'Snowflake' showcases one-man tour de force

performer on skisFrom creating illusions to making music to dancing “The Nutcracker” on skis, the one-man show “Snowflake” will put performer Gale LaJoye’s many talents to work at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Jan. 27, in Waterman Theatre.

“Snowflake” has earned rave reviews across the globe. “This is the best you’ll see anywhere,” a Canadian Broadcasting Corporation review noted. “This performance is impeccable, it is so effortless and it really is about the way in which the imagination can transform the simplest thing into things of wonder.”

The Asahi Evening News in Japan dubbed it “[o]ne of America’s finest.” The Courier Mail is Australia called the performance “[a]stonishing ... a theatrical trip well worth taking.” Added the Richmond-Times Dispatch: “No words are uttered in ‘Snowflake’ ... but the sounds of joy are immense.”

The plot finds LaJoye’s character trying to teach a child how to turn sorrow into joy. Along the way, the performer uses the magic of illusion to seemingly float in mid-air, breathe life into toys, create imaginative music and even perform the ski-wearing ballet.

LaJoye switched his career path from pre-law to theatre in college, and developed a reputation for playing complex characters that communicate non-verbally and with physical humor. His work also factors in his experience with the Ringling Brothers Barnum and Bailey Circus, pantomime and the Japanese art of Kabuki.

But his career was almost cut short by a car accident in 1979 when doctors advised him he would not walk again. During the resulting recovery, LaJoye says he rebuilt his body while using humor to heal his mind and soul.

Having regained his performing abilities by the early 1980s, LaJoye began touring the world again. He debuted “Snowflake” in 1990 and has since taken it through North America, Asia, South America, Australia and Europe.

The production is a scholarship fundraiser presented by the SUNY Oswego theatre department.

Tickets for the SUNY Oswego performance of “Snowflake” cost $12 for adults; $10 for seniors and students; $7 for SUNY Oswego students.

For more information or reservations, contact Tyler box office at 312-2141 or tickets@oswego.edu.

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(Posted: Jan 04, 2006)