Puppets Ripped My Flesh!

But they were awfully cute

Of all the phobias known to man, the fear of German puppets is probably among the rarest and most difficult to comprehend. If you suffer from this fear, it's in your best interests to head to COCA at 524 Trinity Avenue, where puppeteer Matthias Kuchta of Germany's Lille Kartofler Figurentheater will present you with numerous opportunities to grapple with your affliction. The renowned string-puller will flesh out the story of Snow White October 10-12 (show times vary, call 314-725-6555 for details). Kuchta uses nearly life-size textile puppets to tell the classic Brothers Grimm fairy tale in a soft, approachable and interactive manner that's fun for kids as well as therapeutic for those with Deutsche-puppetophobia. Tickets are $17. -- John Goddard

Clown by Law
The next generation

SAT 10/11

What schoolchild doesn't know the famous words of D'artagnan "Le Piddles" Lewis: "Give me a boy at six, and I'll give you a clown at sixteen"? Le Piddles' renowned clown academy created some of the greatest clowns of Europe's Enlivened Age, before being shut down by the Pope's army for "fostering mimes." This was a solid blow against the clownly arts, but now, the Richmond Heights Community Center (8001 Dale Avenue, 314-645-1476) is reviving Piddles' ancient school with a one-day course in clowning for kids ages six to twelve. Aspiring jongleurs will learn face painting, juggling, balloon-animal husbandry and so forth. The class runs from 10 a.m.-noon, costs $12-$15, and all would-be clowns must call ahead to register (this requirement should keep out the mimes, also). Somewhere, Le Piddles smiles through his tears. -- Paul Friswold

Jungle Fever

Disney has become the kiddie equivalent of crack: No kid can resist the potent blend of anthropomorphized animals, the absent-parents motif and song. For those kids who might be building a tolerance for the Disney video stuff, take 'em to Savvis Center (1401 Clark Avenue, 314-421-4400) between October 8 and 12 for a little Disney freebase, a.k.a. Disney on Ice. This year the show is a trifecta-combo of Jungle Story, Tarzan and the Lion King. Tickets are $10.75-$42.50, and there's no shame in admitting you like a toke off the Disney pipe yourself. That singin' orangutan is good stuff. -- Paul Friswold

 
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