Two slightly loopy time-traveling Victorian women, eager for membership to The Royal Geographic Society, are setting course for the 2012 Cincinnati Fringe Festival. Cecily and Gwendolyn's Fantastical Cincinnati Anthropological Inquisitorial Probe will take place Thursday, May 31-Friday, June 8 at 1425 Main, 1425 Main Street, Cincinnati. Tickets to the show cost $12 and are available online at cincyfringe.com or at Know Theatre of Cincinnati, 1120 Jackson Street. More information about Cecily and Gwendolyn is available at www.cecilyandgwendolyn.com.
Fourth-wall-free, style-defying, audience-interactive, completely improvised theater -- Cecily and Gwendolyn's Fantastical Cincinnati Anthropological Inquisitorial Probe is a unique theatrical experiment. Gathering the final data necessary to complete their sure-to-be-definitive work on the history of all human cultures, Cecily Marlborough (Kelly A. Jennings) and Gwendolyn Hamm (Karen Getz), two time-traveling Victorian Women and Self-Proclaimed Social Anthropologists, land in Ohio for the first time, to conduct their field-studies on willingly-gathered test subject audiences, unearthing the surprising, hysterical, often magical elements of our unexamined, modern lives. (And hopefully earning their much-deserved-but long-denied membership to The Royal Geographic Society.)
Thursday, May 31, 7:15 PM
Saturday, June 2, 7:00 PM
Sunday, June 3, 8:00 PM
Wednesday, June 6, 9:00 PM
Friday, June 8 8:45 PM
Cecily and Gwendolyn's Fantastical…is unique in that the experiences of the audience dictate the actions of the evening, everyone has an opportunity to participate. By the end of a show,
audiences have had an immediate and engaging experience, they find themselves part of a mini
community; they have closely examined deeply held assumptions and beliefs about themselves, those around them and the wider world in which they live. The eccentric and fantastical? nature
of Cecily and Gwendolyn as people new to the culture allows this to occur in a non- threatening and lighthearted way. It is the naiveté of the characters which allows audiences to both challenge and validate their personal experiences. Through the eyes and often comic analysis of Cecily and Gwendolyn audiences see themselves united in one common community or with a common belief. There is no "4th wall," in the performance the audience is involved immediately, engaged in conversation, asked to take notes, and encouraged to participate in experiments. Cecily and Gwendolyn loosely guide the shape of each evening drawing inspiration from anthropological studies and the input and interests of the audience.
You've never seen anything like this …
Philadelphia based theater-improv artists Karen Getz and Kelly Jennings have created a style of performance unlike anything audiences have seen on stage before. Drawing inspiration from their extensive shared improv backgrounds, an eclectic interest in science and the humanities, combined with a strong belief that live theater should immediately engage and draw people into the story has lead them to the development of Cecily and Gwendolyn's Fantastical… Getz and Jennings take the best of both the edgy "without-a-net? feeling of improvisation and the clarity of scripted theater and draw people into an experience of shared storytelling, imagination and community.
Audiences are not generally accustomed to genuinely having their thoughts and experiences expressed, challenged or validated on stage in front of them. More traditional theater purports to build community representing the interests of the audience yet most often the performance remains the singular vision of the playwright, director, or producing company.
Long-form improv is a more scenic driven performance style and (as opposed to playing short games similar to Whose Line or ComedySportz) attempts to reveal underlying presumptions, taboos, and beliefs of an audience, yet even so, it is still entirely driven by the experiences of the improvisers on stage. Say Getz and Jennings, "We aren't interested in embarrassing or making fun of anyone. While Cecily and Gwendolyn can be direct and forward in their observations and comments their motivations come strictly from intellectual curiosity."
Kelly A. Jennings appears appearing under an exclusive arrangement with Actors' Equity Association. This production is presented as a part of the 2012 Cincinnati Fringe Festival. For more information about Karen and Kelly visit their respective websites: KarenGetz.com and