Projects > A Year and a Day 2009


'A Year and a Day' 2009


Following on from the showcase in March, the Youth Group decided to continue exploring Edward Lear's poem and create a production for the Buxton Puppet Festival 2009. This became ‘A Year and A Day’ and ended up as a forty minute extravaganza performed on the Buxton Opera House stage during an Evening of Youth Productions with the Yamabiko-Za Children’s Theatre who were in Buxton on the Buxton Meets Sapporo Again! International Exchange.


The Youth Group were involved at every stage of the project and in every aspect of the production from making puppets, writing the script, choreographing movement, designing and making the set and of course performing. In true Funny Wonders style, the planning and script writing only finished about five minutes before the curtains were opened!


For the show, the Youth Group explored where the Owl and Pussycat went on their quest for a wedding ring over a year and a day in their pea-green boat. We began with experimental Easter workshops with Japanese master puppeteer Nori Sawa and music workshops.

Easter Workshops - Warming Up & Group Work
Easter Workshops - Exploring the Poem
Easter Workshops - Experimenting
Easter Workshops - Performance Skills
Easter Workshops - Performing
Easter Workshops - Performances
Sea Fishing
Djembe Drumming Workshop
Making Workshops

​The piece began with a traditional shadow-puppet theatre performance of Edward Lear’s poem ‘The Owl and the Pussycat’. Their journey took them to the hot, wild African savannah where they encountered fire, bounding antelopes and djembe-playing, masked men and furry creatures; following a wild storm they drifted across the ocean ending up in New York during the autumn fall where they were met by a gigantic, jazz-loving, leaf man; they then journeyed to Antarctica where they met the enigmatic Jack Frost and some tap-dancing penguins; they then travelled to Japan in time for a rare cherry tree blossom and met a dancing geisha. An unknown amount of time later, they arrived on the shore of a mysterious island – the land where the Bong Tree grows (BONG!) and the story of the poem continued with mince and slices of quince and many runcible spoons. For the finale we were joined by local band Purple Cloud of Funk.

Show Rehearsals
Setting Up at the Buxton Opera House
Dress Rehearsal
Performance Finale
An Evening of International Youth Puppet Theatre Programme


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