Juggling tenpins, fish and vaudeville puns

    The Flying Karamazov Brothers take audiences on a wild ride of silly theatrics, storytelling and ... juggling, lots of juggling. Photo courtesy of sroartists.com

    Expect the unexpected when the Flying Karamazov Brothers — four self-proclaimed eccentric lunatics — present a zany showcase of laugh-out-loud comedy, wild theatrics and astonishing juggling feats at the Craterian Theater in Medford.

    The troupe’s all-new show, “Club Sandwich,” is a theatrical, comedic adventure that transports audiences from a fictional New York City club for juggling millionaires to Cairo, Egypt. It’s an extravaganza of juggling, music, comedy and acrobatics woven into a hilarious and completely silly story of nine desperate people in their quest for juggling’s holy grail: The Clubs that Juggle Themselves, once belonging to an infamous pharaoh, Tootonkarrot.

    “The Flying Karamazov Brothers’ show is so much fun that anyone you take to see it will want to go to bed with you,” wrote Bury St. Edmund of the Chicago Reader. The Wall Street Journal wrote, “The Karamazovs deliver visual and verbal one-liners, all while creatively tossing about anything they can get their hands on!”

    Neither Russian nor brothers, the troupe will perform its mix of clowning and music at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 13, at the Craterian Theater, 23 S. Central Ave., Medford. Tickets are $32, $35 or $38, $22, $25 or $28 for ages 22 and younger, and can be purchased online at craterian.org, at the box office, 16 S. Bartlett St., or by calling 541-779-3000.

    Formed in 1973 at the University of California at Santa Cruz, the Flying Karamazov Brothers have performed around the world, on Broadway, the big screen and television shows.

    Dmitri Karamazov, aka producer and director Paul Magid, creates and writes many shows for the troupe. Also a playwright, his “The Three Moscowteers” was staged in 1984 at the Goodman Theatre in Chicago, and his “Flings & Eros” ran in 2009 at Merrimack Repertory Theatre in Massachusetts, to name only two. His newest, “The Flying Karamazov Brothers,” ran off-Broadway at Minetta Lane Theatre in New York City, the Vaudeville Theatre in London’s West End, and Teatro Compac Gran Via in Madrid.

    The Karamazov Brothers have juggled a lot over the past four decades. Their television appearances include “Seinfeld” episode “The Friar’s Club,” “Ellen,” “The Tonight Show,” “The Today Show” and “Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood.”

    Along with Michael Douglas, Kathleen Turner and Danny DeVito, the Flying Karamazov Brothers starred in the hit adventure film “The Jewel of the Nile.”

    They’ve shared many stages and screens, collaborating with Frank Sinatra, Placido Domingo, The Grateful Dead, The Who, Dolly Parton, Robin Williams, Ken Kesey, Allen Ginsberg, The Smothers Brothers and many others.

    Born out of a Renaissance fair in Northern California and going on to play professional theaters, the troupe won an Obie Award in 1980, the off-Broadway theater awards originally given by The Village Voice to theater artists and groups in New York City.

    Their first Broadway run was at the Walter Kerr in 1983. The same year, they appeared in a Showtime special of juggling and cheap theatrics at the Ed Sullivan Theatre.

    In 1983, the troupe performed in Shakespeare’s “The Comedy of Errors,” directed by Robert Woodruff, at the Goodman Theatre, and in 1984 performed in Magid’s “The Three Moscowteers,” also directed by Woodruff, at the Goodman.

    From street buskers to performing in international theaters, the Karamazov’s repertoire today includes their “Terror Trick,” in which they gradually introduce nine items — a cleaver, a torch, a salt shaker, a ukulele, a skillet, a fish, an egg, a block of dry ice, and a bottle of champagne — and juggle them simultaneously only to end up cooking the fish and the egg in the skillet and drinking the champagne.

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