The UNIMA 2008 Festival and Congress, taking place in Perth, Western Australia 2 -12 April 2008, will launch their 'World Puppetry Day' with The Million Puppet Project during which schools and organisations throughout Australia will be building puppets to create the world´s largest puppet display - to promote both the day and the forthcoming world festival of puppetry in Australia. If you have a puppet handy, take to the streets tomorrow to march in solidarity with puppeteers and artists all over the world that believe that this magical metaphor can promote world peace and unity!
Report from Australia just published:
Launched on World Puppetry Day, the Million Puppet Project, an initiative of Perth’s own Spare Parts Puppet Theatre, is a year long event culminating on April 6, 2008 that invites people from around the world to make and send a puppet to Perth to create a display for a new Guinness World Record - The World’s Largest Puppet Exhibition - at the Perth Concert Hall.
Launched by the Western Australian Minister of Tourism, Culture & the Arts, Sheila McHale, the Million Puppet Project will generate national and international interest in the lead up to the UNIMA 2008 :: 20th UNIMA Congress & World Puppetry Festival being held in Perth from April 2 to 12 in 2008, for the first time outside the Southern Hemisphere. An ‘Olympics of puppetry’, UNIMA 2008 will include International theatre performances, conferences, exhibitions, workshops and master classes with over 1000 delegates joining hundreds of thousands of local residents in a feast of puppetry arts.
Harvie Krumpet and his Oscar-winning creator, Adam Elliot were named as International Ambassadors of the project. Mr Elliot said he and Harvie were very proud to be ambassadors and urged everyone to get involved. “Puppetry is a much loved and important part of the entertainment industry,” he said. “We want everyone to make as many puppets as possible. Let your imagination run wild, get those creative juices flowing and you never know you might end up winning an Oscar!”
Artistic Director of Spare Parts Puppet Theatre, Philip Mitchell said that the event was a celebration of the imaginative genius of the puppetry art form. “Puppetry throughout history the world over has played an incredible role in our creativity,” he said. “It is a universal language shared by all ages. We are thrilled that Perth will be the centre of such a creative and fun-filled event. Already we have expressions of excitement from Asia, Africa, Europe and the Americas – the count is on!”
UNIMA (Union Internationale de la Marionette) is a member of the UNESCO family of NGOs. The Million Puppet Project is supported by Lotterywest, the City of Perth, Department for Culture & the Arts, Events Corp and Perth Convention Bureau. Spare Parts Puppet Theatre won the bid to host the 20th Unima Congress and Puppetry Festival (UNIMA 2008) when the event was held in Croatia in 2004.
Spare Parts Puppet Theatre is Australia’s leading puppetry company creating entertaining and inspirational theatre for young people and their families. In 2006, the company celebrated 25 years of creating Australian Puppetry works of excellence that entertain, inform and unleash our imagination.