The following shows are recommended for schools grades K – 5, libraries, festivals and other venues of up to 200 in audience. For larger audience, discounted price available for two back-to-back shows. Presentations include a 45 minute performance and 15 minute puppet demonstration and Q & A session.
Technical requirements for all shows: Raised stage platform with audience on floor or chairs, OR floor level space with audience seated on floor. All seating centered with no center aisle. In school cafetorium, tables cleared for floor seating. Electric outlet available.
When Night Dreams needs dark or semi-darkened room.
STORIES FROM SOUTH OF THE BORDER
Written to highlight the diversity of cultures in Central and South America, Calliope Puppets share three tales collected in their travels. “The Singing Tree”, from Guatemala, is a beautiful myth explaining the origin of Guatemala’s national instrument, the marimba. Then, from Argentina’s famed writer and puppeteer, Javier Villafañe, in a story well known in all South America, “Juancito y Maria” each prove their bravery, and their love. And finally, from Mexico, in the folk tale “El Tlacuache y el Coyote”, the clever opossum, Tlacuache, tricks Coyote. Presented with traditional hand puppets, along with a six foot tree, and featuring Guatemalan marimba, Argentine tango, and Mexican La Banda music, this dynamic show is fun for all ages.
SPECIAL FOCUS: Culture and Geography Awareness: Guatemala, Argentina, Mexico
TALE TYPES: Creation myth, Overcoming evil, Trickster tale
Offered in love and appreciation of the many Latin American cultures, Calliope Puppets touring experience in Central and South America is the inspiration in sharing these stories, to highlight the fascinating diversity in the countries south of our border. Calliope Puppets have presented at puppetry festivals in Puerto Rico, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Mexico, Peru, Colombia, and Argentina, meeting and sharing ideas with puppeteers from the entire Spanish speaking world. Available in English or bilingual versions.
THE SORCERER’S APPRENTICE Calliope Puppets’ version of this classic tale from the Brothers Grimm features a strong and quick-witted girl whose ability to read is her greatest asset in overcoming a greedy sorcerer. This magical presentation features a striking array of puppetry techniques, including introductory puppets that appear from within a cape worn by the puppeteer, near life-size girl and sorcerer, traditional hand puppets, as well as rod puppet flying birds and shadow puppet fish in the exciting chase scene. The audience participates in reciting simple poems as they assist in the working of magic spells. And the girl remains true throughout to her mother’s advice to do something that puts good into the world. SPECIAL FOCUS: Literacy, Independent Thinking TALE TYPE: Outsmarting a powerful character (actually based on the child’s ability to read)
This show has traveled to Wolf Trap Arts Center in Virginia, as well as to Mexico, Peru and Argentina in Spanish.
THE FISHERMAN AND HIS WIFE – TODAY! Reduce, Re-Use, and Recycle Calliope Puppets re-imagine this Brothers Grimm classic tale with a contemporary message to motivate individual responsibility in care of our world. As the characters ask for too much, the audience, and finally even the characters themselves, learn how their actions have impact on the world around them. Dynamic hand puppets, lively music, and thoughtful audience participation reveal real life issues woven into this humorous and memorable presentation for children ages 5-12. SPECIAL FOCUS: Ecology, Social Responsibility TALE TYPE: Adaptation of classic theme of the consequences of asking for too much.
Versions of this show have toured extensively in Louisiana and the U.S., to the Kennedy Center for Performing Arts in Washington DC, and in Spanish to Mexico.
WHEN NIGHT DREAMS Magical shadow puppetry brings to life timeless tales of night from three cultures. In “The Night Troll”, from Iceland, a girl bravely sings to trick a hungry troll. The West African spider Anansi and his clever sons discover a beautiful ball of light in “Anansi and the Moon”. And “Coyote Places the Stars”, from the Navaho people of North America, tells why Coyote howls at night. The presentation features a unique style that reveals the puppeteer’s secrets, including live sand drawing for scenery in the final story. SPECIAL FOCUS: Cultural Diversity TALE TYPES: Trickster tale, Tales of “Why?”
This show has toured in the U.S. as well as in Spanish to Argentina.
FABLES OF AESOP Calliope Puppets bring to life original adaptations of four classic Aesop’s fables with dynamic hand puppets. The North Wind and the Sun shows how kindness is more powerful than force. The importance of telling the truth centers The Boy Who Cried Wolf. In The Tortoise and the Hare, we see the value of perseverance. And The Lion and the Mouse reveals that even the small can be powerful. These are cultural icons containing timeless wisdom – stories that must be told! SPECIAL FOCUS: Morals and character TALE TYPES: fables
This show has toured in a minimal language version (with limited Arabic) to Oman and Bahrain.
AMERICA’S TRICKSTER RABBIT Three fun folk tales show the history of our very own trickster rabbit, Compere Lapin! Shadow puppets demonstrate his West African roots in Zomo the Rabbit. Then Louisiana’s Compere Lapin tricks Bouki into taking the short end of the harvest, as dynamic hand puppets. Finally, Brer Rabbit is brought to life in a larger than life-size puppet, along with some fun costuming to include audience participation. With ancient roots in West African oral tradition, the messages and humor of these stories remain timeless and make this a dynamic and memorable show for the whole family. SPECIAL FOCUS: Cultural Diversity TALE TYPES: Trickster tales
This show has made many appearances for culture study, as well as for a unique Easter presentation.
WALLS AND BRIDGES Stop and Think! Talk It Out! Get Help When You Need It! Every Individual Can Make a Difference! Four folk tales involve audience members in thoughtful reflection and active participation towards understanding of these crucial steps in peaceful conflict resolution. This fun program features timeless folk tales from Russia, the Marshall Islands, the United States, and China, performed with hand, shadow, and tabletop puppets. Creative tabletop staging make this a fun and thought provoking show for all ages. SPECIAL FOCUS: Peaceful conflict resolution TALE TYPES: folktales
This memorable show has toured in Pakistan, Costa Rica, Indonesia, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, and the U.S.