From the press release:
Eleven years after they first teamed up for the 2006 show Any Second Now (“Wryly and sometimes brutally funny”, Edmonton Sun), WGC Award-winner Joanne O’Sullivan (This Hour Has 22 Minutes) and Dora Award-winner Chris Earle (Radio:30) are putting the band back together for O’Sullivan’s new play, She Grew Funny. The one-woman show will run at the Factory Theatre Studio as part of Toronto Fringe.
Once again, O’Sullivan knew Earle was the only choice to direct her. Already known for wringing wry comedy from everyday life, with She Grew Funny, O’Sullivan goes deeper and darker than ever.
“This show is the sometimes hard, often funny, true story of how my life changed when my daughter turned 6, the same age I was when my own mother died,” she says. “A pivotal moment that sent me on a journey to try answer the question I see in everyone’s expression the moment they find out about my loss – “What did you become having lost your mother so young?”
Earle, who has a reputation for helming revues at The Second City with the hardest satirical bite (Sixteen Scandals, The Hotline Always Blings Twice) was a perfect fit for She Grew Funny. “Chris has a great eye for finding comedy in truth,” says O’Sullivan, “and he honours the story, rarely leading me towards the cheap laugh.” With Brett McCaig, (Waiting for Trudeau: Return of the King, and Rob Ford: The Musical) as producer, we’re all working towards that same balance of dark and funny.”
Fresh off a stint as a contributing writer for season 3 of the Baroness Von Sketch Show on CBC, O’Sullivan is looking forward to sharing her story, if only to get a chance to let everyone know she’s doing fine. “Every time I tell people my mother died when I was so young, I end up having to reassure them, like ‘I’m okay. Don’t be upset. I’m fine. Are YOU okay?’” But she’s also keen to share a story that can resonate with anyone. “Anyone who’s experienced any kind of loss will see themselves in this journey.”
And while her daughter is too young to see it, O’Sullivan says there’s a message for her in the show. “I want her to know we can come back from tragedy and even find what’s funny in a difficult situation – given enough space and time. People are resilient, we’re strong…which means she’s strong, too.”
- “She Grew Funny” plays at the Factory Theatre (125 Bathurst Street)
- Tickets are $12. The festival also offers a range of money-saving passes for serious Fringers.
- Tickets can be purchased online, by telephone (416-966-1062), from the Fringe Club at Scadding Court, and — if any remain — from the venue’s box office starting one hour before curtain.
- Be aware that Fringe performances always start exactly on time, and that latecomers are never admitted.
- Content Warnings: Unsuitable for Minors, Mature Language.
- Fri July 7, 1:15pm
- Sat July 8, 9:00pm
- Sun July 9, 1:00pm
Tues July 11, 2:45pm
- Wed July 12, 11:15pm
- Thurs July 13, 6:00pm
- Sat July 15, 7:30pm
Photo provided by company