already been here since April, when 120 artists from a variety of disciplines
converged on the Wits School of the Arts for a six-week residency.
puppets that will perform a larger-than-life version of Romeo and Juliet, titled The Giant Match,
across the country.
visual artists, builders and puppeteers – are finally ready to take their
creations to the streets.
France says: “This is visual art that does not appear in galleries.
idea behind it is the process of collective creation.
It is a team walk; it is
about reclaiming the streets; it’s about street theatre.”
below the now defunct revolving restaurant on the corner of Bertha and Jorissen
streets in Braamfontein, the artists have been sculpting, painting, designing
and rehearsing in a double-volume room.
This space accommodates the puppets,
which are a neck-craning 4.5m high.
learn to manipulate them.
The heads and hands are first sculpted in clay, which
is overlaid with paper mâché, and then the finished head is painted.
the mechanical bodies that allow the actors to manipulate their characters are
made in another workshop, while the scriptwriters fashion a story for the two
competing families, and the designers dress the characters.
different skills under
them to life, we are making these stories our own.”
than two years and says that people respond to him differently when he is
controlling the puppets.
He says what he likes about it is that it takes him and
his fellow actors out onto the streets.
match, and the giant families will perform at fanparks and at the opening
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