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Rare NYC Performances by Vaskakas Puppet Theater (Hungary)

For more detailed information please check below, for information on the shows and on buying tickets please visit the website of Abrons Arts Center by clicking here.

Venue:
Abrons Arts Center - Henry Street Settlement
466 Grand Street New York, NY 10002
212.598.0400 ■ www.abronsartscenter.org

Metamorphosis
Shows:
2012 September 29 Saturday, 7.30 pm
2012 October 7 Sunday, 3 pm
2012 October 8 Monday, 7.30 pm
2012 October 9 Tuesday, 7.30 pm
2012 October 10 Wednesday, 7.30 pm

The Shoemaker's Dream
Shows:
2012 September 30 Sunday, 2 pm
2012 September 30 Sunday, 5 pm
2012 October 3 Wednesday, 7.30 pm
2012 October 4 Thursday, 7.30 pm
2012 October 5 Friday, 7.30 pm
2012 October 6 Saturday, 3 pm
2012 October 7 Sunday, 11 am

Vaskakas Puppet Theater is one of the foremost representatives of puppetry in the world, performing regularly to both younger and adult crowds and often experimenting with technical and dramaturgical innovation in a genre that has been undergoing a radical rethinking of its limits and possibilities.The troupe, counting 26 members, often embarks on international tours as well, and has cooperated with some of the best and most renowned creative minds in the field. These include Krysztof Rau of Poland, Adela Moldovan of Romania and the duo of Peter Pashev and Zhenya Pashova from Bulgaria.


East Central Europe has always been a region where puppetry, fed by a strong historical tradition, could thrive as a legitimate, if at times peripheral art form. Part of the neo-avant-garde and postmodern waves of innovation that catapulted first and foremost Polish and Romanian theater to global success, it has profited immensely during the past decades from the close professional coexistence with acted theater. Vaskakas Theater certainly ranks as one of the best representatives of contemporary puppetry, amply demonstrating the expressive power of the medium and the creativity of its members and collaborators.

The first Hungarian ensemble to receive the Grand Diploma of UNIMA (Union Internationale de la Marionnette), Vaskakas Theater has participated at festivals in a dozen European countries, cooperated with the best in the field, and garnered domestic and international awards, most recently at the 21st UNIMA meeting in Chengdu, China. This fall, they bring their innovative, next-generation puppetry to the United States for the first time, guest-performing at the Abrons Arts Center with support from their home city of Győr and the Balassi Institute, the Hungarian Cultural Center in New York.

Metamorphosis

Shows:

2012 September 29 Saturday, 7.30 pm

2012 October 7 Sunday, 3 pm

2012 October 8 Monday, 7.30 pm

2012 October 9 Tuesday, 7.30 pm

2012 October 10 Wednesday, 7.30 pm

The one-act, non-verbal object animation piece Metamorphosis - White Magic won the award for best scenography at the 21st Unima World Congress and Puppetry Festival, the most important forum of this genre experiencing a creative and artistic rebirth. The piece is the result of close cooperation between the Theater and one of the great minds of puppetry, Professor Krzysztof Rau of Poland, who brought in his artistic team to create this unique and transcendent piece  (music: Robert Luczak / choreography: Tadeusz Wisniewski / choreographer' assistant: Dariusz Jakubaszek / directed and dramatized by Krysztof Rau).


Metamorphosis highlights manual dexterity and the skill of the puppeteer (present on the stage), but more importantly it uses the medium of pliable fabric, folded, tied and suspended only by the animators' hands, to offer musings on the nature of play itself. The puppeteers are playing on stage, with the audience observing their games, as do their figures which keep transforming into yet other animal shapes while experiencing conflict and cooperation, exclusion and inclusion in the unstable universe created out of white linen. While incessantly playful and suitable for all ages, the piece is unmistakably a series of perceptive musings about ourselves as social beings, the creative and competitive pulsations palpable in our interactions and even in our innate playfulness and imagination. The universes we dream reveal just as much about our humanity as learned analyses of the mind do.

Previously director of the Bialystok Puppet Theatre and founder of the Puppetry Department at the Bialystok Theatre Academy, Prof. Krzysztof Rau is an award-winning Polish director and theorist well-known throughout Europe. The piece is the outcome of his fourth joint workshop with the Iron Rooster Puppet Theatre in Győr, Hungary.

The Shoemaker's Dream

Shows:

2012 September 30 Sunday, 2 pm

2012 September 30 Sunday, 5 pm

2012 October 3 Wednesday, 7.30 pm

2012 October 4 Thursday, 7.30 pm

2012 October 5 Friday, 7.30 pm

2012 October 6 Saturday, 3 pm

2012 October 7 Sunday, 11 am

The Iron Rooster Puppet Theater and the Dezső Fitos Dance Company (Budapest) also perform their genre-crossing co-production entitled The Shoemaker's Dream (dance and choreography: Enikő Kocsis, Dezső Fitos/ puppeteers: Edit Ragán, Tamás Szúkenyik/ design: Gábor Michac/ music: Lajos Pál and Péter Makó/ directed and dramatized by Rozi Kocsis). The production has played to full houses and received rave reviews since its premier at the National Dance Theatre in Budapest in March 2011.

The show is driven by the combined talents of two dancers from the Dezső Fitos Dance Company and two puppeteers from the Theatre. It is an exceptional dance theatre performance that skillfully melds genres while transporting audiences to the dreamworld of a mischievous, old, whistling shoemaker and his exhausted and grumpy wife, whose miraculous journey begins when a dream-girl, the kind, youthful and charming alter-ego of the wife, steps down from a poster. Shoes come to life, tapping, knocking, dancing and misbehaving - and soon the craftsman's tools begin to move as well. Winding their way through the various emotional dynamics of their relationship, the dancing couple samples a wide range of genres, from tango to step and acrobatic moves on to Hungarian folk dance in a seamless choreography that naturally melds folk dance with puppet theatre.

The roles of the shoemaker and his wife are choreographed and performed by outstanding dancers Dezső Fitos and Enikő Kocsis, both recipients of the  the EuroPas Hungarian Dance Prize (2010) in the category folk dance. Among the top performers in the world of Hungarian dance today, they have also won numerous festival prizes as choreographers and as directors. The story was dramatized and directed by Rozi Kocsis, winner of the Blattner Award, the highest professional honor presented to puppeteers in Hungary.

 

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