REVIEW: The Kyleness of Kyle

Blaine Newton weaves his way through several vignettes based on personal stories.

By Barbara Adams

Is it standup? Storytelling? Your friend’s affable dad regaling you with stories of his family history? The Kyless of Kyle is a mishmash of all of these things. A taco-in-a-bag of plays, it is at times a little saucy, a little cheesy, maybe not quite as spicy as you were hoping for, but still comforting nonetheless.

Playwright and performer Blaine Newton weaves his way through several vignettes based on personal stories; with switches in hats, glasses, and jackets, he morphs into a milquetoast preacher, a stereotypical Tim Hortons-toting Albertan, and a second-rate blues singer, among other characters. Newton’s affection for all his characters is the meat of this very likeable show. He plays each of them with gentle pathos while still poking a little fun.

While billed as a comedy, this play is rarely laugh-out-loud funny. Still, though, Newton’s writing is clever, at times truly beautiful, his rapid-fire delivery peppered with blink-and-you’ll-miss-it jokes, imagery, and references that had audience members at least grinning the whole time. Like many of the Fringe grounds treats, it may leave you craving more, but it was still satisfying enough.


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