. I'm not entirely sure why. I'm not a big fan of horror films anyway. Blood and entrails and death don't really provide me with any thrills or catharsis. I'm more an emotional rather than physical consequences kind of guy. The sort of monsters I can handle are the TV variety - Buffy, Angel, The Vampire Diaries, Twilight (ok that's a movie), Supernatural, True Blood (though those last two are pushing my comfort envelope more than a little). I can deal with vampires and werewolves, apparently. But zombies throw me for a loop.

So why I'm currently writing a play that features a zombie, I haven't a clue. Since there isn't currently any flesh or brain-eating going on, that may be helping.

If you type "zombie" into the Search function on the Fringe website, you get not one, not two, but three hits. The high school noted above, a collection of short plays called Eat My Zombie Shorts!, and, on a tangent, Kill Will - Oh no, not more Shakespearean Zombies!

Zombie normally equals "no" in my book, automatically, without question. I'm a pussy.

But the singing of these high school zombies is really good. (There were two songs they cycled through - I forget the title of the second one but the first was an upbeat ditty called, "Welcome To The End of the World" - no really, it was bouncy.)

They're a group that's used to working together, so the musical bits I heard on the sidewalk, and in the video clips below, impressed me. Good music in a Fringe musical is always a plus.

And it makes the zombies a bit easier to take, though of course I'm sure it still all ends badly (plot-wise, I mean). The singing makes me want to give it a chance, though.

They know music, but do they know plot? I wonder about the script, (or the story, if it's all just music).

But the music is so entertaining, I almost don't care. I may give it a go regardless.

They were smart to have their little impromptu concert. It made me give them a second look.

Also worth a look, their training in a zombie workshop

The ballad Don't Lose Heart. The camerawork on both the songs has a tendency to cut off heads, which is amusing, given the subject matter...

And this one has "perky opening number" written all over it - Everything's Going To Be Great! - stay tuned at the end for rehearsal banter, and a lingering boob shot (oops)...

Their website - www.zombiehighschool.com

Their Fringe page

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