Friday, August 26, 2016

FRINGE: Treya's Last Dance

A quick note before we get into the review. My other Fringe reviews are on Theatre is Easy--American Strippers is here and Colorblind'd is here. Theatre is Easy reviews every single Fringe show, so if you're trying to figure out what to see during the final weekend of the festival, definitely check that out.
Shyam Bhatt in Treya's Last Dance. Photo credit: Abhishekharee Parthasarathy
Watching someone speed date turns out to be a lot more entertaining than participating in it. In the British one-woman show Treya's Last Dance, written and performed by Shyam Bhatt, we hear about Treya's life through the answers she gives to banal questions at a speed-dating event, which she attends at her parents' insistence. (Why would anyone go on speed dating other than to please their parents?) This proves to be a smart structure for a solo show, as it requires that she tells her stories in short intervals, before moving onto a question from the next suitor.

The tone starts off light, but turns sad as the show continues (not unlike real dating). As she reveals more about herself, she is forced to confront a recent tragedy. (Speed dating works as therapy too. Who knew?) Bhatt is able to balance the humor and pain and is gifted at transforming into the different people she impersonates. She even does a spot-on American accent. On top of all that, she gives insights into being the child of immigrants and how the Indian community deals with LGBTQ issues--a topic not often explored in the theater.