By Catherine Wagley
By Channing Sargent
By L.A. Weekly critics
By Amanda Lewis
By Catherine Wagley
By Carol Cheh
By Keegan Hamilton
By Bill Raden
And then, that weekend, I found myself at the 11:45 p.m. performance of Adam Tinkle's solo show A Mess of Things at Fringe Central on Santa Monica Boulevard. I was the only audience member in attendance. The poor guy was opening in Hollywood for one critic. Many years from now, I'm convinced, this experience will appear in his memoirs.
He cradled a guitar. The stage was littered with sound equipment and a box near the floor that doubled as a projection screen for the image of a helixlike contraption his grandfather had invented. Most of the show was a recorded soundscape of interviews he'd conducted with his grandfather and two aunts. He accompanied some of this with guitar, sometimes with lyrics.
Grandpa had tons of stuff he'd invented, in a former era, and now he was having to downsize. Through the impressionistic snippets of interview, the performance unveiled the history of junk and disposal, an attachment to objects, but mostly just history itself on the verge of extinction.
Midnight clicked into a new day, as the projection showed a mountain stream, with origami boats floating, against the music of those voices and the guitar.
Among the show's many virtues was that rarest of qualities we seek, in the theater and in life — authenticity. A man in an undecorated room, telling his truth without fakery or deceit. How often do you find that?
Steven, if you are looking for 'authentic' be sure to catch AMERICAN ADDICT, Written & Performed by Ricky Butler. Raw. Edgy. True. So confidently delivered. Last performances at the I.O.West Theatre Friday and Saturday nights (6366 Hollywood Blvd at Cahuenga). Showtime: 8 PM.
Thanks for reviewing the Fringe Festival and featuring my son, Adam Tinkle's solo show. Hopefully your publicity will encourage much bigger audiences for his subsequent performances of "A Mess of Things." Just one correction: his interviews were with Ben, his grandfather, and his aunt & his mom (me). Great review!