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Puppet Love

Flesh and Blooders is a new play about puppets, but it’s more Being John Malkovich than Avenue Q — an eccentric love triangle in which egos clash, mad puppets attack, and amnesiacs and runaway brides find common ground. Written by Cynthia Joyce Clay and recently opened as the first full-scale production at Clay’s new theater, Storycrafter Studio (7329 Collins Ave., Miami Beach), Flesh and Blooders is an American spin on the traditional Bollywood romance. A young stockbroker with amnesia and an Indian bride fleeing an arranged marriage converge at the studio of Judy Punchinello, a tyrannical puppeteer under contract for a large-scale Hollywood/Bollywood coproduction. Flesh and Blooders is filled with surreal moments, most of them of a piece with the Bollywood tradition of dance theater, which Clay reminds us is different from American musical theater. “The actors do not suddenly stop and sing and dance,” she says. “Dances are reserved for those moments when a character must attend to their inner, powerful feelings. The ensemble at Storycrafter has studied Indian videos to learn the accents and dance moves, and I have studied hundreds of Indian films and read up on India’s ancient dance theater. All of this was challenging, and the most fun imaginable.”
Aug. 8-11, 2013


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