A puppet, a
balding forty-something man in rumbled suit and tie stands on a stage. A
Spanish guitar strums tranquilly in the background. The audience is silent.
From nowhere a giant arm with clenched fist stretches out above the man,
unbeknownst to him. The music crescendos. Hovering no longer, the fist smashes
down, flattening the puppet’s head. Laughter erupts from the crowd.
funny. Just one of the many sentiments the Old Trout Puppet Workshop explores
in their celebration of dark comedy and death in Famous Puppet Death Scenes,
showing Thursday, Jan. 31 to Saturday, Feb. 2 at MY Millennium Place as part of
Celebration 2010 and the Cultural Olympiad.
have been totally devastating to watch,” says another puppet grey haired and
bony with age after watching the fist “reaper.”
fragile, delicate soul confronted by vast and brutal circumstances. It renders
us helpless and hopeful in the same moment — or do we not see glimmering in him
that self same luminescence that powers our own hearts. These are not mere
blocks of wood that suffer before you. They are your companions.”
of death is explored in what critiques have called one of the most original
theatre going experiences anywhere.
“One of the
wildest, wackiest, most inventive ?puppet shows you're ever likely to
see,” wrote The Toronto Star, giving the show four out of four stars.
and Mail also gave the troupe four out of four.
visuals... weird and wonderful...?by turns comic, macabre, and sublimely
Trout Puppet Workshop will deconstruct the audience’s traumatized psyche so
that death is no longer a tearful, black-suit-and-shoes-wearing tragedy, but
just another part of life’s cycle. They offer a cure for a fear of death
through the staging of famous death scenes culled from the most famous death
scenes in puppet shows, such as Edward’s last meal from The Ballad of Edward
Grue, Dung Beetle’s lament from Flap Flap Flap by Lizzie Fook, and Bipsy’s
mistake from Bipsy and Mumu Go to the Zoo, to name just a few.
Puppet Death Scenes is only one of more than a dozen events taking place during
Celebration 2010, which is an official participant of the Vancouver 2008
next two years, cultural events will be showcased in B.C. and hopefully
extended to the rest of Canada, building and celebrating Canada’s arts, culture
and heritage communities. The Cultural Olympiad will then become the Olympic
Arts Festival in 2010, showcasing cultural events before, during and after the