|Lied Fam Fest:
the Gizmo Guys!
by Mark Wilkening
Monday, October 22, 2001
An October night, not a tornado in sight, but still the Gizmo Guys whirled into town, like crisp New York leaves. They immediately threw themselves into local imaginations. They juggled 'til our jaws dropped.
The Lied Center laid out their first ever Fam Fest, sponsored by Rembolt and Ludke Attorney's at Law. The Lincoln City Jugglers conjured up a thunderous amount of props for giving juggling workshops in the Lied lobby. For a moment it seemed as though almost everyone there was a juggler, or was at least trying very hard to become one. Both kids and adults alike participated in juggling demonstrations with the Lincoln Jugglers. They tossed beanbags, spun diabolos, balanced peacock feathers, and held spinning balls at the tips of fingers.
Just outside the entrance several NU Jugglers, Matt Holland, Dave Schmitter, and Jeff Dixon were busy with thier own jugglery. As patrons approached the doors, shiny clubs and unicycle chrome came to life under the entrance lights. Theatre goers shiny eyes caught glimpses of these out-of-the-everyday props. Many stopped and tipped their heads with smiles there a while. The jugglers tossed an occassional juggling ball into the hands of a hopeful looking passerby, which was immediately restored to a juggling pattern after it was hurled back to the jugglers.
Jeff Dixon narrowly escaped getting clubbed by the juggling clubs passed between Dave and Matt. As they threw clubs to each other Jeff whooshed in between thier passing, almost (but never) colliding with the clubs. This delighted more than a few of the onlookers and drew some applause.
Jim Brennan kept the curious busy by explaining the intricate workings of a diabolo, a chinese yo-yo.
Rick Prevett turned heads with his top spinning acrobatics.
After their evening performance the Gizmo Guys were on hand to talk to local jugglers and the public.
Alan Jacobs gave me some tips about how to build home made juggling clubs. Bethany Vesely talked to Barret Felker a while. She told him that she liked his smile and was given a good sized grin in exchange.