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FringeNYC 2011 Announces Overall Excellence Award Winners

by Karen Tortora-Lee on August 28, 2011

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We’re thrilled to pass along the Overall Excellence Award Winners for 2011 FringeNYC.  Some of our very favorite shows and performers are being celebrated and we’re so thankful that we were able to experience these talented performances this year.  Congratulations to all the winners!


August 28, 2011 — Winners of the 2011 FringeNYC Overall Excellence Awards, as selected by an independent panel of nearly 50 theater professionals, are as follows:


Overall Production/Play

  • PigPen Presents The Mountain Song
    • What we said: As always the only disappointment with PigPen is when the play is over; it’s hard to watch them leave the stage – the same way it is hard for a child to watch that

      favorite relative go home at the end of a giddy day of make-believe. The good news is PigPen is relocating to New York City so those who can’t get enough of them will now be able to see them a lot more. And as long as they’ll be putting on shows, I’ll be in the audience, watching: amazed and dazzled.

  • The More Loving One

Overall Production/Musical

  • Yeast Nation
  • Pearl’s Gone Blue



  • Jennifer Barnhart (The Legend of Julie Taymor,or The Musical That Killed Everybody!)
  • Ryan Barry (In the Summer Pavilion)
  • Miles Cooper (Elysian Fields)
  • Patrick Byas (Sammy Gets Mugged)
  • Casey McClellan (My Name Is Billy)
  • Brian Charles Rooney (Winner Takes All)
  • Lauren Hennessy (Ampersand: A Romeo & Juliet Story)
    • What we said: [Hennessy] is breathtakingly real … often funny, sometimes sarcastic and deeply sexy … her chemistry with Choura (not only during their intimate moments

      but during her moments of longing as well) can be felt all the way in the back row, and considering this show is playing at The Ellen Stewart Theatre that’s saying a lot. When she sings she seduces and bewitches everyone in the room.


  • Nicholas Billon (Greenland)
  • A.D. Penedo (The Three Times She Knocked)
    • What we said: Writer A.D. Penedo has successfully taken a different type of relationship and made it not only understandable but accessible. By giving Eric a mechanism where he constantly breaks the fourth wall and addresses the audience we’re given a unique look into the mind of a man consumed not so much by a woman but by a way of operating. By Eric himself explaining his little quirks and foibles to us we are left free to sit back and watch as his confessions to us pave the way for his actions toward Tara. And sure, while he may seem a little out of his mind, at least he’s explaining his motives to us.

  • Bella and the Pool Boy (Dennis Flanagan)


Music Composition

  • Chris Rael (Araby)
  • Dusty Brown (The Ballad of Rusty and Roy)



  • Jersey Shoresical
    • What we said: Fans of (or those who admit to watching) Jersey Shore will love Jersey Shoresical for the extreme attention to detail paid by the creative team.  People who have

      never seen one moment of Jersey Shore will also love Jersey Shoresical – because the final product is just that good.  Either way, this was one hour of entertainment that left me clamoring for more.

  • The Bardy Bunch: The War of the Families Partridge and Brady
    • What we said: What delights so thoroughly is how faithful each character remains to their Brady/Partridge origins while faithfully moving the Shakespearean plots along.  This story was just waiting to be done.  Thanks to the fantastic team of Garvey and Stern it has now been done perfectly.
  • Stimulated!
  • Crawling with Monsters


Costume Design

  • Stephanie Alexander (Le Gourmand, or Gluttony!)
  • Mark Richard Caswell (Parker and Dizzy’s Fabulous Journey to the End of the Rainbow)
  • Tara DeVincenzo (Technodulia Dot Com)



  • Greg Foro (Hamlet)
    • What we said: At mid-performance, just after Hamlet has rigged a play to prick the conscience of his murderous uncle, Claudius, the two characters circle the stage silently for a beat, eyeing each other variously as hunter and quarry, before Claudius calls -”Give me some light!”- at which the house is plunged into darkness and we are moved to intermission. This delicious moment is a sample of the thoughtful direction and stagecraft on display here.
  • Joshua Kahan Brody (Fourteen Flights)
  • Alaska Reece Vance (The Disorientation of Butterflies)


Solo Performance

  • Donna/Madonna
  • The Day the Sky Turned Black
  • Be Careful! The Sharks Will Eat You!

  • Paper Cut
    • What we said: Rasooly supplies all the voices while working the miniature mechanics and characters. It’s an inspired visual performance. To a movie-literate audience, it’s catnip.
  • Heroes and Other Strangers



  • Wallstories
  • When the Sky Breaks 3D
    • What we said: The choreography of When the Sky Breaks 3D is nothing short of amazing. Several scenes stand out in my mind – one in particular is a scene where the dancers are fighting. At first two, then four, in a syncopated expression of movement; they struggle against each other, and ultimately themselves. The movements are strong and forceful, falling and rising, breaking apart and coming together – mirroring so many different struggles within our lives. The audience held its breath until the final resolution, as the dancers stood in unity together under the threatening sky.


Video Design

  • Cinty Ionescu (Nils’ Fucked Up Day)


TheaterMania Audience Favorite Award

  • COBU – Dance like Drumming, Drum like Dancing.


Congratulations again to all those recognized for overall excellence!!



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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

MariahNo Gravatar August 28, 2011 at 4:03 pm

Just over the moon for Lauren Hennessy. So richly deserved. Hooray!

Karen Tortora-LeeNo Gravatar August 28, 2011 at 4:31 pm

Absolutely, Mariah – with much praise to you as well for writing such a great part and letting Ms. Hennessy’s talent’s shine so brightly! – Karen

MariahNo Gravatar August 28, 2011 at 7:36 pm

ALWAYS my pleasure with the fabulous Ms. Hennessy. And thank you Karen! Cheers!


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