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‘Pinot & Augustine’ at Happenstance Theater at Hylton Performing Arts Center by Flora Scott

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The Golden Age of the Circus was from 1870-1950. During those years is when the Circus swelled into the largest show-biz industry in the world. It wasn’t just for the kids in those days. The acts were novel and fascinating. Happenstance Theater‘s  Pinot and Augustine are a clown duo that hark back to the days when Circus was everything.

Happenstance Theater Artistic co-Directors Mark Jaster and Sabrina Mandell. Photo courtesy of Hylton Performing Arts Center.

Happenstance Theater Artistic co-Directors Mark Jaster and Sabrina Mandell. Photo courtesy of Hylton Performing Arts Center.

Pinot is a Whitefaced Clownn (Mark Jaster), which is the oldest clown type. He wears a fancy white suit and white cone hat. He speaks in broken french and is very arrogant. Augustine (Sabrina Mandell) is, well, an Auguste Clown. She wears an adorable red nose, a frilly skirt and hat. She translates for Pinot and has fun at his expense. They were absolutely a.d.o.r.a.b.l.e. Pronounced with a french accent, please.  Pinot’s agility and acrobats were mesmerizing. He was inflated with an air pump, he turned thin air into an escalator, elevator and stairs. He even took requests from the audience to morph into different animal. For her part, Augustine was a tickle. She got everything wrong, but managed upstaging Pinot every time. She played lots of jokes and always got caught.  She used a whoopie cushion as a musical instrument!

If you’d like to or need to be reminded of the pure and simple joy of life, Pinot  & Augustine will do the trick. Their show is pure entertainment, clean and fresh fun. I caught myself wondering why there aren’t more clown shows like this. It’s my personal opinion that the show’s name should be changed to Le Spectacle le plus Adorable du Monde. The Most Adorable Show in the World!

Pinot & Augustine played on July 10, 2013, at Happenstance Theater at Hylton Performing Arts Center -10960 George Mason Circle, in Manassas, VA.

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