Voice 4 Vision 2011

Thursday, February 24, 2011


From Chinese Theater Works
Tiger Tales,part of the
V4V Festival in 2007
Penny Francis, co-author with Henryk Jurkowski of both A History of European Puppetry: From Its Origins to the End of the 19th Century, and History of European Puppetry: The Twentieth Century, tirelessly writes and lectures about puppetry.(Both books are great resources, by the way.)

Here are some excerpts from a lecture given at LATVIJAS JAUNĀ TEĀTRA INSTITŪTS during the Homo Alibi festival, August 27, 2008. The entire article can be found at: http://www.theatre.lv/en/index.php?parent=215

“Puppetry’s rise to the mainstream in theatre can be mainly attributed to the rise or the return of the public’s interest in a theatre that offers as much visual and musical enjoyment as verbal. It may be termed a ‘Total Theatre’ since it draws on a plurality of performance disciplines and resources.….. According to Mario Kotliar, an Israeli writer, theatre has reached the stage of "open composition", in which verbal communication no longer possesses the pre-eminence it had in the past.…. In conventional drama, the spectator is in a recognisable world. Perhaps the content of the play is personal, but its dialectical laws are universal. In visual theatre, however, these rules are suspended and replaced by a private logic, based upon artistic associations; the viewer enters the creator′s mind…. The production, moreover, requires our participation, because visual theatre provokes the audience′s own associations.                        (from Fa Chu Ebert, "Bama", Jerusalem′s Visual Theatre, "Assaph C" 1990, no.6, p.160)
 “The proposed list of criteria for the critic when reviewing and evaluating performance with puppet figures and objects:
  • Personal enjoyment/satisfaction or their opposites
  • Originality of the conception, the idea.
  • Compatibility of the dramaturgy – why did the producers use puppets or animated objects?
  • The artistic or poetic level of the text or scenario.
  • The aesthetic integrity of the whole: lighting, sound, materials, colours, scale, movement and speech style.
  • The execution: the level of visual invention, the organisation of the space, the lighting, the choreography of the puppets, the skill of the puppeteers in animating the figures and objects and convincing the spectators of their liveness.
  • The crafting skills manifested in: the puppets, the settings, the manipulation, the acting etc.
Some things to think about......

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