Poly Queer Love Ballad, Awkward Hug, Hip Bang!, and Big Sister amid the winners at Vancouver Fringe Festival awards

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      Poly Queer Love Ballad nabbed two prizes at last evening's Fringe Awards Night: the Volunteer Choice Award and the Georgia Straight Critics' Pick Award. Reviewer Kathleen Oliver, who handed out the prize, had said of the spoken-word- and music-fuelled romantic journey "I defy you not to swoon."

      Poly Queer creator-performers Sara Vickruck and Anais West had also won the 2018 Fringe New Play Prize, announced during the Fringe Festival Lottery Party this past December.

      Elsewhere at the prize night, the BC Touring Council Award went to Awkward Hug and the Joanna Maratta Award and Mollie Bradley Award went to Hysteria.

      Big Sister wins extended life as a Cultchivating the Fringe Award winner, while two shows tied for the artistic-risk prize: Red Bastard and Hip.Bang! Presents Surveil. Elsewhere, the evocatively titled Charlie Petch from Mel Malarkey Gets The Bum’s Rush was recognized with the Spirit of the Fringe award.

      Poly Queer Love Ballad nabbed two awards and is coming back.


      For those who missed them, the just-announced Public Market Pick of the Fringe series at Performance Works from Wednesday to Sunday (September 19 through 23) offers a second chance to see some of the strongest productions. Look for SELF-ish, 5-Step Guide to Being German 2.0Poly Queer Love BalladSqueeze My Cans, Unscriptured, and The Lady Show; info and the schedule are here.

      And Fringe festivities won't even end with that, though the festival itself was officially put to bed last night. The Fringe is also hosting the Pick Plus, from Wednesday to Friday (September 19 to 210 at Performance Works, with hits it brings back from past Fringe events or from other Fringes.

      That wild assortment features 50 Shades of Vinyl — A Canadian ParodyHabitatsBasic Training, and The Birdmann FINALE. Find info and the schedule here