Reviewed by Amanda Callas
The Queen of Bitcoin: The Rise and Fall
is a hilarious, total treasure of a show in the Asylum @ Stephanie Feury Studio Theatre, part of the glorious Hollywood Fringe Festival. The one woman show by Margaux Avedisian shines in the warmth of the intimate, upstairs Art Deco theatre on Melrose near Larchmont. It feels like getting to know someone fascinating at a cozy dinner party. While
The Queen of Bitcoin
may have a special appeal for audiences fascinated with the mysterious, modish world of Silicon Valley startups and cryptocurrency, no knowledge of Bitcoin is at all necessary, and the most intriguing draw is Margaux Avedisian herself.
Avedisian is a genius storyteller who brilliantly and sweetly lampoons herself and others, with a mimic's unerring power of invoking a hundred different voices all by herself. The show begins with hilarious tales of misadventures from her Catholic school childhood in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida and continues with her stumbling post college to find her place, in odd law jobs and the world of fashion. Avedisian is a delightful narrator, lovable and plucky, willing to try anything, plunging into chaotic situations in a heartbeat, eager to learn and salvage what she can.
Her entrance into the world of startups and crypto feels very classic Cinderella, if the Cinderella story happened to involve snowboarding at Sundance and treks to Burning Man. Magical breaks, spontaneous hirings, and random invitations bring Avedisian on her way to working in the brave new world of crypto. Quickly she works hard to establish herself as an entrepreneur, advisor, publicist, and head of company. Just as quickly, companies dissolve in a puff of a smoke, her start up ideas and investor contacts are stolen, and she is repeatedly dismissed and fired, encountering pungent doses of sexism and madcap insanity along the way. Among the show's funniest moments are Avedisian invoking the fratty, arrogant tones of her erstwhile employers and colleagues while they confidently mansplain her things straight out of Alice in Wonderland.
I watched the audience be completely captivated and charmed by Margaux Avedisian, her hilarious stand-up comedy, and her cautionary tale, jewel box of a story. I think we all can't wait to see what she does next.
The encore performance of The Queen of Bitcoin: The Rise and Fall will be at 12 Noon Saturday July 1st at Asylum@Stephanie Feury Studio Theatre, 5636 Melrose Ave., Hollywood.