Fringe Review: Magical Mystery Detour
Sandra (Gemma Wilcox) is knee-deep in composing a new advertising slogan for marmite (the malodorous yeast goo Brits eat on toast) and has barely recovered from her mother's death and boyfriend's dumping, when an unexpected road trip rips her out of her rut, forcing her to face the futility of following other people's maps, metaphorically speaking. Luckily, she's got a raft of anthropomorphized companion — including her stolid Scottish car, her hyperkinetic dog, and an obnoxious insect (who leads an audience participatory shit-eating session) to make up for her awful sense of direction, which misleads her into Juibillie traffic jams and Druidic energy vortexes.
I first fell in love with Wilcox in 2007 seeing her one-woman show The Honeymoon Period Is Officially Over, which her latest work Magical Mystery Detour is a semi-sequel to. Wilcox is still a master of physical mimicry and specific, dancer-like movement as she inhabits characters animal, inanimate, and even imaginary (all praise the Genie of the Netipot!). This script (co-developed and directed by Elizabeth Baron) could use a little tightening, as it almost ran into overtime on opening night, and though most of the automotively-inspired soundtrack is well-selected, if I never hear “Who Let the Dogs Out?” again it will be too soon. At a Fringe full of autobiographical soloists, it's great to see an original work of one-woman fiction, so count me happy to follow the mystical map Wilcox is charting.
Magical Mystery Detour
Gemma Wilcox (London, UK)
Warnings: adult language
Run Time: 60 minutes
Genre: Comedy, Drama, Solo-show
Sat, May 18 2013, 2:45p.m. – 3:45p.m.
Sun, May 19 2013, 11:00a.m. – 12:00p.m.
Tue, May 21 2013, 5:30p.m. – 6:30p.m.
Thu, May 23 2013, 7:30p.m. – 8:30p.m.
Sat, May 25 2013, 4:20p.m. – 5:20p.m.
Sun, May 26 2013, 5:00p.m. – 6:00p.m.