Fringe favorite Jon Bennett performs three one-man shows at the Venue this weekend



This month’s edition of Fringe Year Round brings back popular Australian storyteller Jon Bennett, performing three different shows that he’s presented at the Orlando Fringe: My Dad’s Deaths, Fire in the Meth Lab and Pretending Things Are a Cock.

Bennett’s website claims that in 2009, he “realised his talent for placing his groin next to inanimate objects and created the hugely popular Internet photographic phenomenon Pretending Things Are a Cock,” which is sort of like saying you invented planking – except that could possibly be true, whereas boys have been pretending things are their cocks for as long as boys have had cocks.

The snicker-inducing conceit of that show, irresistible though it is (a co-worker, talking about PTAAC: “It’s probably not very long”), shouldn’t undercut viewers’ perception of the depth of these three shows. They are consistently name-dropped on the Fringe lawn as “the best thing I saw this year,” and Fringe word of mouth, the most reliable measure of a hit, is not to be disregarded. Pretending Things Are a Cock is actually a rather sweet travelogue (though the slides are a bit raunchy); My Dad’s Deaths and Fire in the Meth Lab both take on complicated familial relationships. Bennett’s patented mix of outrageous humor with genuine emotion may make you laugh until you cry. 

Pretending Things Are a Cock, 8 p.m. Friday; Fire in the Meth Lab, 8 p.m. Saturday, My Dad’s Deaths, 3 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 16-18 | The Venue, 511 Virginia Drive | | $16 per show, $42 for all three

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