Theater: Thwak

The Umbilical Brothers

One-half of this amazing off-Broadway pair is balding and a whiz with a microphone, able to replicate everything from bacon frying to a dog exploding. His long-haired, supple-limbed partner silently acts all this out in perfect synch. Just when you think you've seen the best sound-effects guy and the best mime ever teamed onstage, they switch roles. Fast, inventive, cheerfully crude and wittily self-aware (parodies of Star Wars and Marcel Marceau too), Thwak might be classified as performance art, but we call it pure theater and pure fun.

--By Richard Zoglin

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