Lipstique (produced by Mix Mix Collective) really “piqued” my interest when I came across it on the Fringe listings. I saw a picture of possibly the most interesting gang of dancers I’ve ever seen. I just knew I had to check it out at this year’s Toronto Fringe Festival.
At first I was a little afraid that Lipstique was going to be one of those contemporary dance shows about some really obscure story that I wouldn’t be able to understand, but after about 5 minutes in, I was proven wrong. It ended up being this awesome variety hour of millennial angst touching on everything from gender identity to YouTube makeup tutorials to Donald Trump. I could definitely understand this language.
I’ll just start off by saying that the troupe as a whole killed it, however; there were two special snowflakes who really stood out to me. Jasmyn Fyffe’s stage presence was in a word: infectious and Sze-Yang Ade-Lam impressed with aerial tricks and splits (while wearing 3-inch heels). Oof, git it!
The choreography was expertly done and the music did not go to waste which was great to see. The dancers seamlessly transitioned between Gaga-esque contemporary technique and hard-hitting hip hop dance styles which created something new altogether. I was especially impressed with the number in which the dancers gyrate to the words “f*ck Donald Trump”. How bad-ass is that!? I thought, “this is the kind of dance show I can get behind”.
Although the dancing itself really delivered, there were times when I was wishing for a bit more emotion and energy from the group. While certain dancers emoted with their faces, others had a bit of a “bored” look putting a bit of a damper on the energy overall. Maybe there was a secret “smize” that I just couldn’t see? Nevertheless, where stage presence lacked, was awesome choreography, bold moves and smart storytelling.
Lipstique is not your run-of-the-mill contemporary dance piece. It’s fresh, modern and super relevant to our current social climate. If you wanna be where all the cool kids are, buy a ticket for Lipstique and see some booty-poppin’ with a real purpose.
- Lipstique plays at the Randolph Theatre. (736 Bathurst St)
- 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: Not recommended for persons under 14 years of age, sexual content, mature language, fog mist of haze effects and strobe lights.
- This venue is accessible.
- Wednesday July 5th, 08:15 pm
- Saturday July 8th, 05:45 pm
- Monday July 10th, 12:45 pm
- Wednesday July 12th, 08:45 pm
- Thursday July 13th, 03:30pm
- Friday July 14th, 02:15pm
- Saturday July 15th, 11:30 pm
Photo of Emily Law, Ashley Perez, Jasmyn Fyffe, Kristine Flores, Sze-Yang Ade-Lam, Jelani Ade-Lam, Sarah Tumaliuan by Francesca Chudnoff.