The last in our series of in-depth interviews with Fringe fans and faves, we catch up with touring superstars Amica and Dave about catching the Fringe bug, surprising adventures and a van named Vanna White. Read more about Amica and Dave’s take on Fringe-shaped worlds inside our program guide.
For those who are unfamiliar with you, can you describe yourselves in 50 words or less?
Amica: How many words? 50? Oh god, that's already eight! We are two people dedicated to the art of physical comedy. And when I say dedicated, I mean uncannily obsessed! We love traveling, watering our vants, and imagining the inner monologues of cute dogs that we see. And cookies.
Amica: I have lain awake many nights asking myself that same question. They all warned us that Fringing was addictive. Apparently we've caught the bug! I can’t stop!
David: Well...that’s a deep question, and can't really be addressed without answering a question that is even more fundamental to what we do. Why perform? I want to spread joy, and I want people to be drawn into something so deeply that their daily stresses just melt away. Fringing is a super-efficient way to set up a tour, where we can take our work into as many communities as possible. That’s why I fringe.
I heard a rumour that you’ve named your van?
Amica: It's true! We have a white van, who, for obvious reasons, we call "Vanna White." With a bed in the back, and lots of storage space, she's great for touring. She even has her own Facebook page.
With close to five months on the road, that’s a lot of driving!
Amica: It is, but touring in the van gives us time to talk about changes we want to make to our show. We listen to A LOT of podcasts, and I am very lucky to get to stretch out and take a nap in the back while David drives.
What is the best part about touring?
David: I love meeting people from different communities, learning about how similar we are, and also what makes us unique. We also love waking up, after we’ve pulled off to sleep in some scenic park, and just looking out over the landscape.
What has been one of your funniest or favorite Fringe moments?
Amica: We were playing a show once that had a small child in the front row. At one point, the kiddo got loose, got onstage, and started crawling towards me. Without even thinking about it, I dropped to my knees and started crawling towards the child, hoping David would figure out SOMETHING to do. Sure enough, just as the toddler and I were about to touch, the mother grabbed the child by her ankles and dragged her back towards the audience. At the same time, David grabbed me by the ankle and dragged me back to center stage so we could continue the scene. The child and I reached longingly towards each other as our authority figures pulled us away. It was one on my proudest moments of our impulsive improvisation!
David: This answer changes all the time, but right now, I would have to say receiving a standing ovation from our first ever sold out show on the Fringe circuit.
Amica: Oh, and one night in London, we skipped the bar scene with some fringe friends to have an impromptu shadow puppet jam session using spotlights projected onto a nearby church. It was one of our first “fringeships” during the first festival of the summer.
What is your best kept Fringe secret?
Amica: We're secretly friends with our Fringe Rival and Ultimate Nemesis: Jeff Leard! Shhh! Don't tell!
Speaking of friends…are you Fringe-crushing on anyone?
David: Oh man, SO MANY! Most recently, we have both been crushing on the Coldhearts from Brooklyn, NY. Their show Edgar Allan is phenomenal. There are so many beautiful, talented performers that we couldn't name them all.
Amica: It's true! We're practically fringe crush collectors by now. I'm still fringe crushing hard on our puppetry pals, Mind of a Snail (we refer to them as "the crows"). Oh, and of course I am NOT crushing on Jeff Leard. Nope. We are enemies, I swear.
What is the thing you are most looking forward to about fringing this year?
David: One thing?! Aside from presenting our art to people, bringing joy and laughter, meeting new people, connecting with other fringe artists, and traveling to new places…I would have to say the one thing is having surprise adventures.
About Amica & Dave: Co-founded by Amica Hunter and David Cantor, A Little Bit Off began as a theatrical collaboration between two acrobatic clowns dedicated to bringing wonder and laughter to the audiences of the world. Drawing inspiration from the old American vaudevillians, and work of French artist James Thierree, ALBO has grown to produce two fully developed shows with carefully selected themes, hilarious characters, intricate relationships, mind-boggling tricks, and a very quirky, off beat flavor. Their most recent work is a critically acclaimed full length physical comedy show called Beau & Aero featuring two bumbling, incompetent aviators. The show has won five awards, including one for Outstanding Physical Theater. ALBO has performed for audiences all over Europe and the United States, captivating audiences of all languages with their dialogue-free approach to storytelling. To learn more about Amica and David, you can find them on Facebook.