Review: The Anomaly Presented by the Youth Infringement Festival

Meaghan Flaherty

            With only two Fringe showings given to the fan favorite from this year’s Youth Infringement Festival, The Anomaly written by Ryan Nadon and directed by Colin Giles , it is important that our community gives as much support to youth theatre as it can next weekend. The Anomaly, though far from perfect, is funny, short and light, while offering some excellent performances.

After being given a large grant to conduct research on a space meteor, Dr. Joseph (Paul J. Piekoszewski) hires Robert, played by DJ Johnston, the research assistant, to help him. Robert immediately clicks with Emily (Joy Mwandemange), Joseph’s daughter, but Joseph’s wife Margaret, played by Katie Volkert, clearly has a more sinister agenda. Unfortunately there was no program, so I can’t credit any of the actors I don’t personally know, but they all do a fine job in entertaining the audience and playing larger than life characters.

One of my personal favorites is the character who I call, The Mystery Man, as played by Mitchel Johnson, who simply walks on stage to say something that indicates a passage of time and slowly strolls off again. His presence is never explained, and I love the random element of it.

Piekoszewski, however, is clearly the standout performer. The onstage energy picks up when he is around and his comedic timing is impeccable. What also intrigued me about his character was that he was able to modulate his performance to fit the scene.

The show itself could use a dramaturg, some background noise, and work on the pacing, but overall it is fun, often times laugh out loud funny, and worth checking out.