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Larry Litt

The Brain
Einstein's brain is removed in "The Brain," a new puppet theater work by Inkfish which explores the life, science, and mind of Albert Einstein, presented by The Club at La MaMa, NYC, April 18 to 27, 2008. Alissa Mello directs. Puppeteer: Brian Snapp.

An Inkfish Production
Directed by Alissa Mello
Puppet and Set Design by Michale Kelly
The Club at La Mama ETC
74A East 4th St. NYC
Reviewed April 18, 2008

I wish I had learned Einsteinian physics from Inkfish, the renowned dynamic duo performance artists Alissa Mello and Michael Kelly. In The Brain, their extremely theatrical methods use wildly diverse mixed media to explain the theory of relativity in a way any theatergoer can recognize. Inkfish provides science education through amazingly skilled and innovative video and puppetry theater arts.

Like education, the plot is so large and all encompassing that we know it's in there, somewhere. Inkfish's forte is their technique for imparting the dynamic information. Kelly's lifelike toy theaters, hidden in and appropriately revealed in clocks, cabinets and luggage of every type, reveal very important scenes in Einstein's life. Some are very straight laced, while others are witty and downright hysterical. Every man's life has humor, Einstein is no exception.

Video is uniquely used to amplify Einstein's theories. You'll never wonder about relativity again.

The global challenge in The Brain is Albert Einstein's message of caution to an angry political world. He gifted science new knowledge which in turn led to horrific consequences. Einstein spent most of his adult life warning the world that mankind is in peril of complete destruction if peaceful resolutions to national and international conflicts can't be realized before some nuclear armed nation sends its atomic or hydrogen bomb to annihilate the other. One nation already did that. It has yet to pay the reciprocal price.

The Brain owes much to the somber, dedicated delivery of men in white lab coats. Blaine Hicklin, Jeff Nash, Brian Snapp and Michael Parducci add believable mood and place to the experience. Joemca's music and sound design kept the action on a roll throughout Einstein's life.

Einstein was a harbinger and messenger of a new way of thinking. He couldn't have foreseen how his theorems would change the world forever. Inkfish knows how to relay his messages. This production should be seen by all who love theater, science and peace.


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