Last year Sam Mullins came through the Calgary Fringe Festival with Tinfoil Dinosaur and it got rave reviews. So I came to see it in Edmonton. Sam is back this year with his new one man play, Weaksauce. Its a story about his first love. The play opens to Sam, on stage with some lighting, and he says ‘hey’. It’s not a critical part of the play, but it expresses how the play is going to go. Sam is a storyteller, and he’s going to tell the audience a story. He opens to a mind numbingly embarrassing moment in his life, when he was trying to impress the girls and it didn’t work out as planned. It’s a truly vulnerable place to be in for Sam and it allows for the audience to trust him and open up to what he has to say. The narrative then takes us to University of Guelph, where Sam was a camp councilor for a summer. He meets his first love here.
Weaksauce isn’t a story that is groundbreaking. But Mullins has a great ability as a storyteller, and weaves humor and heart into his tale. His descriptions of saying ‘I love you’ for the first time are bang on and his portrayal of his enemy, the British David Oliver is performed very well. He doesn’t break his accent, and blend characters and emotion and vulnerability together to tell us a moving story. There aren’t flashing lights or gimmicks to take away from one guy, with a story to tell.
Weaksauce is part of the Edmonton Fringe Festival. It plays 7 more times in the festival. More information is available online.
Photo credit: Alex Waber