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Capsule Reviews

Our critics weigh in on local theater

Touching Ed Sullivan This is an odd bit of puppet theater. The one-act story plays out like a whimsical nightmare about the insidious dangers of media. Written and directed by Jenny Campbell and Yelena Zhelezov, the show features a strange character named Dr. Oedipson (David Barr) who tries to keep a handful of puppet-beings alive by using his latest invention, the Reverse Entroposcope. Somehow, this invention requires that they watch TV or listen to the radio all the time. The plot is often hard to follow (there's no dialogue), but the weird puppets and creepy sound effects (moaning, cool music, snippets from old TV shows) are often enough to make this performance compelling. Blake Minor's shadowy lights add to the overall gloomy feel, though sometimes the stage is a little too dark for the audience to see the puppets well. And the puppeteers, who start out the show in a sort of choreographed dance that is bizarrely charming, are so peculiarly interesting in their white clothes and white makeup that they sometimes take attention away from the puppets they're manipulating. Taken as a whole, Touching Ed Sullivan is a worthwhile hour of experimental theater. Through January 28 at DiverseWorks, 1117 East Fwy., 713-335-3443.

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