Happiness™ is wonderful experience. Hilarious with some surprising (in a good way) darker moments, this is one of the best plays showing at the Fringe, hands down. It’s also organized in a way that features some very enjoyable audience interaction. You need to get out and see this show, now!
Should you see it?
How happy are you in life? Somewhat? Not at all? Well then, you need to get out to the T.A.N. Cafe to see Happiness™ because I guarantee you you’ll leave with a smile on your face after watching the experienced Peter Barrel (Cory Thibert) and eager new intern James Lemon (Tony Adams) hilariously pitch the life-improving products from H.P.L. to you and the rest of the audience. From prop-comedy with the various products, to simply great chemistry between the performers, Happiness™ has just about everything you could hope for in a Fringe show.
First and foremost, the actors, who also wrote the piece, deserve significant praise. The comedic timing and charisma of Thibert and Adams is a joy to watch, and they both throw themselves into their respective roles. I was engrossed by the suaveness of Barrel and the kind-hearted yet inept Lemon. They get to show even more range when they play a quarreling couple in a scenario presented to show how the fictitious H.P.L.’s products can improve your life, and it’s one of the funniest parts of the show.
The structure of the piece, a sales pitch to the audience, is great and makes it stand-out from other shows at the Fringe. The T.A.N. Cafe’s relatively small space is utilized perfectly as you are right up close to the actors. This really helps the audience interact with the them when they ask patrons to answer survey questions. The promotional videos for H.P.L. are also a treat with their goofy comments that are played completely straight. I won’t ruin the highlight of the show, but let’s just say it will leave a bounce in your step.
However, it’s not all fun and games with this show. It gets progressively darker, especially when the company’s owner arrives. Despite the shift in tone, I wasn’t bothered at all. It was gradual and felt appropriate for the show. So, if you haven’t already, get out and see Happiness™ to start your journey towards a better life.
But that’s just my opinion. To let me know what you thought, leave a comment below!