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Innovative series of puppet shows set to start

Thursday, January 5th, 2012 | Posted by

Three Little Pigs are confronted by a Big Bad Wolf in Fratello Marionettes' production of "Carnival of the Animals."

This coming Sunday (1/8), at 1:30 p.m., a delightful series of family- and kid-friendly puppet shows begins a five-month run at Sonoma Community Center.

The series kicks off with puppeteers Lee Armstrong and Kamala Portuges of Sonoma-based Images in Motion. Their original show, “Water Works,” uses a variety of rod, shadow and hand puppets to tell the story of a playful duck and child that splash their way through the seasons.

Puppet shows coming in the next four months:

  • Sunday, February 5: Michael and Valerie Nelson of Magical Moonshine Theater will produce “Animalitos,” a bi-lingual puppet show that was chosen Best Children’s Play at the Almaty World Puppet Festival in Kazakhstan. Animalitos, told in a combination of English and Spanish, is a collection of Aesop’s fables woven together.
  • Sunday, March 4: Images in Motion returns to present “What in the World,” an original show based on a rich tradition of hand and shadow
    puppets. In this production, discoveries abound as a young girl builds a traveling machine and searches far and wide for dragons in need.
  • Sunday, April 1: “Carnival of the Animals,” written by French composer Camille Saint-Saens in 1886, will be performed by Kevin Menegus and Fred Riley of The Fratello Marionettes. The fanciful score serves as a canvas for presenting three classic storybook fairy tales: the “Three Little Pigs,” the “Tortoise and the Hare,” and the “Ugly Duckling.” Utilizing a unique performance style, the puppet and puppeteer are in full view of the audience on a raised stage.
  • Sunday, May 6: The series concludes with “Big Bad Bruce,” a classic story full of rollicking action and humor in which Bruce, a big bully of a bear, never picks on anyone his own size until he is diminished in more ways than one by Roxie, a small but very independent witch. This tale is brought to life with the beautiful crafted hand, rod and shadow puppets of Images In Motion.

Tickets for the series are $10 per person or $45 for season tickets. SCC is offering a 10% discount on tickets for single events to members of the Community Center and to the Sonoma Valley Mothers Club. SCC recommends the shows for ages 4 and up.

For tickets and information, call 938-4626 x1, visit the Sonoma Valley Box Office at www.sonomacommunitycenter.org, or drop by the Community Center office (9 a.m.-5 p.m., Tuesday-Saturday) at 276 East Napa Street, Sonoma.

Writer Spotlight

Dianne Reber Hart is our Sonoma correspondent.

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