Tuesday , February 27 2024
In which Timmy creates the Universe.

Theater Review: Creation: A Clown Show

Creation: A Clown Show is just that: Lucas Caleb Rooney, playing a childlike, imaginative naïf, clowns through a depiction of the Book of Genesis's creation story using props, lights, sounds (many emitted by himself), and music.  The music is played sparingly by Peter Friedland and Javen Tanner like an orchestral Vladimir and Estragon on drums, bass guitar and ukelele. Unlike Harpo Marx, Rooney's clown also speaks – more than the mostly silent Mr. Bean, but less than the hyperkinetic Pee Wee Herman – in a magnificently facile voice that he uses almost like a musical instrument.
creation
Antically he resembles some of the above-mentioned clowns of the past, but he has his own teddy-bearish clown persona- mugging, banging about, alternately asking the musicians for help and bossing them around. In the process, he charms and entertains the adults in the audience at least as much as the children. As the text is read by a booming, sometimes exasperated offstage voice (Samuel Stricklen), our hero must by hook or by crook (or by hammer and nail) demonstrate the events of the six days of Creation. The point is not whether he succeeds but how he uses his imagination to cast off his initial shyness and fear to become a crowd-pleasing storyteller.

Underneath, it's a tale of growing up a little and finding one's voice a lot. On the surface – and what a delightful, madcap surface – it's a smartly paced, inventive, musical, altogether first-rate family entertainment.

Creation: A Clown Show runs through Sept. 10, 2006, at Theater Five, 311 W. 43 St., NYC.

(Photo by Jill Jones)

About Jon Sobel

Jon Sobel is Publisher and Executive Editor of Blogcritics as well as lead editor of the Culture & Society section. As a writer he contributes most often to Music, where he covers classical music (old and new) and other genres, and Culture, where he reviews NYC theater. Through Oren Hope Marketing and Copywriting at http://www.orenhope.com/ you can hire him to write or edit whatever marketing or journalistic materials your heart desires. Jon also writes the blog Park Odyssey at http://parkodyssey.blogspot.com/ where he is on a mission to visit every park in New York City. He has also been a part-time working musician, including as lead singer, songwriter, and bass player for Whisperado.

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