The production premiered to sold-out houses on Broadway at the New Victory Theatre in March 1998, and performed there again in 2002 for a sold-out, four-week run. In addition the company ahs appeared around the world, including in Morocco, Ireland, Singapore, Chile, and more. It reached a mass audience when it aired on “Late Night with David Letterman.”
The New York Times called it “…skillful… joyful… buoyant entertainment. Helium light and hilarious.”
Fred Garbo, a professional performer since 1974, founded his Inflatable Theatre Company more than 20 years ago. “One fateful day in 1988, I took a breather from show biz with a bit of skydiving,” said Garbo. “While packing my parachute, I was struck by its qualities: bright colors, strong material and most important to a traveling performer (who spends a ton of time flying in airplanes to theaters) so much of it could pack into a really small space! Bingo! The parachute material inflates into a huge, big prop and then deflates down to nearly nothing.”
With the help of friend and hot air balloon artist George York, many strange, inflatable, props were created. When donned by Garbo, a self-inflating body suit – sealed at the neck, wrists and ankles, reducing the head, hands and feet to doll size – became Fred Zeplin, the inflatable man. Described by Garbo as a “human beach ball who can bounce back, in this case, literally,” this initial character remains an important part of the show, but he was only the beginning of the pop-action, air filled adventure.
Garbo is joined onstage by ballerina Daielma Santos, originally from Brazil and a former principal dancer with the Opera Paulista Company of Saõ Paulo. Santos brings grace and fantasy to the show with her whimsical dance and amazing rhythm, perfectly complimenting the original, ballooning creations. She can dance the cancan, but her skirt grows longer and longer, morphing into a ball gown, then a balloon engulfing her and finally spiriting her away.
For a sneak peak of the performing duo, visit www.fredgarbo.com.
This show is ideal for the whole family, appealing to audiences of all ages, and tickets are $24-$26/adults and $22-$24/children and can be purchased by visiting www.telluridepalm.com or calling 970/369-5669.