Fringe 2019 Review: 'War Paint'

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As a cisgender male, I’m fortunate that society doesn’t expect me to spend over 10% of my waking life on personal grooming, but thanks to first-time writer/performer Lily Garnett, I’ll now have a little more empathy the next time I’m waiting on my wife to apply her makeup. Garnett begins her autobiographical monologue War Paint barefaced, and applies her “battle armor” in stages throughout the show, while stripping away the layers of cultural pressures that underlie her complex, codependent relationship with cosmetics.

Director Rebekah Lane does a good job balancing Garnett’s movement, shifting between sitting a mirrored dressing table and stalking around the stage like a drill sergeant. As an emerging playwright, Lily could stand to lop a little off her script; a coda carping about social media seems strained, and an uncomfortable audience participation exercise has no payoff. But overall, Garnett’s brave effort to be an “authentic mess” onstage makes her a compelling new voice worth listening to, with or without her lipstick.

War Paint
Bored At Midnight Productions
Orlando FL
Blue
Ages 13 and up
60 minutes
$12
Thursday, May 16th 10:30 PM
Saturday, May 18th 8:30 PM
Sunday, May 19th 4:00 PM
Tuesday, May 21st 10:00 PM
Saturday, May 25th 10:15 PM
Sunday, May 26th 5:30