While most people have to pay for therapy sessions with their own money, Rogue Festival performer Peter Aguero has found a way to go through a therapy session and have others pay him for it. He does this through his one-man show “Daddy Issues.”
The one-hour performance is a slightly jointed connection of stories of how Aguero’s father never loved him and how that manifested itself in a battle with depression by the performer. His father’s efforts to “make him a man” took Aguero to the jagged edge of suicide.
Aguero has a flair for tossing in tiny details such as how Pizza Hut puts real bacon bits on their salad bar or how his father smoked Marlboro Reds. If he ever turns his story into a book, he will need a good editor as his structure has a few major problems.
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Early in his show, Aguero tells a long story about an encounter with a hitchhiker. After that tale is told, he accents it with “that didn’t happen.” He uses the phrase again later in his show.
The only thing that makes Aguero’s stories interesting is if the audience believes they are buried deep under a pile of truth. But, establishing early that he will mix fiction with his fact is a verbal grenade that could go off anytime during his show That makes it difficult to accept any of his story as fact which in turn takes away for the inherent power of his words.
Aguero needs his stories to be as compelling as possible because his presentation is on the verge of being unappealing. Every line of dialogue is delivered at the kind of rapid pace that suggests he would prefer to be done with the performance and out the door. His delivery is so fast, Aguero often stumbles over his own words, not a good trait for a storyteller.
He tells his story in a monotone delivery, only occasionally raising his voice. The general lack of inflections and misplaced pauses make the show sound like it is being read by someone who didn’t get a chance to check over the script before the show.
As for his subject matter, it might be therapeutic to Aguero but as delivered it is fitting of something Aguero’s father once told him: it’s easy to like him but hard to love him.
Please note the show is rated PG-13 for language.
- 5 p.m. March 4, 9:30 p.m. March 5, 8 p.m. March 9, 5 p.m. March 11
- Vista Theater, 1296 North Wishon Ave.