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Review of Snowflake at The Children’s Theatre in Minneapolis

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Gale LaJoye in Snowflake, production photos from The Children's Theatre Company

Gale LaJoye in Snowflake, production photos from The Children’s Theatre Company

Quote of the Day:  Gale LaJoye is a master storyteller in the tradition of Buster Keaton and Charlie Chaplin, legends of the silent film era who could make us laugh, cry, and keep us at the edge of our seats without uttering a single word. Peter Brosius, Artistic Director at The Children’s Theatre Company in Minneapolis, MN.

Snowflake lives in what appears to be an abandoned lot, full of trash and broken and discarded objects. He, himself, seems to be abandoned, broken and discarded, and yet, he finds ways to create joy and companionship. A crutch in a box and a coat become a “coat friend” who takes care of him, washing his face, combing his hair, giving him a hug when he’s sad. He turns an old suitcase into a dog and a thrown out puppet into a boy, then, he spends the time trying to cheer up his “boy.” You feel his longing for family and his need for companionship, and a bit of cheer of his own.

Actor Gale LaJoye moves with grace and style. His training as a clown is apparent, and his balance is amazing. He can even do ballet on skis! It was breathtaking.dress

Snowflake is a show that is full of surprises. What will Snowflake do with this bit of trash that just flew over the fence? How will he cheer up his little companion? How on earth can he balance on those skis, on a skateboard, on his toes, pirouetting?

 

With the onskishelp of sound effects, music, even a few magic tricks, LaJoye keeps us watching his every move.

And, according to the press release, this man was once paralyzed. How does he do it? 

 

Snowflake is a quiet and gentle show, appropriate for any age. LaJoye captures your attention and sparks your imagination. As you watch, you understand that the need for connection, to be part of a family, is at the heart of most people. He does what he can with what he’s given, and it is beautiful. The show is maybe a bit long and quiet for the youngest audience members. They might enjoy The Biggest Little House in the Forest a bit more, performed by the extremely talented Autumn Ness. They did this show a couple years ago. You can read my review of this delightful puppet play here.

Snowflake is playing at The Children’s Theatre in Minneapolis, Jan. 13 – Feb. 22, 2015. The Biggest Little House in the Forest is playing Feb. 3 – March 15, 2015. 

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Go. Create. Inspire!

Journaling Prompt:  Can you do ballet? Can you ski? Can you do ballet on skis? What’s the most amazing thing that you can do?

  1. I’m sure his attitude and joyous spirit had a lot to do with his recovery. Awesome he can still perform.

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