In the episode 4.6 On Your Own, the New Perception Players come to town, played by the group Mummenschantz (Roberto Barca, Floriana Frassetto, Bernie Schurch). The famed Swiss mask-mime troupe was founded in 1969 by Shurch, and the late Andres Boussard, who died of AIDS in 1993.

Initially, the two Swiss mimes mixed spoken dialogue with mask sketches to create curiously comical compositions. In the early 1970Ős, when Italian-American Floriana Frassetto ("Flo") joined the pair to form the Mummenschanz trio, all dialogue was abandoned in favor of shows featuring pure mime and mask sketches able to "speak" in a truly universal language.

The name Mummenschantz is German for "mummery" or "masquerade" - a French equivalent, carried over into England, was the masque, which also included poetry and specially composed music - but "Mummenschanz" had another, related meaning for the original trio.

"It means 'game of chance,' an old, mercenary expression. You play dice wearing a wooden mask to hide your expression from your (opponent). We discovered the term in a museum," Frassetto explained. (1)

After a recent three year hiatus, Mummenschantz toured a new show in 2001, "Next." The group is known worldwide. There are many non-English web sites.

Some English ones:

Mummenschantz on the Net

2/22/-01 Mummenschanz brings its 'Next' show to Barclay after three-year hiatus


Kroger Center Performance in 1991

Annenberg Center for Performing Arts Review 2/1/01


From when I saw Mummenschantz perform in Denver on 3/4/94.

The program from the performance (printed on silver mylar).

Created 1/9/02
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