Adam Bailey is on Fire at the Edmonton Fringe Festival

Adam Bailey is on Fire at the Edmonton Fringe Festival. Interview With J on July 29, 2015 for

Describe your show in five words.

Fag Takes on Hell: Wins? Featured Image -- 224

Okay, now that we’re intrigued… what’s the longer description?

It’s a surprisingly funny coming of age story that focuses on the effects of a strict religious upbringing in a person who is gay, based on my own experience as a minister’s son in an evangelical church. I felt in the modern climate of gay rights vs religious rights it was important to tell a story that reminds people that these sectors often overlap, within families and individuals, and explore the results this can lead to.

Your show ‘promises not to pull any punches or be sentimental’ – why was that important to you in creating Adam Bailey is on Fire?

Coming to terms with religion and trying to find a place in gay culture is a huge issue for many LGBT people, and I don’t think the PG version of being gay that we see weekly on Modern Family is helpful to everybody (although that show is hilarious). I researched a lot of other people’s experience while working on dramatizing my own in order to decide the best way of approaching the subject. In the end I’m a firm believer that “Daylight makes the best disinfectant”. So the show deals with some of the grittier elements of gay-culture as well as the church, we see the distance this struggle creates within families, we get to peek inside bathhouses and sex-parties as well as bible-studies and mission work. There’s a connection between a repressive upbringing and some of the high risk behavior seen in the gay-community, if you look at the statistics gays with religious upbringings are much more likely to get involved with drugs and higher risk sex than those with supportive backgrounds. Its time we took a look at that.

Adam Bailey is on Fire was developed with the assistance of Factory Theatre. How did the company contribute to the development process?

I want my work to delight and provoke thought, and I always want humour to be present. But even with the best intentions autobiographical one-person shows based on potentially heavy subject matter can be risky; audience members do not want to pay to watch your therapy session. Regardless of money, audience give you their time and your responsibility is to them. Having high-level professionals help with the show was important to me to ensure the best quality product considering the nature of what I wanted to create and Factory Theatre did not disappoint. I got to work directly with Artistic Director Nina Lee-Aquino, who had several different actors perform my one-person show for me, a rare treat in the world of one-person shows. This allowed me to separate the play form my life and see it from an audience perspective. I am extremely thankful for the opportunity, it took my writing to the next level and I am confident that audiences are getting a great experience because of this.

You’ve been a performer in Toronto’s cabaret scene and host of stand up and burlesque shows as well as playing characters in various shows, but this is an autobiographical piece. How is preparation for an autobiographical show different than for cabaret?

Cabaret work teaches you how to keep things moving, the audience needs to be constantly entertained. The lessons in pacing I learned in cabarets are very evident in this show, which the CBC called “lively” while the story “flies by like a church service on speed”. This show is a real work-out by comparison to some of the cabarets I’ve done simple because its just me up there, but the confidence and whimsy that I have learned in years of doing cabaret are certainly both in the show. There’s a really fun game-show sequence in the piece that is clearly influence by my work in sketch, and I think that people will be nicely surprised by how active this one-man show is.

Anything else you want audiences to know about the show?

Bring Kleenex just in case. Yes, it’s funny but I’ve also touched some heart strings.

Bonus question: Any names you want to drop who have been involved in your show (Edmonton arts people or otherwise)?

Nigel Shawn Williams who’s a national treasure works at the Factory and was able to see me do a reading of the show and he loved it, which had me on Cloud 9. My director Matt White is the General Manager at Necessary Angel, and so has worked closely with Canada’s top solo artist Daniel MacIvor. Unfortunately, I can’t speak to an Edmonton connection as it will be my first time in your city but everything I’ve seen that’s toured out of Edmonton has been great and I know that you have a vibrant theatre community that I’m eager to connect with during my stay. Happy Fringeing everybody!

The 34th Edmonton International Fringe Theatre Festival is August 13 – 23. Get your tickets at starting August 4.

Adam Bailey is on Fire plays at The Yardbird Suite (11 Tommy Banks Way) August 14, 16, 17, 19, 21, 23


We’re Kicking off Our Fundraiser for Adam Bailey is On Fire!

God, Gays and Growing Up the Son of a Preacher Man: Adam Bailey is On Fire is Going on The Road!

Couple That Challenged Ban On Same-Sex Marriages Wed In California

Being Gay and Christian means having to answer a question most people don’t want to ask: Am I Going to Hell?

