Here You Are (East Meets West Productions) 2011 Toronto Fringe Review

People often leave a place in order to “discover themselves,” but what happens when they finally come back? That’s the question behind Here You Are, playing at the Helen Gardiner Phelan Playhouse.

A group of four friends have their lives thrown into chaos when Sara (Jennifer Hallihan) returns to town. She broke Danny’s (Adrian Proszowski) heart when she left, and now threatens his new relationship with Aleshia (Kiki Moritsugu).

She’s also crashing with Maggie (Alisha Stranges) and John (Ryan G. Hinds), placing strain on a relationship that’s already in trouble. Sara went to Europe to find herself, but what she finds is that she’s even more screwed up now than before.

I enjoyed this show a lot. Every year, the Fringe has about a dozen shows about twenty-somethings navigating love. I think this one stands a bit above the rest of the pack due to the strength of Natalia Goodwin’s script.

There are a lot of layers in this story, and although Sara is the lead, each of the characters has their moment to reveal something of their story. Director Cole J. Alvis also made good use of the theatre space. (I enjoy when actors come out into the house… just as long as there’s no audience participation!)

I did wish a little more time was spent with Maggie and John’s story, if only because I’m a fan of Ryan G. Hinds. It was very much secondary to the Sara-Danny-Aleshia triangle. But with a 90-minute run time, there might not have been time for them.

 

Details: 

Here You Are is playing at the Helen Gardiner Phelan Playhouse, 79A St. George Street, Toronto

Showtime: 90 min.

Mon, July 11 6:45 PM 829
Tue, July
12 12:45 PM 832
Thu, July 14
2:00 PM 846
Sat, July 16
8:45 PM 864
Sun, July 17
1:45 PM 867

Individual Fringe tickets are available at the door for $10 ($5 for FringeKids), cash only.
– Latecomers will not be permitted.
– Tickets are also available online at fringetoronto.com, by phone at 416-966-1062 or in person at The Fringe Tent (behind Honest Ed’s). Advance tickets are $11 – $10 + $1 convenience fee.
– Money saving passes are available if you plan to see at least 5 shows.

 

Photo of cast (L to R): Kiki Moritsugu, Alisha Stranges, Adrian Proszowski, Jennifer Hallihan and Ryan G. Hinds.