Michael Moschen | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

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Michael Moschen

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This brilliant artist is mime, musician, clown, and athlete--a stage illusionist whose magic is based entirely on his own physical skill. Just as Cirque du Soleil (for whom Moschen has staged routines) transformed the circus tradition into performance art, Moschen has reclaimed juggling from vaudeville corniness, reinventing it as exquisite visual theater. He doesn't simply balance his spheres, illuminated hoops, and flaming torches; he imbues them with a life of their own, partnering them balletically or guiding them as if by telekinesis and focusing our attention on the geometric images and rhythmic sounds these objects generate in motion. Combining physics, aesthetics, showbiz savvy, and droll deadpan humor, his act is beautiful, breathtaking, and just plain fun. In the past this New England-based soloist has made appearances at Navy Pier's Skyline Stage and the Chicago Theatre, but this time around he's appearing in the intimate 130-seat Actors Gymnasium in Evanston (a second performance has been added due to ticket demand). His shows will be complemented by a master class Wednesday evening, October 23; call the theater for more information. Actors Gymnasium, Noyes Cultural Arts Center, 927 Noyes, Evanston, 847-328-2795. October 22 and 24: Tuesday and Thursday, 7:30 PM. $25.

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