Freida Austin in&nbsp;<em>Rose Nose Rhapsody</em>&nbsp;at Hip Pocket Theatre

Review: Rose Nose Rhapsody | Hip Pocket Theatre | Silver Creek Amphitheatre

The Nose Knows

At Hip Pocket Theatre, Lake Simons and John Dyer's Rose Nose Rhapsody is filled with excellent clowning.

published Thursday, July 17, 2014

The cast of Rose Nose Rhapsody at Hip Pocket Theatre

Fort Worth — Though the extent of most Americans’ experience with clowns doesn’t go beyond the Ringling Brothers, the painted or masked comic performers go back hundreds of years and have an important place in our cultural history. In Hip Pocket Theatre’s Rose Nose Rhapsody, by Lake Simons and John Dyer, the clown’s famous red nose is used as a device through which to explore these characters.

Photo: John Carlisle Moore
Kristi Ramos Toler in Rose Nose Rhapsody at Hip Pocket Theatre

Though it’s an overall delightful performance, essentially consisting of a series of clowning scenes featuring the ensemble, red nose-donning cast of Frieda Austin, Jozy Camp, Christina Cranshaw, Allen Dean, Jeff Stanfield, Kristi Ramos Toler and James Warila, there is an implied narrative structure which never quite coalesces. Dyer provides periodic radio announcements that both serve as a break between scenes but also portend some sort of ominous, apocalyptic type vibe or event. It’s never quite clear.

That said, the scenes, when taken at face value, are thoroughly entertaining. Whether it’ a picnic, a golf outing, hairdressing, a science experiment, or creating a poor symphonic rendition of Rhapsody in Blue, the performers, under Simon’s skilled direction, fully embrace the playfulness of their nez rouge.

There’s even a moment, in the mesmerizing yet slightly confusing climactic scene, which gives the audience a flash of the expert puppetry Simons is so well-known for.

The only quibble is that there is an implication of an overarching narrative and some statement or exploration on the red nose as a mask, as addressed in a statement and quote from famous French actor and mime Jaques Lecoq (with whom Lake Simons studied) in the program. Dyer’s intermittent interruptions to the scenes, which the performers often react to with fear, suggests something that is never quite clear. Otherwise, the show is just several mostly unrelated scenes of clowning.

Good clowning. That’s important to distinguish. The plot issues are relatively minor. The show as a whole is still a lot of fun. Simons, Dyer and the cast collaborated to create a fun evening of traditional clowning that plays with human folly, emotion, and everyday life with a healthy dose of slapstick and pratfalls. And wouldn’t life be a lot more fun that way?

» Here's video of the hairdresser scene in Rose Nose Rhapsody:

 Thanks For Reading

Dates, Prices, & Other Details

View the Article Slideshow

Comment on this Article

Share this article on Social Media
Click or Swipe to close
The Nose Knows
At Hip Pocket Theatre, Lake Simons and John Dyer's Rose Nose Rhapsody is filled with excellent clowning.
by Kris Noteboom

Share this article on Facebook
Tweet this article
Share this article on Google+
Share this article via email
Click or Swipe to close
Click or Swipe to close
views on theater, dance, classical music, opera and comedy performances
news & notes
reports from the local performing arts scene
features & interviews
who and what are moving and shaking in the performing arts scene
season announcements
keep up with the arts groups' upcoming seasons
listen to interviews with people in the local performing arts scene
media reviews
reviews and stories on performing arts-related film, TV, recordings and books
arts organizations
learn more about the local producing and presenting arts groups
performance venues
learn more about the theaters and spaces where the arts happen
keep up with fabulous ticket giveaways and other promotions
connect to local arts crowdfunding campaigns
post or view auditions and performing arts-related classes, services, jobs and more
about us
info on TheaterJones, our staff, what we do and how to contact us
Click or Swipe to close
First Name:
Last Name:
Date of Birth:
ZIP Code:
Your Email Address:
Click or Swipe to close
Join TheaterJones Around the Web

Follow Us on Twitter

Subscribe to our Youtube Channel

Click or Swipe to close
Search the TheaterJones Archives
Use any or all of the options below to search through all of reviews, interviews, features and special sections. If you are looking for a an event, use the calendar section of this website. This search will not search through the calendar.
Article Title Search:

Description Search:
TheaterJones Contributor:

TheaterJones Section:

Showing on or after:      Showing on or before:  
Click or Swipe to close
We welcome your comments

I am discussing:  

Your Name:
Your Email Adress:

please enter the text below and then click or tap SUBMIT :