Month: June 2012

Some thoughts after Chengdu

I’ve now participated in four big UNIMA assemblies: the Tolosa 2006 and Dordrecht 2010 Councils, and the Perth 2008 and Chengdu 2012 Congresses.  This time, as I experienced it, the atmosphere was tinged with the exceptionally strong efforts made by the organisers to perform as hosts. Which is to say that, for me, the hosting itself took a very performative role (in all senses). On several occasions during the week I felt I was having to play a predestined part in a well-rehearsed spectacle, but not necessarily as a human actor but rather as a manipulated object – or...

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Pictures of Noriko Nishimoto with “Madam Award”

“Madam Award” (puppet made by Damiet van Dalsum) arrived safely from Dordrecht to Fremantle, into the hands of award winner Noriko Nishimoto. She receives the award from the Unima Women’s Commission, given in Chengdu, at the 21th Unima Congress. Puppetring already published one previous note and the new of the delivery of the prize. Here are now some more pictures, received from the Unima Women’s...

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The Closing Ceremony of the Chengdu Festival

We cannnot end our Chengdu chronicles without talking about the Closing Ceremony. The reason is simple: if the Opening Ceremony stood out for its astonishingly spectacular nature, the closing one was more intimate, touching and artistically refined. The fact that it was celebrated in a theatre, the Southwest Theatre, doubtless explains why it was more contained, but it was in the idea itself for the show in which the brilliance of the artists and great theatrical intelligence of the stage director, whose name I don’t know, could shine. Mrs. Tang Dayu, Secretary of UNIMA China and organizer of the...

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Sogo bò masquerade and puppet theatre

The Museu da Marioneta of Lisbon is full of peculiar collections. Starting with global marionettes as water puppets from Vietnam or shadow figures from China and Turkey, the visitor is guided into Lusitan’s tradition —from its European roots through old puppeteers until late 20th century renovation and a bit of animated cinema. Also visitor can see some witnesses of Brazilian mamulengos. (You can read this article in Spanish by Toni Rumbau about the Museu da Marioneta.) In addition there is a very special corner at the museum dedicated to African masks. They belong to Francisco Capelo’s Collection and are...

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Breaking news: Jan Klaassen is back in town

After years of absence Jan Klaassen finally returns to the heart of the Dutch capital. This ‘national heritage’ of Amsterdam’s puppet culture can again be seen on Dam Square – where it belongs as an integral part of the city – in front of the Palace and the New Church. There is much support for this nearly 120 year-old tradition. On Sunday and Wednesday afternoons in the spring and summer of 2012, several versions of Jan Klaassen (or, as the show is in fact refered to here, Punch and Judy), will be played collectively. “Jan Klaassen is in the...

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