The Selfish Giant by Oscar Wilde
“The Selfish Giant built a high wall all round his lovely garden to keep the children out.
But it also kept Spring away, so that it was always Winter in the garden, and the North Wind and the Frost and the Snow danced about the trees. One morning the Giant looked out and saw a most wonderful sight……”
This much loved fairy tale is brought to life using beautiful puppets and original music.
The story is adapted to broaden its appeal, while keeping the charm of Oscar Wilde’s story.
Feel free to enquire about bookings, with no commitments.
We have made a beautiful little book of the show.
It has been drawn and coloured by Jo and it comes in a handmade cloth bag made by Sue.
The words are by Oscar Wilde slightly altered as they are in the show. The pictures are based on the puppets.
The book folds out so it can be put up as a long, long, long picture.
All sold out… sorry!
Set-up: 1 1/2 hours.
Get-out: 45 minutes.
Space for puppet stage: 18ft wide, 12ft deep, 10ft 3 inches high. (5m x 4m x 3.1m)
Blackout or greyout desirable.
Two electrical sockets.
Animations Magazine “The Selfish Giant” by Oscar Wilde – performed by PuppetCraft
It was too good a chance to miss – the first public showing of ‘The Selfish Giant’ at Holbeton village hall in South Devon.
This has always been one of my favourite Oscar Wilde stories, but here it has been adapted to broaden its appeal and in this it succeeds – the references to the child’s “wounds of love” and in fact any reference to Christ are gone and we are left to make up our own minds about the Giant’s favourite child.
We were let into the hall which was wonderfully transformed – quite the most beautifully painted and designed set I have seen. Faced with my own reaction I wondered if the puppets would be upstaged by their beautiful surroundings, but I had no need to fear. The children puppets operated from above were very believable and fun, each with its own character. The Giant was immense and seemed to almost fill the whole stage – not an easy puppet to operate in the given stage area but John Roberts managed to convince me at all times. The building of the stone wall was quite breathtaking and so inspired. The set was now, unbelievably, even more incredible!
Here are a few of my favourite pieces in a show packed with visual delights:
The coming of winter and the leaves all falling off of the trees at once. The children sneaking back into the garden by torch light, through a hole in the wall. The Giant lifting the small child into the tree. The Frost, the Hail and the North Wind playing in the wintry garden. The tree sprouting blossoms magically;and most definitely that garden wall and the iron gate.
All the puppets (about 18 in all) were operated by John Roberts. The Giant’s head was operated with one hand, the other becoming the Giant’s hand to build the wall and to perform much other comic business.
The children puppets, the Frost (a marvellous puppet), the Hail and the North Wind were operated from above from a gantry, which was hidden from us by a huge wintry cloud.
Rowan Wylie, actress and multi- instrumentalist with 30 years professional experience who has worked with such companies as the international Footsbarn Travelling Theatre, Desperate Men and last year with PuppetCraft (Tristan and Isolde), operated small rod puppet birds and played the many instruments. These included traditional silver flute, psaltery and ukulele and unusual sound makers – twanged, rattled or struck – and worked the lighting board – what a team ! Rowan narrated the story, including the audience in the show through song and chat.
Hard work certainly for the performers but what a wonderful show.
Congratulations to all those involved!
Catch this show if you can.