I went to opening night of One In A Million (a micromusical) at the Randolph Theatre at Toronto Fringe Festival. The show is billed as a comedy but I am deep in the throes of a philosophical quandary as I write this.
We struggle a great deal as human beings. We feel joy and pain, anxiety and neuroses, love and lust. Imagine how much more stressful the life span of a single sex cell is?
One In A Million (a micromusical), written by Ron Fromstein and directed by Steve Morel, is the story of conception told from the perspective of some very earnest sperm cells and a very eager and impatient ovum, the Great ‘She’, and her ovaries-in-waiting.
The costumes are simple yet effective. The sperm are dressed in white tank tops, black pants and military boots and are equipped with WWI-era white helmets. The ovaries wear matching sweaters in shades of red and the ovum is dressed in white. The Fallopian gatekeepers are dressed in construction hats and reflective vests and hold STOP and SLOW signs to direct the flow of reproductive traffic.
One In A Million (a micromusical) touches on themes of competition and jealousy, brotherhood and sisterhood, sacrifice and existentialism. The sperm cells initially work in a troupe and sing to each other, “I’m your pal, I’m your brother. I’ve got your tail if you’ve got mine.”
The ladies sing a little more selfishly, “Ain’t there just one for me?”
One cell vanishes into oblivion, tugging at the heartstrings with his reprise of “Alone”.
It was difficult for my seatmate and me to hear the song lyrics off the top of the show. It could be because we placed ourselves strategically at the back of the theatre close to the tech perch. It could also be because the performers were not mic-ed, thank goodness. I’d rather miss a few lines than be bombarded with feedback.
The house was close to full, attributable to the fact that the names in the production are such a huge draw. Steve Morel directed the original Fringe production of The Drowsy Chaperone. Ron Fromstein is no stranger to the Fringe circuit, either, with works including The Big Smoke, Just Us, and Dianne & Me.
Personally, I have been a huge fan of David Lopez since the mid-90s and I’ve been equally fond of Aurora Browne from the early oughts.
Overall, One In A Million reminds us how fragile and precarious life can be and that because we made it, we are all one in a million.
- One In A Million (a micromusical) plays at Randolph Theatre (736 Bathurst Street)
- Showtimes: Sat July 07 01:45 PM, Sun July 08 10:30 PM, Tues July 10 03:15 PM, Thurs July 12 07:30 PM, Fri July 13 03:30 PM, Sun July 15 12:00 PM
- All individual Fringe tickets are $10 at the door (cash only). Tickets are also available online at www.fringetoronto.com, by phone at 416-966-1062, or 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