Fringe is built on one man (or woman) shows. An hour where the audience attention is captivated (or not) by one person. In The Hoodwink, Albie Davis (Melanee Murray) is a performer who has got soul, but the world isn’t embracing her honest rhymes about war and social issues. They aren’t embracing her poetry about her hair weave either. The play, opens to Albie performing a poem about her hair weave, when she gets a call back for an audition. Her audition goes less then well though, mostly because she doesn’t have the right kind of hair.
From here we learn that Albie is a single mother, taking care of her son Marcus and trying to make enough money to get by. We witness a comical teaching session, where we hear about Albie’s past creations including a hip hop version of the sound of music (I would watch that!). When Pull The Trigger theatre chooses a group called Lickedy Split instead of Albie, she’s on the phone immediately to her agent. Albie’s wit doesn’t sell, and consumers want their produce shiny and unintelligent, or at least scantily clad, all in which Albie is not. If she wants to sell, her agent tells her, she has to stop trying to change the world.
So she decides to do something about it. There is a reality show called Hip Hop Survivor that Albie was turned down from, but she decides to go back and try out again, but not as Albie Davis. The world isn’t ready for Albie Davis in the way that she presents herself.
Murray plays all the characters in the play. And though this reviewer was a little confused sometimes as to whether some characters were guys or girls when they were first introduced, all eleven character were well portrayed on stage. The play has intrigue and complexity and is funny and well written. Murray does a fantastic job transitioning between characters and rapping her heart out. This is another fringe show that is well worth it.
The Hoodwink has one last show tomorrow. Purchase your ticket here.