[ZED.TO] ByoLogyc: Where You Become New (The Mission Business) 2012 Toronto Fringe Review

Welcome to ByoLogyc – where you become new! ByoLogyc is an innovative Toronto-based pharmaceutical company aimed at improving all aspects of your life using the future age of technology, science and research. You are cordially invited to take part in their VIP (Versatile Intern Program) and be part of the unveiling party located at the Annex Wreckroom during Toronto Fringe for ByoLogyc’s latest product release – ByoRenew

To begin with, let’s get one thing clear – ByoLogyc is a fictional pharmaceutical company. You’re not quite sure when you enter, but that’s part of the fun. From simply standing in line to enter, the fact that this is a highly interactive experience that will bend your sense of reality becomes very apparent.

You start by being handed a name tag followed by a card with a Toronto-based number to call before heading inside to learn about the procedure. When you enter, you’re assigned to one of the various corporate teams – I was sent to Research and Development, but you eventually make your way to a few different sections. This means that no two experiences at this performance will be entirely the same.

You then meet the different members of the ByoLogyc staff learn more about the company, and you also have the opportunity to try one of ByoLogyc’s existing products. I suggest trying ByoBreath, a breath freshener that also allows you to breathe in more oxygen with every inhale.

The departmental mingling is interrupted by CEO Chet Getram to get all involved in a team building exercise – the marshmallow tower. We went back to our respective groups and proceeded to make a tower using spaghetti sticks, string, and tape to raise a single marshmallow as high as we could on our freestanding tower. My team didn’t win.

The apex of the night came with the unveiling of the ByoRenew pill, one that is supposed to strengthen your immune system to repel most common viruses, and we were all given one to take. So bottoms up! (It’s just an empty pill casing, I checked.) And that’s when the siren came on…

ByoLogyc is not a play, it’s an experience. It takes viral marketing and interactive sharing to a whole other level. From the introductory phone call and the separate info line you’re encouraged to call to the hands on experience inside the event. From the need to think fast and speak up when asked to progress the experience to signing up online for the VIP program and speaking to the characters over Twitter and on the forums.

Your experience grows the more you interact. You are not bored when you participate. You are a vital and integral part of the show. The fourth wall does not end in front of you, it extends and ends behind you so it is up to you as an attendee not to break that experience.

ByoLogyc is part of the ZED.TO project put on by The Mission Business, a Toronto adventure company that blends in person and online experiences to engage the audience in ways that extends far beyond the end of the show. With the shocking and unexpected ending of this Fringe performance, I am thrilled to learn that Byologyc is merely one stage of many.

Details

  • [ZED.TO] ByoLogyc: Where You Become New plays at venue 15 The Annex Wreckroom (794 Bathurst Street).
  • Show times are July 9-15 at 7:30 pm.
  • All individual Fringe tickets are $10 at the door (cash only). Tickets are available online at www.fringetoronto.com, by phone at 416-966-1062, in person at The Randolph Centre for the Arts, 736 Bathurst Street (Advance tickets are $11 – $9+$2 service charge)
  • Value packs are available if you plan to see at least 5 shows.

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