Fringe Review Ms. Bea Haven is Back and ‘Beauterus’ in “Is That How Clowns Keep You Up All Night?”

2019 MONTREAL FRINGE FESTIVAL COVERAGE

Fiona Clark in “Is That How Clowns Keep You Up All Night?”
(Photo Credit: Mihai Son)

I don’t know about you, but I blocked out most of my memories of high school as soon as I walked across the stage and collected my diploma. High school is full of awkward moments, hormones and discovering who you are – except not really discovering who you are because most of that self-discovery comes way later in life anyway. It’s also coincidentally where most people have sex-ed. Ah yes, the memories are flooding back now, there was a banana, and a condom, and my male science teacher who visibly blushed and began to sweat when he started talking about menstruation. We all have memories that we would rather forget. 

If this is how you feel then you definitely shouldn’t miss Maximaliste Productions’ “Is That How Clowns Keep You Up All Night?”. Ms. Bea Haven, your new teacher, is played by two-time Montreal Spirit of the Fringe Award winner (2016-17), Montreal’s Best Kisser (2015) and certified sexpert Fiona Clark. She’s here and she’s on a mission; to replace those awkward memories with a super fantastically wacky queer sex-ed class, covering many topics left out of the standard version given in most high schools. Not only does Beatrice, in her signature orange tailcoat, demystify these topics for us, but her class is hilarious, sparkly, interactive, and full of body positive bops like the queen of queer herself Lady Gaga’s “Born this Way”.


Fiona Clark in “Is That How Clowns Keep You Up All Night?”
(Photo Credit: Pascale Yensen)

Before the show begins, Beatrice greets her audience in the lobby of Mainline Theatre, shaking their hands and welcoming them into class, before disappearing to welcome the real host of today’s show – the wild and eccentric Beatrice! We’ll also be joined by some guest reporters, a couple of other Beatrices, throughout the performance as they report from a variety of seldom explored locations, such as from the inside of a pair of local testicles, to illustrate what the exciting daily life of a common sperm is like! Or a porn set to talk about the myths and unattainable standards and fantasies that are perpetuated by the industry!

Her comically large props and set pieces like the roughly five foot tall vagina, which Beatrice emerges through at the beginning of the show and the pad that she wraps around herself to talk about menstruation make the topics that would have made my high school science teacher blush accessible through comedy and laughter. 

In my opinion, comedy is the best way to tackle what might be a controversial subject for some, or just to remind us that our more traditional definitions of sex are not the only ones that should be taught in schools. With certain school boards in North America still on the fence about whether or not to even include sex-ed as a class, or who still send permission slips home to parents to ask if they want their child to attend the class. With so many schools that still teach a curriculum based on abstinence-only, this show is necessary and important. I’m hungry for more of Ms. Bea Haven’s antics!


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Maximaliste Productions presents “Is That How Clowns Keep You Up All Night?”
at the 29th St-Ambroise Montreal Fringe Festival

Performances: June 6 – 16, 2019
Venue: 06 – MainLine Theatre,
3997 Saint-Laurent, Montréal, H2W 1Y4
Admission: $10 – 12 | Ages 18+
Box Office:
514.849.FEST (3378)
boxoffice@montrealfringe.ca 
www.montrealfringe.ca

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Jasmine Winter

Theatre Reviewer at Montreal Theatre Hub
Jasmine Winter is a Montreal based actress and creator who graduated from Dawson's Professional Theatre Program where she got the opportunity to interpret such beloved and classic characters as Romeo (Romeo and Juliet), Mrs. Bennet (Pride and Prejudice), Alice Sycamore (You Can't Take It With You), and Middle Daughter (Friends by Kobo Abe). More recently, she worked with Cirque du Soleil as a pre-show clown in their show "Juste une p'tite nuite: an hommage to Les Colocs". On her own time, she's working on being the best darn clown she can be. When not on stage, she reviews local theatre with Montreal Theatre Hub and teaches multiple theatre classes to kids aged 4 to 12.
Jasmine Winter

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