Who: Seven young people from the Six Nations of the Grand River Indian Reserve , performing Digital NDN .
Buzz: Members of Laughing Dog Plays (created by actor Gary Farmer to give at-risk native youth a voice) offer a take on the current struggle with the government over historic land claims. An inside look at rez life, the show combines indigenous traditions and modern theatre, and provides an opportunity to see restored self-esteem expressed through social action theatre.
RYAN GLADSTONE and BRUCE HORAK
Who: Monster Theatre regulars Gladstone and Horak join Katherine Sanders in Jesus Christ: The Lost Years , a comedy that might make even Mel Gibson laugh.
Buzz: These two transplanted Westerners have injected energy into the local scene with inventive spins on the classics (The Macbeth Show), this vast country of ours (The Canada Show) and the Fringe itself (Fringe Show: A Love Story). Expect irreverence (there are puppets!) but lots of smarts in their look at the man on the cross.
co-creator and performer in an undershirt , which explores the less-than-sparkling-clean inner lives of four obsessive, paranoid people in a laundromat.
Buzz: Opera librettist (Unfamiliar), playwright (The Demonstration), translator (The Train), former child TV star (Are You Afraid Of The Dark?) and director/dramaturg Deveau infuses his works with a gay sensibility and strong theatricality. If anyone can make life among the washers and dryers dramatic, it's Deveau.
Who: The half-dozen comedy vets in Plan "LIVE" From Outer Space .
Buzz: Get your tickets now for this stage version of Ed Wood Jr. 's campy low-budget howler about zombies and aliens. Jim Gordon Taylor directs a starry cast ( Aurora Browne , Sandy Jobin-Bevans , Ron Sparks , Lisa Brooke and Chris Gibbs , among others), many of them Second City alumni, who'll be sure to take this B-movie spoof seriously and get some major laughs.
Who: Director of The Balloon Tree and Desperate Housepets .
Buzz: Lamb, associate director of Lorraine Kimsa Theatre for Young People 's drama school, scored a hit recently with the teen-acted After Juliet. Now he does double directing duty, juggling a version of Phoebe Gilman 's kids' fairy tale and a remount of the SummerWorks piece about the dramatic lives of our furry friends. Let's just hope one of the kittens doesn't start playing with the balloons, or we'll have explosions aplenty.
Who: Writer/actor in Evil Is The New Good , the follow-up to his darkly funny Fringe debut, Fear Of A Brown Planet.
Buzz: Seguin's one of the city's most daring stand-up comics, one of those guys who gets an equal number of laughs and "Did I just hear that?" gasps. He proved he could handle the rhythms of theatre with Brown Planet, and the new show wowed Montreal Fringe audiences. Get ready for some intelligent social and political observations you won't see on prime time.
Who: Co-writer and performer, Queen For A Day .
Buzz: Haggis, always good for an onstage laugh, and her writing partner Nikole Kritikos give a reality-show update to the 50s rags-to-riches game show, now with women and gay men as contestants. She'll have a royal time matching comedy with fellow performers Bruce Hunter , Ellen-Ray Hennessy and Peter Lynch . Wanna bet on who scratches her way to the crown awarded by an audience applause meter to the neediest, saddest participant?
Who: Host of Late Night At The Fringe With Monkey Toast .
Buzz: Fans of Shore's biweekly Monkey Toast series, in which he interviews a celebrity and an ace team of improvisers riff on ideas from the interview, will be happy to know that they won't have to wait 14 days till the next show. Shore and a rotating cast - among them Lisa Merchant , Janet Van De Graaff , Jen Goodhue , Herbie Barnes and Paul Bates - perform each night of the Fringe (except Sunday), and the guests (five nightly) will be performers from different Fringe shows. Best of all? It's free! (Or at least pay what you can.)
Who: Actor in the Biblically inspired musical Welcome To Eden, Population: 2 .
Buzz: Martell's done a lot of big shows - playing Louise in Gypsy to the Mama Rose of both Nora McLellan and Bernadette Peters, and Sophie in Mamma Mia - but here she tackles a pocket musical, Allison McWood and Mark Selby 's light, unconventional riff on Adam and Eve's garden experience. Can she resist temptation long enough to belt a show-stopping number?
Who: Writer/performer in A Time To Dance , a biographical look at Skala's great aunt, Elizabeth Polk , an acclaimed Austrian modern dancer.
Buzz: A few years ago, Skala burst onto the Fringe scene with Lilia!, a warm and moving look at her grandmother, the Oscar-nominated actor Lilia Skala. Now the magnetic performer deals with her grandmother's sister, a professional dancer of mixed Catholic/Jewish origins who lived through two world wars and 9/11. If this show works out, expect another - there's one sister left in that family.