The (very) sad fish lady

The (very) sad fish lady
Conceived, written and directed by Joy McDonald. World Premiere. The Street Theatre, Canberra. 28 September to 5 October, 2013.

This fantastical tale of migration and magic is suitable for all ages. Children will be delighted with the puppeteers Ruth Pieloor and James Scott, their amusing voices, and the almost magical way they can connect with the audience. Adults will enjoy the gentle tale (with a twist in the tail) and all will find something admirable in the music composed by David Pereira.

The tale is set on an island in the Mediterranean Sea, which has a rock nearby upon which an old lady lives. The old lady’s family have migrated to Canberra and she wishes with all her heart that she could be with them again. She kindly helps locals with their problems with her skills in coffee grounds reading, but could anyone grant her the wish she keeps in her heart?

The design by Imogen keen and Hilary Talbot is beautifully realized in a small space, with a versatile white rock, lit-up rocks from the island to the big rock where the old lady lives, and more. Furthermore, at Craft ACT (http://craftact.org.au/exhibitions/) you can see an exhibition of the models and storyboards made in the creative process of this play. The puppeteers are amusing, agile, and hold the audience in the palm of their hands. The show features shadow figures, animation, drawing on a screen and marionettes.

A book with illustrations is also available. This play is highly recommended for school holiday viewing.

Rachel McGrath-Kerr 

Pictured (arms of): James Scott and Ruth Pieloor. Photographer: Lorna Sim

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