March 8, 2013

Theater of Awesome joins Freeport scene

By Matt Byrne mbyrne@pressherald.com
Staff Writer

(Continued from page 1)

click image to enlarge

Brothers Matt and Jason Tardy pose for a portrait at the Theater of Awesome on Depot Street in Freeport Thursday, March 7, 2013. The brothers will kick off their new physical comedy routine called "AudioBody" Friday night, March 8.

Gabe Souza/Staff Photographer

click image to enlarge

Matt Tardy runs wiring along the ceiling behind the stage at the Theater of Awesome on Depot Street in Freeport Thursday, March 7, 2013. Matt and his brother, Jason will kick off their new physical comedy routine called "AudioBody" Friday night, March 8.

Gabe Souza/Staff Photographer

Video clip: "We Are AudioBody"

Yet neither brother possesses any engineering training, or for that matter, a college education. Many of their techniques for device construction, computer programming and wiring have been gleaned from a vibrant online community of like-minded tinkerers.

"We have a degree in YouTube," Jason Tardy joked. "We went out and sought that knowledge ourselves."

However, their core skills -- comedy, stage craft, performance techniques -- were handed down from others in a traditional apprenticeship.

Since they were young teens, both Tardy brothers have performed with Michael Miclon, who for 14 years operated the Oddfellow Theater in Buckfield, an Oxford County town north of Lewiston. Miclon is a seasoned vaudevillian who hosted a local variety show, "The Early Evening Show."

Miclon took the Tardy boys under his wing, allowing them to travel with him, meet more experienced performers and learn the craft.

In exchange, they helped Miclon around his property, sometimes stacking firewood or painting a deck.

Within a short time they were regulars in his act.

"In the second year, I was pulling them full-time into the shows," Miclon said Thursday.

While Miclon once provided the forum for creativity to the young pair, the 45-year-old mentor will now be a guest in his students' space, bringing his show to Freeport.

Jason Tardy said that while he and his brother reformulate their schedules, they will continue to take their show on the road at times, allowing other performers to rent the theater in their stead.

"I think they're going to do amazing things," Miclon said. "I can't wait to see what their version of a theater looks like."

Staff Writer Matt Byrne can be contacted at: 791-6303 or at:

mbyrne@mainetoday.com

 

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