No Joke

comedy · nojoke · Ages 12+ · United States of America

world premiere
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June 16, 2019 certified reviewer
tagged as: immigration · comedy · instagram · DACA · diversity · change

What I liked

The nuanced performances (shifts in glances that changed the mood of the scene, or subtle actions they took that resulted in big laughs) and how thought provoking it was. I feel I learned something and want to continue having conversations knowing these new perspectives.

Also enjoyed taking photos with the actors in front of their Social Media Photo area (looks like an instagram post, very cute and clever)!

What I didn't like

It was really a fantastically written and executed show, nothing to add here. Wish there were more stories and shenanigans the protagonist could have gotten herself into (perhaps for Fringe 2020…)!

My overall impression

It is rare to see performances that both entertain and enlighten—which is why you won’t want to miss seeing “No Joke.” The play is a deeply thought provoking and compelling exploration of the gray areas of legal and illegal American immigration stories and conflicts. An American Instagram influencer’s (performed by Omilon) obnoxious entitlement and naiveté carries the energy of the show and allows the audience to engage more fully with the story because our ignorance is no match for hers. She speaks with a DACA recipient (Rocabado) whose story will tear at your heartstrings and reveals the frustrations of the American Immigration system even when every rule is followed. The Instagrammer then speaks with a legal Italian immigrant (Tombacco) whose effortless charm and nuanced performance dive into the complexities and implicit resentments faced by immigrants coming in legally. The dialogue flies, and the performance will make your jaw drop and open your heart.

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