Michelle Mainwaring is a colourful character. I knew going into her one-woman show “That’s What She Said” at the 2018 Windsor-Walkerville Fringe Festival, I would laugh for the entire show – and I wasn’t disappointed. It was a true highlight of the entire festival.
Having seen her previously perform on the Rum Runners Tour earlier this year, I expected bold costumes, some audience interaction and a few props, but on Thursday night we were given the works – she held nothing back – literally – she dove deep into that bra of hers for more props than Mr. Rogers tickle trunk ever held.
Throughout the show, we were treated to a few different women – an American, a Brit and a Scottish lady for example. All of these unique women had a few moments to tell their story (each with their own accent and characteristics). As they made their way through a few stereotypical jokes, I quickly found out that pussy hats are a thing, women absolutely “love” the traditional way of sewing, I need to make sure to keep the bar closed around British ladies, and I should totally avoid small town Scotland unless I’m good with a few ladies looking up my kilt in an effort to see which town I’m from (well, maybe that’s not so bad when I think about it).
Each of the characters was more outrageous than the next and Mainwaring gave it her all, actually sweating by end of it. Even though the show was quickly assembled out of a catch phrase she selected on Facebook, it felt like one of the more honest attempts in the festival. It wasn’t contrived and felt very relaxed and casual as the routine progressed. Costumes mostly revolved around a change of hats performed in a flashy Wonder Woman twirl.
We were also exposed to a funny commercial routine talking about Fringe sponsors which involved Mainwaring digging really deep into her bra and dress for props and signs. Secretly I was hoping she’d whip out a copy of 519 Magazine, but then I’d be wondering exactly where that issue was being held captive.
“That’s What She Said” took Fringers to an entirely different place than the other shows – there was no dance, no theatre, no drama – just a one-woman comedy act that brings out the belly laughs.