The STC will join three local leading arts organizations in presenting a festival celebrating the world-renowned puppeteer. The festival participants–STC, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company and the Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center at the University of Maryland–will host several original productions by the puppeteer who has been described as “one of the most ambitious and imaginative…in contemporary puppetry.”
First commissioned for the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, Petrushka premiered in 2001 and tells the tragic love story of three puppets at a Russian carnival. Petrushka, the clown, falls in love with the winsome Ballerina at first sight. The conniving and rich Moor loves the Ballerina as well, and seduces her with beautiful things. She rejects the earnest advances of Petrushka, who, upset and lonely, confronts the Moor. Have these puppets come to life, or are they merely playing out a story being told?
Reality and magic are woven together by the deft hand of Basil Twist, against the backdrop of a specially created two-piano version of Stravinsky’s original ballet score. Nine hidden puppeteers use a combination of Czech and Japanese techniques to bring the puppets and Basil Twist’s vision to life. The performance opens with an abstract fantasia of puppetry, set to Stravinsky’s Sonata for Two Pianos.