Edmond Chibeau looks at performance and theatre from the avant-garde communication perspective

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Location: Mansfield, Connecticut, United States

Sunday, April 03, 2016

3 Puppet Pieces -1

actor puppeteer: Gavin Cummings
music Gwendolyn Rooker
Studio Theatre UCONN
24 March 2016

The initial entrance by Gavin Cummins, carrying a bright light on a piece of wood, brings us immediately into the piece. He enters through the back of the house muttering to himself, the character seems insane, homeless, ragged  and we feel we are in a dangerous place. The character, Cummins, then mounts the stage and begins the body of the work. He uses shadows well and creates a stage on his chest against which is another shadow puppet.
The voice and intonation of Cummings leave us with a sense of emptiness and loss. It is a false cheer that we sometimes adopt in the face of tragedy that opens the heart of the audience to what is about to take place. There are several astounding images. The work would have been more dense if the spoken words had been a bit richer, although the repetition of the title phrase took on layers of tragic, and forlorn meaning as they were spoken over and over again. 
This performance was a preview and one expects that on opening night the elements of the piece were more tightly woven together.

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