Vancouver Fringe Festival hit Multiple Organism wins big at awards night

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      Befitting its name, the Vancouver Fringe Festival sex-charged shadow-puppet show Multiple Organism won multiple awards at the event's annual awards night September 17.

      The Mind of a Snail production not only took home the Georgia Straight Critics' Pick against strong runners up Ain’t True and Uncle False, Bombay Black, Hyena Subpoena, and Six Fine Lines. It also nabbed an artistic risk award (against runners up Slumber Here and Katharine Ferns Is In Stitches) and a coveted Cultchivating the Fringe Award--a prize from the Cultch that recognizes a performance that demonstrates a strong potential for further development.

      If you missed it, you can still catch it along with some of the fest's other offerings: it's won a spot in the Public Market Pick of the Fringe holdover series at Performance Works. Multiple Organism happens September 24 at 6 p.m. In our review, critic Kathleen Oliver wrote of the play, "Even diehard fans of Mind of a Snail ... are in for a surprise—and a treat.” 

      Other Picks are Swordplay (September 20 at 8:45 p.m.); An Arrangement of Shoes (September 21 at 8:45 p.m.); Cry-Baby: The Musical (September 23 at 6:45 p.m.); Bombay Black by Anosh Irani (September 23 at 9 p.m.); and Chris & Travis (September 24 at 7:45 p.m.)

      Meanwhile, Isabelle Kirouac and Nayana Fielkov for Habitats won the Joanna Maratta prize for best demonstrating the founding spirit of the Fringe; Sex-T-Rex's Swordplay: A Play of Swords took home a B.C. Touring Council award; and Cat Kidd for Hyena Subpoena and Paul Strickland for Ain’t True and Uncle False won as volunteer picks.

      And the Fringe dedicated its annual Spirit of the Fringe award to outgoing director David Jordan, "awarded to the artist, company, or show that best exhibits David’s spirit of tenacity, leadership, and calm under pressure". Slumber Here took the honour. Jordan is headed to the City of Burnaby as arts services manager, which includes overseeing the Shadbolt Centre for the Arts.

      In all, the Fringe reported a successful year, with several shows, including Draining the Swamp, An Arrangement of Shoes, and Almost a Stepmom. Bombay Black by Anosh Irani selling out their performances by the first Sunday of the festival!