Puppeteer/actors Zompopo Flores

Puppeteer/actors Zompopo Flores

Runaway Moon takes new production to Victoria, Salmon Arm

Puppet production 21 Ways to Make the World Last Longer shows at the Spark Festival in Victoria’s Belfry Theatre and at the Shuswap Theatre.

Enderby-Grindrod theatre company Runaway Moon is taking its puppets on the road.

The company, known for its environmental productions and community plays often involving handmade, life-like puppets, is presenting its documentary-style puppet production, 21 Ways to Make the World Last Longer, at the Spark Festival in Victoria’s Belfry Theatre next week.

21 Ways to Make the World Last Longer is a practical, hopeful, and simple tribute to the beauty of humanity,” reads a release about the production, which makes its way to Salmon Arm after the Victoria showing. “This brand new puppet play for youth and adults is a 90-minute funny and dramatic sharing of the kooky and maybe necessary approaches to living on an endangered planet.”

Co-written by Runaway Moon artistic director Cathy Stubington and director James Fagan Tait, who also directed the play Tuwitames for Runaway Moon at the Splatsin Tsm7aksaltn Teaching Centre in Enderby in 2014, this production features 28 puppet characters along with their handlers and live actors.

Puppet makers/operators Stubington and Zompopo Flores are joined by guest performers Fagan Tait, Sarah May Redmond and Tom Jones, who are well known to Runaway Moon and Caravan Farm Theatre audiences.

“Using the magic of Runaway Moon rod puppetry and an eclectic quintet of puppeteers, this production is sure to make you wonder, remember, and reflect,” reads the release.

Runaway Moon has been exploring and performing its particular style of puppet theatre for more than three decades. From its roots in Montreal, and a series of productions at the Caravan Farm Theatre from 1989 to 1998, the company has since been based at Curly Willow Farm in Grindrod. Its shows are often held outdoors in deliberately planted settings of corn, sunflowers, and other vegetables.

“This new play is created for the indoor theatre setting, allowing the puppeteers to disappear in the dark while the puppet world comes alive in the imaginations of the audience,” reads the release.

21 Ways to Make the World Last Longer takes the stage at the Shuswap Theatre in Salmon Arm March 31 and April 1 at 7:30 p.m., and April 2 at 2 and 7:30 p.m.

Tickets are available at the Ticket Seller at the Vernon Performing Arts Centre. Call 250-549-7469 or order at ticketseller.ca. In Enderby, tickets can be purchased at Anne C. Casey’s accounting office at 1304 Belvedere St. Call 250-838-0013.