Jennifer Blaine, Philadelphia’s acclaimed solo performer, “whose comic genius is like Lily Tomlin and Tracey Ullman,” (Philadelphia Daily News) and Karen Getz whose direction has been called “truly a transcendent experience” (City Paper) will present the world premiere of the one-woman work, The Vicissitudes of Travel, as part of the 2017 Fringe Festival presented by FringeArts.
Jennifer is a Philadelphia Fringe Festival favorite, creating original works for 14 previous festivals—including, most recently, a sold-out run of her show Dirty Joke in 2013. Jennifer collaborated on her new show The Vicissitudes of Travel with Barrymore award winning Philadelphia theater artist Karen Getz, who served as director and co-writer. Getz is known to Live Arts and Fringe audiences for her comic-actor’s ballets: Suburban Love Songs (2006) and Disco Descending (2008) and as an improvisor with Cecily and Gwendolyn’s Fantastical… and Lunch Lady Doris. Jennifer and Karen have been working on The Vicissitudes of Travel over the past two years and have been awarded a Jilline Ringle Solo Residency @ 1812 Productions, to further develop the piece, this July.
WHEN: September 10 at 3 p.m.; Sept. 16 at 7:30 p.m.; Sept. 22 at 7:30 p.m. & at 10 p.m.
WHERE: Philadelphia Ethical Society, 1906 Rittenhouse Square, Philadelphia, PA
TICKETS: $20. For info and tickets, please visit www.jenniferblaine.com
SHOW DESCRIPTION: The Vicissitudes of Travel is a multi-character solo performance and gently interactive adventure through memory, time, art, and the bonds of family. Desperate to hold onto the brother she loves, “Sister” charters a guided tour bus through his brain surgery to ‘capture” him before it’s too late. The audience is invited to join in on an evocative journey through tangled neurons, misplaced memories and imagined artistic masterpieces as “Sister” tries to find and hold on to the ephemeral ties of love that bind us all.
Jennifer Blaine plays multiple characters to bring the journey to life, including Sister, Mother, Father, Child, Uncle, Guide, Brain Tumor, and Brother, himself. Getz marvels “I think Jennifer might be some sort of hysterically funny, benevolent alien. That’s just my deeply scientific theory- but it is astonishing to watch her seamlessly morph from one, disparate character to the next.”
According to Jennifer, “This new show is about traveling through memories, personalities, and perceptions, and exploring how we define ourselves based on our relationships with whomever we love. When someone close to us has a compromised brain or any issue where their personality changes, our universe shifts- so much can feel tenuous. This show explores what it’s like to go beyond personalities to reach the person. It is emotionally the most intimate work I have ever created, and probably my most dramatic solo show to date.”
After the performance, attendees are invited to hang out and “gently decompress” and connect, exploring their own journeys through unpressured art making and informal conversation. Getz underscores the critical value of this post-performance period; “I am continually, happily surprised by how the piece acts as an individualized catalyst- allowing audiences to see their own journeys with loved ones who have moved beyond or away from their original selves.” The Vicissitudes of Travel is an instant-community event, intended to nurture our ability to
communicate, connect, and share experiences related to illness, mortality, family, memory and loss. It does NOT aim to be heavy. Just human.
ABOUT JENNIFER BLAINE
Jennifer Blaine has been performing one-woman multi-character shows for 22 years. Her original writing, performing, and comedy connect audiences through humor, socially relevant issues, and dialogue. She has performed with the likes of Chris Rock, George Carlin, and Joe Piscopo, and been featured at premier venues and festivals nationwide. Highlights include: Broadway, The Kimmel Center, The Annenberg Center for the Arts, The Open Stage of Harrisburg, Wesleyan University, and The Samuel Beckett Theatre on Theatre Row. She is the resident theater artist and playwright of the Showstoppers program at the Kimmel Center, which provides free musical theatre classes and mentorship for Philadelphia high school students. She is the founder and producer for 5,000 Women which supports and launches original work of women performance artists. For more information, visit www.jenniferblaine.com.
ABOUT KAREN GETZ
Karen Getz is a Philadelphia-based theater maker: a writer, choreographer, director, actor, dancer, and creative collaborator. She is the recipient of two Philadelphia Theatre Initiative Grants and an Independence Foundation Fellowship in support of her original, comic-actor’s ballets. She has received three Barrymore Awards for Excellence in Theater. Karen is the co-guide and co-creator of The Gorgeousity, an ongoing mission to bring playfully immersive, original works of theater to gathered strangers in casual environments, to create instant communities and remind adults of the joy, power, and spiritual necessity of imagination and play. Based in Philadelphia, she’s worked with Azuka Theatre, Virginia Rep, University of the Arts, Bristol Riverside Theatre, Pig Iron, The Lantern Theater, The Philadelphia Shakespeare Festival, Act II Playhouse, Flashpoint Theater, Theater Ariel, 1812 Productions, SwimPony and Tapestry Theater. She previously worked in Los Angeles for almost a decade, appearing in over 20 major films and television shows. You can watch her dance and chew a lot of gum in the film Dirty Dancing.