At In the Heart of the Beast, Bart Buch’s beguiling Kid Enkidu puppet production is a visual feast. Dreamy projections by David T. Steinman and evocative lighting by George Meyers reflect animal and plant life as the center and source of all life. Out of that source comes two men whose bonding suggests homoromantic love. You may even call it a love for the ages.
These two characters are Enkidu the wild man and King Gilgamesh from the ancient Sumerian epic, Gilgamesh. The King represents materialism and Enkidu, the spiritual. The wild one quests for the Beloved Creator of the Natural World. Buch’s narrative includes animal and human puppets manipulated by a seamless ensemble but things get diluted by focusing on too many ideas. Buch has also drawn from the novella The Little Prince and anime filmmaker Miyazaki.
Nonetheless, Kid Enkidu is a transporting work of theater enhanced by Tom Woodling’s improvised electro-acoustical music as inspired by composer Martin Dosh. The enchanting masks were designed by Buch and Blake Love. Buch’s vision is especially resonant in our time of troubling climate change.
Through Feb. 10
In the Heart of the Beast Puppet & Mask Theatre, 1500 Lake St., Mpls.