What annoys you the most about people? When they bail on plans? Or text and drive? Whatever it is, it’s probably featured as a musical number in People Suck, the Nutmeg Creations’ hilarious musical playing at the Toronto Fringe Festival. People Suck doesn’t have a plot or storyline. It’s a collection of songs that revolve around one theme: all the ways in which people are the worst.
There were a total of 14 songs, written and composed by Megan Phillips and Peter Cavell. Each song tackled a specific reason why people suck. The cast sang about people that use bad grammar, annoying coworkers, taking stress out on loved ones, bridesmaid envy, general stupidity, and so much more.
The musical numbers had catchy melodies and included strong vocal performances from all five cast members which include Second City Mainstage alumni Ashley Comeau, Allie Price, and Connor Thompson, as well as Megan Phillips and Arthur Wright. Almost every song was side-splittingly hilarious. I say almost just because there are a couple of numbers that delved into more serious subject matter.
Some songs were a combination of social commentary and comedy. “My God” addressed the hypocrisy and violence that is sometimes triggered by extreme religious differences.
The musical genres varied. There were ballads, operas, lounge, and western-style songs. Some numbers were accompanied with simple choreographies. Regardless of the genre, the vocal performances were pitch-perfect and highly entertaining.
The cast members were charismatic and had great chemistry. The spontaneous standing ovation was proof of their talent and ability to connect with the audience. I found Connor Thompson’s portrayal of the man they call the flake particularly funny.
I loved People Suck and highly recommend it to anybody looking for a laugh at Fringe. The cynic inside me enjoyed listening to my pet peeves come to life through song – especially the one about bad grammar. I’ll have these tunes stuck in my head for days.
At the end of the day some people are just assholes, but is that really such a big deal? Watch People Suck and find out!
- People Suck is playing until July 11 at the Randolph Theatre. (736 Bathurst St)
- Tickets are $12 in advance, $10 at the door. The festival also offers a range of money-saving passes for serious Fringers.
- Tickets can be purchased online, by phone (416-966-1062), from the festival box office down Honest Ed’s Alley (581 Bloor West), or from the venue box office starting one hour before the performance. Venue sales are cash-only.
- Be advised that Fringe performances always start exactly on time, and latecomers are never admitted. Set your watch to CBC time, and arrive a few minutes early to avoid disappointment.
July 04 at 10:30 PM
July 06 at 12:45 PM
July 07 at 06:45 PM
July 08 at 10:30 PM
July 09 at 05:15 PM
July 11 at 11:00 PM
Photo of Connor Thompson, Ashley Comeau, Allison Price,
Megan Phillips, and Arthur Wright by Paul Aihoshi.