Review: Sky Candy's AGENT ANDROMEDA: THE ORION CRUSADE Dazzles at Daring Heights in East Austin

By: Sep. 19, 2016
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Sky Candy presents AGENT ANDROMEDA: THE ORION CRUSADE, this show is a fantastic out of this world experience currently blasting off at Sky Candy aerial and circus studio in East Austin. Written by Reina Hardy, this vaudevillian style show delights while adding cheeky commentary reminiscent of The Rocky Horror Picture Show set in space. Setting the premise with three young girls enjoying a girl power comic, Agent Andromeda, the show rises into space with a sex positive, racy adventure to find "The Overflowing Chalice". Heightening this sexy adventure, director Rudy Ramirez appropriately uses the actors bodies as props in aerial segments that are pure amazement. This aspect of the show takes off with the entry of The Dark Queen (played by Shannon Grounds), who through her folly of racing Agent Andromeda (played by Caroline Poe) to the overflowing chalice, thoroughly and hysterically abuses her comrades. Love triangles are introduced, sexualities defined and simultaneously questioned.

The audience drawing aspect of this show is the fact that no where else in Austin can you see this type of theatre. Originally written and executed, the actors are given room to play and utilize their individual talents. This adds to the vaudevillian style of the show with the actors special talents. Scenes include a saxophone playing Elvis inspired sex maniac (played by Chris Humphrey), a flag twirling Commodore (played by Micah Gause), and a belting narrator named Big Bang Betty (played by Jennifer Coy). These character along with the circus style acrobatics, highlight the spontaneity in this show and the ensemble inspired theatre. The acts are literally high on the air, using the whole room in addition to the whole stage. Staging is key in a multi level production, and set designer Ia Ensteriä creates a sparkling, eerie stage other worldly that compliments the action unfolding.

The first few stunts make the audience hold their breath, but as the play continues, the confident aerialists put the audience at ease with their technical execution and precision. This ensemble driven piece of theatre is inspiring with its creative challenges of space battles and relative commentary on sexuality do not disappoint. Agent Leda (played by Jackie Stone) and Agent Cygna (played by Amanda Clifton) question the idea of friendship and the gray line between attraction and support. Their relationship and attraction adds an element of sweetness and innocence to the show, necessary to show the inquisitive nature of a young woman's sexuality and self exploration. Stone and Clifton show the heart and excitement relatable to the beginning of romantic relationships and the questions the audience can relate to having asked themselves.

The dynamic duo that drives the plot and command the stage are Agent Andromeda (Carolin Poe) and her kind of ex lover/friend The Dark Queen (Shannon Grounds). Poe and Grounds command the stage hysterically with their unrelenting commitment and comedy toggling between sensuality and strength. The Dark Thruster (played by Andy Agne) adds an element of love from Andromeda and manipulation from The Dark Queen. He was, shall we say, the whole package in this performance. His introduction added the element of male sexuality and phallic humor needed for the show.

Sky Candys production Agent Andromeda does not disappoint with its circus inspired acts and provocative story line. This shows comes highly recommended, this fantastically sexy show will have the audience laughing and leave on lookers with an appreciation for local innovative and provocative theatre challenging the binary spectrum.

Agent Andromeda: The Orion Crusade
by Sky Candy

Sep. 09 - Sep. 24

Photo Credit: Dave Idemoto


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