2013 Toronto Fringe Festival: My High-Heeled Life

Katharine McLeod walks tall in this playful performance

Created and Performed by Katharine McLeod
Directed and Dramaturged by Rod Ceballos

Katharine McLeod

What is happiness, and how does one know when they have achieved it? What is it that makes us cynical, jealous, or insecure? These and other important questions are mulled over between sips of champagne in Katharine McLeod's My High-Heeled Life: Or, How I Learned to Keep Worrying and Love My Stilettos, now playing at the Tarragon Theatre's Solo Room as part of this year's Toronto Fringe Festival. Underscored by the narrator's love of shoes, this clever production shines a bright light on various life moments and experiences and the feelings they evoke.

Clad in a little black dress, bright red lipstick and, of course, black pumps, McLeod begins by exuberantly sharing her love for shoes with the audience. What is most noticeable about McLeod in her opening musings is her enthusiasm for life in general, and her willingness to be open with her audience about exactly who she is. As she describes an instance where a bucket of water was accidentally dumped on her from above on a New York City street, she notes her realization that it could have been worse (it could have been urine, instead), allowing the audience a glimpse of her optimism. She also shares another NYC tale, in which she describes getting dressed up each day in her sexiest shoes to walk by a group of men outside a construction site on her way to work—it made her feel desirable.

These glimpses into McLeod's life are peppered with short, intelligently crafted asides, in which she ponders the true meaning of happiness, asking the audience to close their eyes, take a deep breath, and ask themselves if they are truly happy. She also provides fun historical facts about shoes, and at one point passes around a tin of Lindor chocolate, even though the term “chocoholic” is a self-indulgent one that she refuses to subscribe to.

Clever, funny, and also touching, My High-Heeled Life is led by a sharp-witted blonde bombshell who captivates her audience while never pretending to be anyone but herself. The audience leaves feeling as though McLeod understands who they are, and can relate to their own neuroses. McLeod's honesty and the versatile nature of this production make it highly entertaining and engaging. Don't miss it!

My High-Heeled Life runs until July 14 at the Tarragon Theatre's Solo Room. Visit fringetoronto.com for showtimes.

Show Dates: 
Thu, 2013-07-04 - Sun, 2013-07-14
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