Fringe Festival 2015

Fringe Review: Dishwasher

Please note: This article is published as an archive copy from Philadelphia City Paper. My City Paper is not affiliated with Philadelphia City Paper. Philadelphia City Paper was an alternative weekly newspaper in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The last edition was published on October 8, 2015.

Brian Feldman comes washes dishes at your house and then reads a monologue.

Fringe Review: Dishwasher

SHOW: Dishwasher 

GENRE: Performance Art/Conceptual

GROUP: Brian Feldman Projects

ATTENDED: Fri, Sept. 4, 11 a.m., My House

CLOSES: Sept 12th

BRIEF SELF-DESCRIPTION: "Award-winning D.C.-based conceptual artist Brian Feldman (24 Minute Embrace) will go to your home, hand wash the dirty dishes in your kitchen sink and, once completed, cold read any monologue of your choosing. Is he a better actor or dishwasher? You decide."

WE THINK: Yup, that's exactly what happened. I had some friends over for breakfast, we made some muffins and a big frittata and cut up a pineapple, I started some challah dough, and then this guy showed up, washed our dishes, and performed a pair of monologues we gave him. Good times!

Brian Feldman is, from all available evidence, a stand-up guy: good-natured, hard-working, a gracious and considerate house guest, an eminently pleasant fellow to spend a couple hours with. (Oh yeah – he's not the speediest dishwasher, but then we all have our flaws.) Apparently he has many curious if, generally speaking, wholesome ideas about ways to spend his time: hugging his mother for 24 minutes, publicly, in three cities on a single day, for instance, or mounting a Fourth of July (vegan) hot dog-eating contest judged not on quantity eaten but on quality of enjoyment. He'll bring a binder of information on these various activities for you to leaf through while you watch (or don't watch) him clean your plates – including copious press quotes from Orlando news outlets that amusingly, and emphatically, depict Feldman as the only interesting thing about Orlando. (He lives in DC now, but I say we all lobby for him to move here.)

However, much as I appreciated his careful and thorough work at our sink, and as nice as he was to chat with about theater, bike-shares, Floridian culture, etc., I was actually more impressed by his monologue reading. We couldn't decide so we gave him two. (They were short, though – apparently last night he was conscripted into cold-reading the entire Vagina Monologues...people!) While his rendition of Blanche duBois' Streetcar tirade was nothing outstanding – solid but serviceable – it was just a warm-up for a fantastic (and entirely unprepared) read through Maya's opening rant from Pig Iron's Hell Meets Henry Halfway.

I'm pretty sure the rest of Brian's shows are sold out, unfortunately, but try asking around – maybe somebody will invite you over for one. If you see him, ask if his burn is okay, and check to see if he's still wearing the dishwashing gloves I gave him.

I'm a little worried about him.

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