The compelling fantasies of Pablo Cano

As I walked into the Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) in North Miami, I saw various contemporary artworks and exhibits, and I prepared myself for the surely eclectic Pablo Cano performance I was about to see. In the rear of the museum, Pablo Cano had a room full of adults and children under 5 years old ready to see his new creations. With marionettes, astounding musical compositions and intricate characters and stories, Pablo Cano’s new show did not disappoint.

“Viva Vaudeville” is Cano’s “personal journey through likes and dislikes,” he explained after the performance. “It was very autobiographical. I began the show with a marionette that resembled myself, and went from there.”

Indeed, the show begins with a mock conversation between a marionette – strongly resembling Cano – and a telephone from MOCA telling him they need a new show, and they would like him to bring it to them. Then, after the first hilariously creative acts starring “Bee Bee Butterfly,” “Nikki the Ant” and “Boring Boris,” Cano brings out an eight-foot-tall, paper-thin monument called the “Strong Man.” The “Strong Man” lifts up giant dumbbells with great ease as the band plays the sound effects of the original score for the piece, composed by Cano’s father.

The highlight of the show is the last pieces, “Lucifer Red Diablo and “Kiki She Devil,” in which the devil himself sings a Tony Martin love song to a she-devil in a touching, yet humorous scene.

Cano’s exhibition is truly a visual and musical masterpiece, as he uses household and street items with intricate designs to tell amusing stories over beautifully crafted sound effects and melodies to accompany the acts. From the light and playful, to the introspective and thought-provoking, Cano amuses his audience because he knows who they are. Though the crowd was largely under the age of 5 years old, anyone could enjoy and appreciate Cano’s creativity.

Pablo Cano’s “Viva Vaudeville” Performances and Exhibition is being held at the Museum of Contemporary Art in North Miami from Oct. 20 to Dec. 29. Entry to the museum is $5 and $3 with a Student ID.

Dan Buyanovsky may be contacted at