2012 Toronto Fringe Festival: A Funeral For Clowns

Tears of a clown: Zanni Arte Productions’ funeral will make you laugh, cry and celebrate living

Written by Vincenzo Aliberti
Directed by Teodoro Dragonieri

Visitors are greeted by The Funeral Director (a charming Marcel Dragonier) upon entering A Funeral for Clowns, Vincenzo Aliberti’s spellbinding play on stage now at the Toronto Fringe Festival. A pair of clown legs stick out of a coffin beside an alter decorated in the style of Commedia dell’Arte, and The Dead Clown (Geoffrey Armour) looks on as mourners arrive to send him off.

The procession includes the family of the deceased: his cranky “Poppa” (played by a very funny Issac Kessler), his little lady Millie (Valerie Cina), and younger, narcoleptic brother Noaman (the gifted Kat Letwin). Also present is The Professional Mourner (Joanne D’Angelo), and The Musician (violinist Mirela Pilaf). Brass music plays as a stream of clowns flow in (all played by the brilliant Dragonier), and The Dead Clown’s loved ones share their memories in a entertaining and ultimately uplifting ceremony.

A Funeral for Clowns is a well-paced production, featuring a talented cast—with a stand-out performance by Letwin as the inquisitive Noaman—original set, prop and lighting design by Matthew Pochwalowski and creative costumes by Dragonieri and Esther Dragonieri. This is one funeral you don’t want to miss.

Run to the last two performances of A Funeral for Clowns—July 14 at 11:00pm and July 15 at 9:45pm (Patron’s Pick) at the Annex Theatre. Visit fringetoronto.com for more information and to buy tickets.

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