Tribe of Fools to Bring TWO STREET to 2014 Philadelphia Fringe Festival, 9/4-13
Fringe Festival regulars, Tribe of Fools (TOF), will mount a brand new show, Two Street, a gay Romeo and Juliet-esque take on romantic-comedies set in a Mummers Club House at the 2014 Philadelphia Fringe Festival, presented by Fringe Arts. The show runs September 4 through 13th at the Church of the Crucifixion, 620 S 8th St., between South and Bainbridge, performance times vary. Tickets cost $20 and are available online at www.fringearts.com
Two Street is the third play in a series of Philadelphia specific original Fringe plays created by TOF. Previously, the gang from TOF tackled sexuality and identity with their smash hit, Heavy Metal Dance Fag, and violence with last summer's daring parkour spectacular, Antihero. This summer, TOF will tackle their most sensitive issue yet: Love. Two Street will borrow, reinvent and destroy the rules of romantic comedies in this physical and uproarious new production.
Two Street is directed by TOF Artistic Director Terry Brennan and choreographed by Tim Popp. The romantic leads Ronnie and Jules and played by Zachary Chiero and Peter Andrew Danzig respectively. Jules' brother and dance partner, Ty will be played by Peter Smith. Marcy, Ronnie's foul mouthed, sex pot sister, will be played by Isa St. Clair. Karina Balfour completes the ensemble playing a stressed out costumer who has New Year's Day looming ahead of her. The show was written by Terry Brennan, Nick Mazzuca and Peter Smith. Set and Props design will be handled by Christopher Haig, Costumes by Becca Austin, Sound by Kyle Yackoski and lighting design by Tim Martin.
When two rival mummers brigades are forced to share same club house, tensions are bound to be high. But when Ronnie and Jules, two natural born enemies, develop romantic feelings for each other, parties on Two Street may never be the same.
With Two Street, Brennan and TOF are exploring the fine line between the reality of normal romantic relationships and the narratives presented to us through films. "Popular entertainment has built us a one-size fits all relationship model and many of us have bought into it without even knowing it," says Brennan. "That's why I wanted to create Two Street. I wanted to tweak that one-size fits all model and make fun of it, dissect it and really examine what it says about us as a culture."
The first step to breaking down that familiar rom com narrative for the gang at TOF was casting two men as the romantic leads. However, instead of using this as a gimmick or novelty, the queer take on the classic love story is incidental. "While we still have a long way to go, as a society we're becoming more and more tolerant. I feel like a natural next step in that is writing love stories that happen to have gay characters instead of love stories about the fact that the characters are gay." Treating a queer narrative with absolute normalcy while placing the story around the mummers, a historically intolerant community, will create the necessary tension and comment on the dissonance between traditional South Philly and it's ever-changing social environment.