Space-Bop Rehearsals

Seamus Miller with the rocket ship. Photo by Tia Shearer-Bassett.

Séamus Miller with the rocket ship. Photo by Tia Shearer-Bassett.

We are thrilled with the enthusiastic response to Space-Bop, including this lovely review from Our Kids. If you would like to see it, visit our friends at Arts on the Horizon.

Meanwhile, here are a few photos of the rehearsal process. The cast is Séamus Miller as the performer/clown  and Christylez Bacon as the musician.

 

 

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Stars and Space Creatures

We are nearly done with objects for Arts on the Horizon’s new baby theater show Space-Bop. We are thrilled to be collaborating again with Tia Shearer-Bassett and working for the first time with Christylez Bacon and Seamus Miller. Back in the summer of 2015 we participated in a workshop of this piece and now rehearsals start in just a few days! Meanwhile, here are some photos from the building process.

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A new star pattern, with one of our light-up gadgets in the background.

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A rather bumpy planet surface.

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The somewhat messy beginnings of another planet.

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Pieces of the astronaut helmet, before being put together.

Outer Space and Baby Theater

Workshop moment with a rocket ship! Photo courtesy of Arts on the Horizon.

Workshop moment with a rocket ship! Photo courtesy of Arts on the Horizon.

Along with the Capital Fringe Festival and our one-night revival of Saudade, this summer was spent working with our friends at Arts on the Horizon to workshop a new baby-theater show called Space-Bop. It stars a clown and musician who travel into outer space, encountering planets, stars and space creatures. Among the objects we created for them is a colorful rocket ship, a tiny astronaut and a pet star.

One of the challenges of this show was coming up with ways to make objects light up, since light and darkness is important to our ideas of outer space and bright lights are engaging for very young audiences. It was very gratifying at the workshop performances to hear tiny voices say “How does it DO that?” As we look ahead to the full production this winter, we are pulling inspiration from other environments to add to our imagined idea of this space-world.

One big inspiration for our work on this piece was the Australian puppet show The Adventures of Alvin Sputnik. Strangely enough, there are many connections to be made with underwater adventures and outer space. Other sources for visuals include classic moon landing photographs, early cinema such as this gem from Georges Melies and vintage design featuring rocket ships. We will post more process photos as we continue working and if you have a little one or just like wordless theater, be sure to put the show on your calendar for February.

Rehearsing Under the Canopy

In celebration of Under the Canopy, which opens tomorrow at the Athenaeum in Old Town Alexandria, VA here are some rehearsal photos:

The anchor point for the titular canopy, in the center of the stage.

The anchor point for the titular canopy, in the center of the stage.

One of the three ladders that make up the set with leaves, flowers and vines.

One of the three ladders that make up the set with leaves, flowers and vines.

Cast members Nora Achrati and Betsy Rosen work with the objects and puppets to bring the rainforest to life.

Cast members Nora Achrati and Betsy Rosen work with the objects and puppets to bring the rainforest to life.

So Much COLOR

Under the Canopy is going to be a very colorful show. Can you guess what each of these photos is a close-up of? There’s a slide show of the final objects (as they look right now, things could still change!) at the end.

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Looking Ahead to the Fall

A new work in progress. Looking ahead to the fall and next year, we are thrilled to be able to announce two collaborative projects we will be working on next season with two different DC area companies.

First, we will be creating puppets and objects for Under the Canopy, a theater piece created for children age 0-2 by Tia Shearer and Matt Bassett for Arts on the Horizon. This project will have a workshop in early August and a full production next February. Tia and Matt have done some lovely work for little ones in the past and we are excited to get to work with them on this rainforest inspired, multi-sensory experience for families. We are looking forward to learning lots about how to best reach our youngest audiences!

We will also be designing and building shadow puppets for Fabulas Mayas, the first show of the GALita season for children at GALA Hispanic Theatre. Written by Cecilia Cackley, this bilingual show is adapted from Guatemalan fables of the Maya tradition, and features the Creator and Shaper of the world along with various animals who play tricks on each other and in general cause trouble. We are also looking at possibly touring this production to area schools in November. We are excited about sharing lots of new puppets and stories with DC this year! See you at the theater!