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Image courtesy of the Ottawa Fringe Festival

Fringe Review: …like nobody’s watching

By Colin Noden on June 16, 2018

Image courtesy of the Ottawa Fringe Festival

…like nobody’s watching
by Jake Simonds

60 min / Comedy, Drama / PG

The message of this play is “You’re not Tom Hanks!” The beauty of this play is watching Jake Simonds work his way to epiphany.

I loved this show because of Jake’s communication skills. You know how there are some people who are just interesting to listen to? And almost as interesting to watch? So, it’s ironic that this is a play about loneliness. Or is it? He gives it away near the end.

I’ll let you watch the play and see if you hear it. But first you need to know some details about the play which will determine if it is for you.

There are a lot of movie references. What the program notes call survival-in-isolation movies: Castaway is a big reference in this play. Gravity, with Sandra Bullock and George Clooney; The Big Short; The Martian; Home Alone; Caddyshack… I’m sure I missed some. I haven’t seen most of them, but I still liked the play. I began to understand that these movie references were just props. The same as the talking basketball, the rope, water bottle, and chair. But if you are reading this and thinking, “I’m a Fringe Theatre patron, and this guy is talking about Hollywood Movies???” Then your critical mind is going to get in the way of exploring the message. That’s OK. It’s a big festival.

The play definitely looks and sounds Fringe. Very minimal set, right down to the loin cloth. One actor. Intelligent use of props. Immersive presentation. And a thought provoking conclusion. All Triple-A Fringe material… for the price of a movie.

…like nobody’s watching by Jake Simonds is playing at La Nouvelle Scène Studio A (333 King Edward Ave) until Saturday June 23, 2018. Tickets cost $12. Visit for the schedule and box office info. Read more reviews at