On Monday, June 19, 2006, the virtual puppet performance Thumbelina directed and played by Robert Waltl took part in the international festival Multikids 2006 in Vienna, Austria. The festival embracing different cultures and creativity takes place from June 19 to June 23 in Dietheater – Künstlerhaus am Karlsplatz.
The first virtual puppet performance was produced by Forum Ljubljana and Cankarjev dom Ljubljana. It is a combination of computer animation and puppet or theatre performance presented within virtual computer environment. Fairytale characters on the screen, assisted by the animator and the spectators, are trying to save the main character Thumbelina from a number of complicated situations. The open and plastic computer space offers a rich and creative environment for this Andersen’s fairytale, which gives young spectators acting as co-creators of the performance thrill and great enthusiasm.
The authors of the performance concept are Darij Kreuh and Tadej Fius. The director and actor Robert Waltl performed Thumbelina in German.
Hans Christian Andersen
FIRST VIRTUAL PUPPET SHOW
Concept: Darij Kreuh, Tadej Fius
Director and performer: Robert Waltl
Visuals: Ana Košir
Music: Špela Avsenak
Music production: Miloš Radosavljevič, Špela Avsenak
Dramaturgy: Ivica Buljan
Production: Forum Ljubljana, director: Eva Rohrman
Co-production: Cankarjev dom
Supported by the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Slovenia and The City Municipality of Ljubljana
Festivals and tours:
World congres and festival UNIMA, Rijeka, Croatia 2004, LUTFEST Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina, 2004, PITA festival Belgrade,Serbia 2004, Exodos festival Ljubljana, Slovenia, 2004, Puppet festival Teheran, Iran, 2004;Solo puppet Festival Lodz, Poljska, 2005; Festival szena internationale Milano, Italy, 2005; Festival international de teatro Havana, Cuba, 2005,Puppet Festival Istanbul, Turky 2005, Festival Eurofest, Poland, 2006, Multikids Festival Wienna, Austria, 2006
Thumbelina is one of the subtlest and most beautiful fairy-tales by the Danish writer Hans Christian Andersen - a story about a little girl whose fragility takes her to different places and whose courage and love always help her find the right path.
All Anderson’s fairy tales are concerned with the initiation process, a journey the hero or heroine has to undergo in order to overcome troubles. And as always, Thumbelina’s distress is rewarded in the end.
Our first virtual puppet show is a mixture of film and puppet performance in a virtual computer environment. Characters from fairy-tales come to life on screen and, assisted by the one animator and the audience, try to save the heroine from troubles. The story is set in virtual space which is open and flexible – such creatively rich environment will undoubtedly fascinate the little ones, who will have a chance to participate in the performance.
Each situation consists of at least two different solutions. Assisted by the animator, the children will determine the characters and the course of events in a specific situation.
The fairy-tale is structured as a play which focuses on creative team work. The correct solution and decision in a certain situation upgrades the classical puppet show with an educational-didactic element. Wishing to make the operation of complex technology attractive to children, the authors will encourage them to play the role of animator after the performance and stir the protagonists to life.