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Minotaur - and NKU Senior - at Center of Latest Show at Know Theatre

Asterius the Minotaur turns 30 tomorrow, and he’s facing more than just your average birthday blues...

“I’m sitting on my rock in the middle of the Labyrinth,” muses Landon Horton, a Northern Kentucky University senior. “I’ve just had a recurring dream about my mother.”

So the Minotaur has mommy issues? “Oh, yeah.”

Favorite Know Theatre playwright Steve Yockey is back with another regional premiere, Heavier Than…, playing March 10-April 1. If you loved The Fisherman’s Wife (starring the fabulous Octopus and Squid) and the wildly imaginative and deeply moving Pluto, those are Yockey plays, too.

Yockey’s scripts are always witty and lyrical and opens us to exotic worlds – even when it’s a kitchen. In Heavier Than… the playwright plays with ancient legend through a contemporary lens, telling a painfully funny and moving story about the families we yearn for versus the families we’re stuck with.

So who’s the Minotaur anyway? Quickie recap. King Minos is married to Pasiphae (played by splendid Piper Davis at Know.) Minos ticks off god Poseidon, who over-reacts and makes Pasiphae fall in love with a bull. The outcome is the half-man/half-bull Minotaur, and if that weren’t bad enough, he only eats humans.

Horton, terrific on campus in Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom earlier this season, has been building an impressive resume at Cincinnati professional theaters. He just completed a run of The Glass Menagerie at New Edgecliff (where past roles include Master Harold…and the Boys). Know audiences have seen him in last season hit urban drama Black Top Sky.

“Outside exposure is the best exposure,” Horton says. “That’s where you’re going.”

Back on his rock, Aster has to contend with a saucy, less-than-supportive Chorus; his half-sister has fallen for Theseus, who intends to kill him; and let’s not forget the sex-obsessed boy with wings (a.k.a. Icarus.)  And of course Aster is pining for his estranged mother.

All of it, Horton says, explains the play’s title. For him, Heavier Than… is about “how heavy his horns are, how heavy things weigh on him, how he just wants to be loved.”

As to what’s next, “I want to say wherever the wind takes me – but the weather has been crazy lately…”

Heavier Than…, through April 1. Know Theatre, 1120 Jackson St., Over-the-Rhine. 8 p.m. Thursday- Saturday, 3 p.m. Sunday. Tickets $20. 513-300-5669 and knowtheatre.com.

Written by Jackie Demaline, RCN Arts