For PSY Kicks
Created by Mike Kosowan
Produced by KosoWHAT (Ottawa, Canada)
60M | Comedy
Content Notes: Abrupt Loud Noise, Audience Participation
By Julia Bueneman
This wild ride of a show starts on a slightly serious note with a disclaimer about what you are about to both see and participate in—lights low, the mood intense. Through claps and tight lighting changes, we are introduced to the character taking us through this journey: an experimental psychologist with a passion for sharing knowledge (and yet-to-be-proven theories). We follow these theories of our host as he combines psych history, sleight-of-mind, and science (pseudo-science?) to prove that while not all the patrons are psychic, a good few of them may be!
Kosowan was charming and sprinkled dark existential humour throughout the show as we were thrown into his laboratory. The set was minimal: just enough to have patrons curious about what was to come as our host called folks up (consensually) to rein in their psychic abilities. Each bit showcased a different aspect of psych, from memory to mediumship, and I was giggling the whole time. The slight chaos of our scientist host is contagious, and the audience interactions were smooth sailing and comfortable as he demonstrated delightfully mind-bending displays of different branches of psychology in action. He would also drop incredibly thorough psych history facts throughout the show, giving the audience some psychological context to chew on before diving into the next bit.
Our scientist host also weaves a sweet and very human storyline throughout the show: inviting us to connect with him on a fun and deeper level while diving into the challenges of interpersonal connection. He also managed to link familiar and nostalgic sounds to accompany different parts of the show, which I found myself smiling about and trying to place.
With a lovely variety of truly impressive feats and a sweet storyline, this show was a really great example of why I love Fringe so much. I appreciate it when a show leaves me both giggling and wondering about the inner workings of my brain. Overall, I thought it was incredibly enjoyable and would be a wonderful addition to anyone’s Fringe must-see list.