Concert Review: Slava's Snowshow

Tel Aviv Opera House, September 14

September 17, 2011 22:09
1 minute read.

Snowshow 311. (photo credit: Veronique Vial)


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Perhaps the loveliest moment in the Snowshow is when Slava lugs a huge suitcase and a coat-rack onto the stage. From it he takes first three little white balloons that disappear into the flies overhead as soon as he releases them. Then he removes a woman’s overcoat and hat from the suitcase and hangs them on the coat-rack.

Then, taking tiny steps as he has all along, his oversize nubby yellow boiler- suit hanging around him, he shuffles in his fluffy red slippers over to the rack where the coat and the hat become a woman with whom he has a dialogue, into whom he nestles. It’s both funny and touching.

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That is the essence of Slava Polunin’s world famous clown show, this juxtaposition of the unexpected and the almost ordinary that makes us laugh and touches our hearts. He’s not alone on stage. With him he has a talented cast clad either like him in yellow boiler suits or long green shabby coats with raggedy hats that have flaps on either side, like oversize goat’s ears.

Their physical mastery is absolute, their virtuosity breath-taking. They play with us, making us their willing accomplices and to say how is to spoil the fun, the delight and the enchantment With him in Tel Aviv is also violinist Gideon Kremer and his Kremerata Baltica orchestra in a unique collaboration of concert and Snowshow. The music ranges from Vivaldi to Vangelis.

Kremer is a great artist and at one time, the orchestra even cavorts, but nonetheless there’s a little too much orchestra for the Snowshow, which upsets its balance.

For the dramatic finale, however, the orchestra has left the stage and so the majesty and breadth of Polunin’s artistry can sweep us unimpeded.

If your children are around eight or nine, take them along. You’ll all go home with unforgettable visions.

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