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Over a decade ago, I cast James Sundquist for my directing training final project at Berkeley Rep. He solo played multiple characters in an Angels in America scene. Afterwards the instructor, a well known bay area casting agent and director, asked "Was he a diva to work with? Usually actors with his talent are."
No, James is humble offstage. His solo shows have won Best of Fringe.
He performed last night for first time since pandemic in Up For Air // Flying Actor Studio at Stage Werx. The lights are cool LEDs. He's sweating because he poured himself into the audience. I love this.
In an entertainment model of solo theatre, our job is to give everything we have to the audience. Non-religious kenosis "self-emptying". Very different transaction from like drama therapy or self-revelatory theatre.
And oh, his physical theatre was hilarious last night! Keep an eye on this talent.
James Sundquist is a force of nature. His performance Mingalaba is full of explosive energy, disciplined craft, and shrewd observation. His command of the moment hits one in the gut with resonance and truth. Mr. Sundquist's creation of vivid mood, musicality, and image is what is missing in most theatre, especially the mysterious worlds of Neo-classic clowning and mime. James stands out among a new generation of physical theatre/clown/mime performers who are disciples of disciplined madness. Every audience will demand to see more of this very talented man's work. James Sundquist is unique!
Very creative, full throttle the whole time. James is a great solo performer who's able to switch between roles seamlessly and is able to carry the whole stage and the whole audience through strange and funny scenes without missing a beat.
James is on fire! The energy pouring out of him is contagious, his characters both thunderous & subtle. Thank you!
James Sundquist takes risks nobody else has the guts to take. He takes the physical virtuosity of clowning, the goofy voices and characters of puppetry, and the rage and euphoria of this very moments -- and mixes them together in a web of story which is hilarious, chilling, and utterly galvanizing.
James’ physical, pantomiming commitment is unparalleled in this intriguing and unique show. Story after intriguing story I found myself consumed in his world, wondering what would happen next. Thoughtful, surprising, shocking, and hilarious. I enjoyed and was captivated every minute.
A cascade of characters, wild with action scenes. You can't take your eyes off the act because you have no idea what's coming next, or who the f**k will be getting kicked down the imaginary stairs or arrested for murder. You can imagine. James Sundquist!
Hilarious character work within this outstanding solo performance! There was not a single dull moment throughout the entire show. A must see!
Enthralling, poetic, manic, skilled, and beautiful. I loved every moment.
Allow yourself to be transported to strange worlds as beguiling as TV, but without all the guilt of a Netflix binge. This is a show for someone who wants to feel something, but you’re not sure what, and to experience a madness that can only be described as reminiscent of Alex DeLarge from A Clockwork Orange. Check out the next showing of MINGALABA TONIGHT! at 9:30 pm in the Fellowship Hall.
Great show! This piece is fast paced, high energy and keeps you engaged the whole time. I found a lot of it really funny. And kind of dark. And sometimes just really bizarre. Overall a really fun ride. Highly recommended.
MINGALABA reeks of the pure enthralling and chaotic energy of mindlessly clicking through TV channels on a humid summer afternoon. There’s nothing mindless about Sundquist’s performance though, as he commands you through a series of winding and awe-inspiring sketches and tidbits that cause everything you think you’ve learned about the show to come crashing down at your feet. All killer, no filler.
Expeditious Intent is instantly engaging and hilarious while also being deeply emotional and relatable. An impressive, vivid, one man show!
AEON reviews from upcoming SF Fringe 2019
MINGALABA reviews from SF Fringe 2018
EXPEDITIOUS INTENT reviews from SF Fringe 2017
CARL AND BEATRICE LIVE AT THE EXIT reviews from SF Fringe 2016