By Drea DiCarlo
“The Man in my Beard” is about just that! Frank, a janitor at S.M.A.L.L. (Scientific Miniaturization And Lessification Laboratory) is accidentally shrunk and finds himself living in the long beard of Al. Frank has survived by fashioning a hammock in Al’s soul patch and feeding off crumbs stuck in his beard. In the more than year that he lives there, Frank helps Al navigate falling in love, changing jobs, getting drunk, and going viral online, meanwhile missing his wife who has no idea what has happened to him. Frank is insightful and rooting for the awkward Al. They live in strange symbiosis until the evil scientist and his assistants back at S.M.A.L.L. catch on to Frank’s whereabouts and set off to catch and destroy him. This coincides with Al becoming aware of Frank’s existence and they work together to protect each other.
Frank and Al share a stage, Al perched on a platform to with huge protruding beard hairs. They often move in tandem; as Al flails around Frank is stuck along for the ride. Old-school screen projections are used and, while they’re a little goofy, they fit right in with the tone of the show. Songs are scattered throughout the show, with Al on acoustic guitar, and he and Frank both on vocals. By the end of this briskly paced show both Al and Frank come out changed men. This fun and wacky show by Australian playwright Shane Adamczak is brought to life by the talented Bob Linebarger and J.Will Fritz.