Adam Bailey, a homosexual raised the son of an evangelical music minister, tries to answer this question in his humorous and insightful new play, directed by Matt White, which will have its World Premier at the Winnipeg Fringe before traveling to the Edmonton Fringe later this summer.

Travel is costly, but this story is an important one and we hope you can help. One of the gifts we can give if you choose to assist us is the gift of a video prayer, performed by Adam Bailey, and sent to you as well as posted on this site. We’re sure that this will be a favourite! You can also get invited to a gay pizza party at Adam Bailey’s house where he will show you his wedding photos.

Just click on the link (HERE) to get to the FWYC site to make a donation.

The struggle between faith and sexual identity is often a private one, hopefully by making it a bit more public we can help some LGBT people feel less alone. We hope you are able to give generously.

Last Chance to See The Critically Acclaimed Show

Our Cast

Best of Fringe Winner, The Assassination of Robert Ford: Dirty Little Coward has one Last Show Sunday July 27th at 3pm, and then it Must Close!

Find Out The Amazing True Story of The Assassin of Jesse James and Ponder its Eerie Similarities to Life Today. Be entertained by what the Charlebois Post called, “A tight show with passion, wit, and challenging ideals.”

Tickets Can Be bought Here.

All of Our Reviews Are Here.

But Don’t Miss Out! Once The Show is Over the Mutton Chops Get Shaved!


Our CastThe Assassination of Robert Ford: Dirty Little Coward was a critically acclaimed show at this year’s Toronto Fringe, garnering a spot on several must see lists as well as a 4 Star review from the Torontoist and the title Best of Fringe which it shares with 8 shows. Each Best of Fringe Show enjoys an extension of its run at the prestigious Toronto Centre for The Arts, giving fans an extra chance to see shows that they might have missed at the Fringe Festival.

We’ve added three more performances!

July 17, 2014 9:00 pm
July 22, 2014 7:00 pm
July 27, 2014 3:00 pm

Tickets Are Available Here.

Newborn Theatre Calls it: “Mesmerizing and Gripping”

Mooney on Theatre Says: “It’s terrific!” and “A Must See”

Now Magazine Says: “Strong performances, and wink-and-nod references to a certain present-day mayor, keep the storytelling intriguing.”

The Charlebois Post Calls it: “A tight show with passion, wit, and challenging ideals.”

Check out Our Full Reviews Here.


Eight Questions About the Toronto Fringe

Exit Upstage

The Toronto Fringe is in full swing of what is by all accounts a tremendous year for the festival. So while we’re right in the thick of it, let’s start a discussion about things that have come up this year so we can help make an even better festival next year.

1.  Are Ticket Sales Really Up? Buy how much? What does this translate to for average artist return? What was the average sell-through? Was sell-through more-or-less even across timeslots and venues?

There was concern that the move to 100% advance sales availability would hurt the Fringe, as patrons who didn’t get to see their top show would give up rather than come down to the festival to find out what else to see. I’ve always said that concern was unfounded as other festivals that moved that way actually reported massive sales increases.

Anecdotally, ticket sales and sell-outs at the…

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Tickets Go On Sale For The Assassination of Robert Ford: Dirty Little Coward!

The Cast of The Assassination of Robert Ford: Dirty Little Coward
The Cast of The Assassination of Robert Ford: Dirty Little Coward

You can purchase your tickets to The Assassination of Robert Ford: Dirty Little Coward, Today!

Please Note:

This year all tickets for the Toronto Fringe will be available in advance. 

This is different than previous years when 50% of tickets were held for the door.This will mean less  time standing in lines and more time seeing shows for the organized Fringer, but for the first time ever at the Toronto Fringe shows can sell out fully in advance! The only way to avoid disappointment for certain is to pre-purchase your tickets.

Don’t be caught off-guard, start planning your Fringe now!

ROB FORD IS DEAD! Meet his killer at the Toronto Fringe.

The Cast of The Assassination of Robert Ford: Dirty Little Coward

A real case of believe it or not that will have fact checkers scratching their heads when they realize that this historic tale of bloodshed is an eerie parable for the state of our city today, and the names don’t even have to be changed.

Written and Directed by Adam Bailey with original music composed and performed by Joel Lightman.

Tyler Seguin performs as a side show host,  introducing the audience to the man who shot and killed Robert Ford; Geoff Mays.

The Assassination of Robert Ford: Dirty Little Coward will take place during The Toronto Fringe, July 2 -14.

Tickets Go on Sale June 17th!