Sunday, 8 February 2015

The Puppet Giants are coming to Perth

Last weekend we had heavy storms in Perth and although we were lucky we didn't lose power in our area, wet had a power outage for a few seconds, but our phone and internet connections were affected. 

Maybe a lightning strike nearby? So no phone at all and our internet is so, so, so slow that it's frustrating!
Our provider was contacted on Tuesday and we have been told they will repair it in 10 days time!
So now I'm forced to go on the net via my mobile phone and this post was prepared in word and pasted here after an eternity of waiting for blogger to open.

photo from the internet

As part of Perth's  International Arts Festival starting on 13th Feb and ending on 7th March, the "Gentle Giants" will have their first appearance in Australia, with the biggest public art event in the history of Perth's festival on the 13th, 14th and 15th of February.

One million people are expected to see the Giants, an event which will cost $5,4 million, close streets, affect bus routes, and will even involve the removal of median road strips and traffic lights.

A giant puppet, part of a street theatre production entitled "Sea Odyssey", in Anfield
Photo from the internet

The Perth spectacle with the Giants, will comprise of the 6mt tall "Little girl" and the 11mt tall Giant Sea-Diver - and they will tell the story of the Anzac  troops bound for  Gallipoli (in Turkey) and a little girl in a lighthouse who boosted their spirits.

At the end of the day the giants will end up in Langley Park, by the River Swan, with an Anzac commemorative spectacle involving service men and women, promoting the Anzac spirit.

On his way: The diver puppet emerges at the city waterfront and begins his journey to find the Little Girl Giant, based on a real-life girl who lost her father on the Titanic
photo from the internet

In each city they visit around the world, the story the Giants tell is different - for example to mark the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin wall in 2009, the 6mt little giant girl met her 11mt male puppet, carrying replicas of letters confiscated by the Stasi, the East German secret police.
In 2012 in Liverpool, the centenary of the Titanic disaster was commemorated, with the Little Girl representing a school girl who wrote a letter to her father (a steward in the Titanic) days before it sank , and the Deep-Sea Diver puppet, representing her uncle who found his reply 100 years later.
The Liverpool show of 2014, was reportedly one of the most successful events, with an economic impact of $84 million to the local economy.

Street performers Royal de Luxe, are based in the French city of Nantes since 1989, and the puppets include the Little Giant Girl, a giant rhino, two giant giraffes, a giant Grandmother, a Deep-Sea Diver and a dog called Xolo.

Nantes was the birthplace of Jules Verne, whose stories captivated Royal de Luxe director, Jean-Luc Courcoult. He rarely gives interviews and will only take his "Giants" to places where the performances will be free to the public and where he can tell a story that will connect the Giants to the people.

Some interesting facts about the Giants:
The biggest Royal de Luxe audience was in Mexico in 2010 - 3,5million people.
At any one time there are 31 people controlling the biggest Giant, using ropes, pulleys and motors.
The 6mt tall girl weighs 800kg and is made of poplar and lime wood and steel.
There are 24 Lilliputians who help the Little Girl walk 2,5km an hour.
The Little Girl's hair and eyebrows is made up of 50 horse tails. The eyes are made from street lamps and the eyelashes are made with broom hair.
These giants puppets are manipulated by about 120 technicians and artists, plus 200 volunteers, all dressed in red while using pulleys and ropes to bring them to life through movement, breath and eyelid fluttering.

I look forward to going to see them at least once! 
Have you seen them in your city? Were you awed by the experience?


  1. I'm really looking forward to seeing the giants Sami, should be quite a spectacle.

  2. Me too, it will be amazing for sure!

  3. Oh man. I am SO EXCITED about this. Can't wait! Also your lightning photo there is fab!

  4. I never heard of the Giants! Now I want to see them, too! Must be quite a spectacle. Must google it ;)


I would love to hear from you, please leave a comment.