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Sunday, July 25, 2021

Puppets take the lead in colourful show

Looks of wonder, excitement, and fascination.

That’s how people will react to Curious Legends’ latest show, Taylor’s Run.

A highlighted performance during the city’s inaugural New Annual festival, the production follows Taylor, a young girl who’s lost her favourite toy.

She sets out on a mission to search for her best friend which involves sliding through piles of garbage, dodging giant apple cores, meeting cheeky native animals, and eventually coming face-to-face with a ghastly trash monster.

Featuring a cast of giant puppets, professional performers and talented children, Curious Legends’ artistic director Mitchell Reese says the show will transform the Summerhill Waste Management Centre at Wallsend.

“It’s going to be fantastic,” he said.

“It’s a site-specific theatre performance so everything is at a very large scale.

“We had to look at how we would scale it [which involved asking]: ‘okay, if there is a kookaburra with something next to it like an apple core or a can how big would it have to be to be to scale?’

The production makes use of a number of items including, pool noodles as giant straws and custom-made puppets.

Mitchell Reese with a few of their puppets. Photo: Peter Stoop

“Puppets are so versatile, useful and amazing – people love them and look at them with wonder,” Reese said.

The awe-inspiring creatures have been made under the guidance of the team’s head of design Conor Fox or by Fingers Crossed Creative.

“Months and months of work has gone into this production,” Reese said.

“[City of Newcastle] commissioned us pre-COVID and we’ve been working all through lockdown – it’s a big show.

“We also just received funding from the Australian Government’s RISE (Restart Investment to Sustain and Expand) Fund and we will redevelop this show for touring in July and we’ll tour it nationally and internationally in 2022.”

For the visual theatre company, Taylor’s Run will be one of its largest productions.

It has been booked for four performances with two this weekend on Saturday 13, and Sunday 14 February and another two next week on Saturday 20 and Sunday 21 February.

All events will start at 7pm, where audiences will be transported to the Summerhill Waste Management Centre by bus from the Wallsend Library.

Go to the New Annual website for more.

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