When: Fri., Sept. 13, 7 p.m., Sat., Sept. 14, 7 p.m. and Sun., Sept. 15, 7 p.m. 2013
The apes have always been strong contenders for the most entertaining species, and the latest addition to the line—the hairless ones—have only upped the ante. But given a number of their recent pratfalls, the question is now open for debate: Are the monkeys of the modern world evolving upward, or in some other direction?
Jan Burger, Donovan Zimmerman and the usual army of puppeteers explore this issue in their 14th annual summer pageant. A "Dance of Domestication" featuring a cast of goats, chickens—and trilobites—"looks at what it means to be domesticated, and how we domesticate ourselves," says Zimmerman.
But there's a change in the orchestra pit, since Jonathan Byrd and musicians affiliated with the Afropop group Kaira Ba are on tour during this summer's production. Ari Picker of Lost in the Trees leads the new band. "I've watched Ari grow up since he was young," Zimmerman says. "His music has a deep emotional resonance that I wanted to explore, tap into and share."
"As we look at the themes of evolution and human nature," he concludes, "we're looking at how humanity struggles with itself—its emphaticness and its endless questioning." —Byron Woods