BWW Review: 52 PICKUP at Capital Fringe
In order to pull off a successful solo show there are a few things you absolutely need to have.
The first is material that will hold your audience. In the case of Katie Nixon's autobiographical 52 Pickup her story is definitely one that might grab you. The story of a high school romance gone horribly wrong is told through song (co-written with Alex Shallenberger), interpretive dance and conversations with pre-recorded voices. Nixon's mother could never understand why she broke up with her boyfriend and is still friend's with his family who are very well to do. It took seven years for Nixon for fully break free from the boyfriend's manipulation, phone stalking and head games.
There is one section where Nixon calls two audience members up to watch Disney's Pocahontas while her ex keeps constantly texting and calling. It's uncomfortable as all hell.
The second item is more of a problem with this show, at least for me. With any solo show the performer needs to be as engaging as the material. Unfortunately Katie Nixon did not impress me on this front. This is not to say that she isn't talented as a writer/musician but maybe if there was a director attached to her project (the program doesn't list one) I might have been moved by her story more than I ultimately was.
52 Pickup refers to a card game in which the cards are scattered everywhere. It's a metaphor for what happened to Nixon and how ultimately she regained control of her life after a very bad experience. Her story is one that should be seen and heard. With a stronger performance what is now just interesting and engaging could be totally riveting.
Running Time: 60 minutes with no intermission.
52 Pickup performs at Spider- Saint Augustine's Episcopal Church for one more performance on July 27, 2019. The venue is located at 555 Water St in Washington, DC. For tickets, click here.