Billed as “the most weird and original shows you’ll catch at this year’s Fringe”, The Ballad of Frank Allen certainly made that true, all without using elaborate sets, costumes, or a band.
When a scientific accident causes a mild-mannered janitor to shrink and get stuck in another man’s beard, their unlikely friendship might be exactly what the two directionless men need to set them on the path toward being better men.
Featuring the talents of Fringe favorites, Shane Adamczak and St John Cowcher, The Ballad of Frank Allen tells us a story spanning 521 days, through the point of view of bearded Al (Cowcher) who can’t seem to hold a job for long, and worker Frank Allen (Adamczak), who is able to control the Al’s actions by adapting to living in his beard – think Disney’s Ratatoullie but in a beard.
Filled with loads of humor and told in a non-linear fashion, Adamczak and Cowcher will not let you get lost with what is happening, whether they are doing their mono slash duologue, performing the funny original numbers written by Adamczak, or even if they play other minor characters. Oh, and they play their own instruments, too.
This show is certainly a fun surprise when you go without expectations. Sure, you may need to use your imagination a bit, but for the most part, The Ballad of Frank Allen is pretty straightforward entertainment not to be missed at the Fringe.
The 32nd Vancouver Fringe Festival and its other 100+ shows continues until September 18, 2015.