Fringe 2013: Limbo review

There’s a healthy bit of confusion going on in Limbo, but If you’ve got an obsessive penchant for one-man monologues, it shouldn’t disappoint you too badly.

Andrew Bailey tells a story of his own coming of age while coping with various social anxiety issues often stemming from his religion, and at the same time he tries to deliver a humorous, yet serious explanation of the meaning of life. He purports to solve the philosophical question in the first minute of his monologue and then “unsolve” it for the next 59.

This premise is a fairly successful one, but depending on how you interpret his solution, you might feel that he either undersells the rest of the play, or too drastically diverges from his initial point.

Walking the tightrope between comedy and drama is a difficult task that Limbo struggles with in nearly every scene

Bailey invokes the multiple characters in his life in an effective way that keeps the emotion of each of scene genuine, but when transitioning between each scene, I felt that his monologue struggled to find a clear, efficient flow.

While Bailey is well rehearsed, elements of the script often make the purpose of each scene unclear (no matter how genuine the performance.) Some of these out-of-place moments did draw a few chuckles from me on more than one occasion, but the story that Bailey tells doesn’t feel like it needs these extra laughs.

Limbo delivers a meandering look at the life of a troubled youth, and it answers most of the questions that it poses about life in a rewarding way, but is suffers from identity issues that made me wonder why a serious drama was trying to be so funny.

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