Countermeasure: 14 Characters
Edinburgh Fringe Festival
There are thousands of different shows at the Edinburgh Fringe festival. However, there are very few shows where the audience is moved from delighted laughter to genuine tears in the course of a song.
Countermeasure: 14 Characters is a gem of a show, featuring some of Canada’s strongest a cappella talent. The songs include clever arrangements to several popular songs, as well as original music inspired by Jazz standards. The group is seamless in its transition between musical styles, and the songs chosen for the concert are punctuated with clever dialogue that allows the audience to feel a closeness with several of the singers.
Each member of Countermeasure is given a chance to shine, and several of the voices are outstanding. In particular, John-Michael Erlendson (who displays a stunning ability to beatbox that segues beautifully into lyrical singing during an all-male ballad), Gianna Antonacci (whose rap solo is both hilarious and adept), and Aaron Jensen (who not only has a wonderful voice, but who, we learn, arranged all of the songs in the concert).
This was a stunning hour of world-class a cappella music. If singing at the Edinburgh Fringe were an Olympic sport, Countermeasure would be a hands-down gold medal winner.