By Bob Shuman

My Name Is Gideon—I’m Probably Going to Die Eventually is a traveling one-man magic act–with songs and stories. The evening, which closed at the Rattlestick on December 11,  is equal parts hippie medicine show–the music may remind of a Cat Stevens album–and German gothic tale.  Gideon Irving is the too-talented banjo-picking and harmonica-playing (sometimes both at the same time) cousin or uncle whom families send their kids to visit during holidays, while dinner is being prepared.  Sometimes these kinds of creatives get locked in the basement. Lately, they’ve caught grief from politicians for moving back home after college graduation—but it usually doesn’t stop their ingenuity.  Gideon’s opening song is actually one that was written by a five-year-old friend, Bella, called “Sea Lion Cow,” who, like the soloist himself, is also precocious. Gideon talks about his mother’s running away to the circus, grandmother’s chocolate chip cookies (they’re excellent), his brother’s absurdist disability, and his first girlfriend—interspersed with site-specific gags and tricks.  The imaginary carnival has been written largely to entertain new-found acquaintances, who have put the author up during his world travels over the past nine years. This home circus, or form of Jewish musicale, is inventive and showcases a talented artist who has taken production into his own hands. Theater goes on, even in inhospitable economic times and even if the audience is only a handful of people. Gideon proves that artistic types don’t need to be discovered or even be locked up in a basement—the urge to create happens everywhere and can’t be stopped.  In fact, it’s not too late to see Gideon–don’t be surprised to find the latest iteration of his show in your own living room.

Visit Gideon Irving’s Web site:

Press: Glenna Freedman

© 2016  by Bob Shuman.  All rights reserved.

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