One part circus, one part science: Air Play hits the stage April 28

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April 12, 2018

Air Play KitesThe sum of the parts of “Air Play” seem like an unlikely combination.

Mix one part circus with one part science. Toss in a little street theater performance art and sculptural artistry.

Add in some cool visuals (flying umbrellas, larger-than-life balloons, giant kites and a snow globe) and – voila – you get “Air Play,” which will be performed at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. Saturday, April 28, at Escher Auditorium, Benedicta Arts Center, College of Saint Benedict, as part of the Fine Arts Series at the CSB and Saint John’s University.

Both shows are geared to the entire family. The 2 p.m. performance will be intentionally structured to be sensory friendly.

The husband-wife team of Seth Bloom and Christina Gelsone (known as the Acrobuffos) wrote, created and star in “Air Play,” which is a visual poem using no words. It lives on the edge of definition: part comedy, part sculpture, part circus and part theater.

In collaboration with renowned air sculptor Daniel Wurtzel, “Air Play” was devised through years of experimentation with simple materials, movement and technology.

It tells the story of two siblings journeying through a surreal world, transforming ordinary objects into uncommon beauty. Fabrics dance in the wind, balloons have a mind of their own, confetti turns into the night sky and an enormous canopy of hovering silk forever alters their future.

“‘Air Play’ holds the whole audience in the palm of its outstretched hand. (It’s) a winning combination of visually stunning sculptures and cheeky but heartfelt storytelling that keeps both adults and children enthralled,” wrote the British Theater Guide.

Air Play will also be in residence April 26-28 at CSB and SJU. The duo will hold “The Secrets Of Clowning” workshop open to the public (ages 13 and up) at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 26, at the Helgeson Dance Studio, BAC, CSB.

To register for the workshop, call the Benedicta Arts Center Box Office at 320-363-5777 starting Monday, April 16.

Air Play will also work with theater students from CSB and SJU while on campus.

Tickets for the performance are $24 for adults, $21 for seniors, $17 for CSB/SJU faculty and staff, $15 for youth and students and $10 for CSB and SJU students. The event is sponsored in part by Bernick’s, Thomsens Garden Center and Plaza Park Bank.

For tickets, call the Benedicta Arts Center Box Office at 320-363-5777 or order online.

The activity is made possible in part by the voters of Minnesota through a Minnesota State Arts Board Operating Support grant, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.