Calgary Fringe – Serving Bait to Rich People – Review

Serving Bait

Serving Bait to Rich People

August 2, 3, 4, 7, 9 and 10, 2013 

Artpoint Gallery

http://see.calgaryfringe.ca/events/397-serving-bait-to-rich-people

 

Alexa Fitzpatrick is a Jewish/Irish girl from Jersey who gave up a career in medicine to become a full-time bartender.  First at a dive bar in New York and then a dive bar in Aspen until finally she became a bartender/waiter in the posh Aspen location of the famous Nobu restaurant.  Alexa has taken her experiences bar tending and waitering and decided to create an amateurish one hour stand-up comedy routine about it all. It’s not about what you do, it’s about how well you do  and unfortunately for Alexa, her Fringe show Serving Bait to Rich People just isn’t up to snuff.

Standing on stage with a microphone delivering her one liners and some longer form jokes, Alexa has a likeable enough personality and some good energy, but not the content to pull off a well-rounded Fringe show. We get many well-worn punch lines instead of storyline (My sister has this great guy to set me up with, she says we have so much in common…we’re both single!)  and lines that just fall flat (Why do we never hear about wet wine? It’s a liquid, why is it called dry?). To be fair, Alex does have some smart bits mixed in with the banal, like her skewering of Cosmopolitan magazine’s philosophy which she claims tells women, “Remember girls, it’s all about pleasing him, so if he doesn’t like it, you’re doing it wrong and he doesn’t like you because you are fat.” It’s after her delivery of these clever and biting notions that the rest of her sex-laden, pedestrian comedy seems even more uninteresting.

But more problematic than this or the flow of the jokes which veer wildly all over the place in time, subject and theme, is the fact that Alexa has notes on stage to help her remember her act. Disguised as a prop in a restaurant bill folder on the table beside her, Alexa frequently glances down between punch lines to find her place in the show. And we know it.

This kind of ill preparation along with a stand-up routine that had very few original or creative moments of humour made for a long and mostly dull hour. Yet, there were those audience members giggling away at the jokes Alexa was slinging. Either they hadn’t heard the standards she rhymed off or they’re the type of folks who will laugh at this type of humour time and time again. Hey, I’m tremendously glad they had a good time. But for me, a string of bawdy sit-com-like jokes helped along by a cheat sheet does not a quality Fringe show make.

RATING

For Fringeaholoics – You go to the Fringe to see shows, not acts that would fare well on amateur night at your local comedy club. Alexa has promise as a compelling personality on stage – perhaps she’ll come back again when her talent has matured. SKIP IT

For light Fingers – The show delivers mindless humour that goes down as easy as watching a network sit com. If this is your thing– then perhaps you’ll be amongst those laughing in the audience. MAYBE SEE IT

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