Opening

The Magical Puppet Bus Tour

When: Sun., Jan. 20, 8 p.m. 2013

Today, the options for telling a story vary almost as widely as the stories themselves. You can spend millions on a CGI masterpiece like Avatar, but even the most realistic computer-generated character can’t evoke the surreal experience of a puppet show, in which inanimate objects that you can reach out and touch come to life with help from a skilled puppeteer. The Magical Puppet Bus is a joint project: Puerto Rico’s Poncili puppet troupe, which uses fascinating hand and full-body puppets that might feel at home in a Guillermo del Toro film, have joined with New York City’s Jawbone Puppet Theater, featuring active Occupy Wall Street protester Adam Ende and his 5-year-old son, Corn Snake. Their program, including the toy dinosaur skit “Jurassic Justice,” presents serious sociopolitical ideas in a whimsical way, harkening back to the Vietnam protest marionette show at New York’s Electric Circus nightclub. Papier-mâché and felt can seem a little silly on the surface, but the elements of play change the context in a way that promotes discussion.

Stephen Trageser

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