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TICKETS Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh 0131 228 1404


Traverse 1 Performances £16.50/13.50/8.50 Traverse 2 Performances £13.50/10.50/8.50 Screenings £8.50 Film pass £15 3 Show Pass £42 Full Festival Pass £156 For other manipulate venues’ tickets and box office information please contact: Dance Base, Edinburgh 0131 225 5525

As well as presenting the best international work which we can find, manipulate has always supported the creative development of Scottish theatre-makers and the showcasing of their work. We are delighted that in our tenth year 50% of the theatre programme has been home-grown by artists of the calibre of Al Seed, Company of Wolves, Melanie Jordan, Sita Pieraccini and Tortoise In A Nutshell.

The Lemon Tree, Aberdeen 01224 641 122 Tron Theatre, Glasgow 0141 552 4267

In addition, through our Snapshots: Artists@Work series and Testroom – a new initiative we have developed with support from National Theatre of Scotland – we are so pleased to showcase the work in progress and initial creative ideas of a further fourteen projects being developed by Scottish artists.

Norwich Puppet Theatre 01603 615 564 Tobacco Factory Theatres, Bristol 0117 902 0344

With an additional six brilliant, prize-winning productions created by leading companies from Belgium, Canada, England, France and Spain, as well as two animation programmes featuring the best of the animation we have screened over the past decade, we invite you to enter a captivating and vibrant world of great Scottish and international visual theatre and animated film. Simon Hart Artistic Director Rosie Priest Administrator Jen White Festivals & Projects Manager

The Herald

Thanks Puppet Animation Scotland is a small organisation and we would like to thank our festivals partners, volunteers, Board members and staff, both past and present, for providing their commitment, expertise and enthusiasm. Andy Catlin Festival Photographer Stephen Moir Phonotrope Artist Colin Purves Festival Films Producer D8 Brochure Design J Thomson Colour Printers Printer Whispers/Compagnie Mossoux-Bonté Cover Image

@manipulatefest #manipulate

Puppet Animation Scotland


“…showcasing the work of some of the most innovative theatre artists and animators working in Scotland and internationally.”




Puppet Animation Scotland – Saturday 28 January Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh – Free, but ticketed

Tortoise in a Nutshell/Scotland – Duration: 70’ Suitable for: 12+ – Saturday 28 January, 7.30pm Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh – Friday 3 February, 7.00pm The Lemon Tree, Aberdeen


To celebrate manipulate’s 10th anniversary we invite you to a series of self-contained free events through the afternoon. In between the three Snapshots: Artists@ Work slots - in which Scottish theatre artists present a flavour of their current creative explorations and experiments, Stephen Moir returns with Phonotrope, Robbie Thomson presents his performative installation The Influencing Machine, as well as continuous short films screenings from Edinburgh College of Art’s Animation Department. Come to one event, or come to them all, you decide!

EAT ME Plain Sight/Scotland Duration: 40’ | Suitable for: 16+ | 2.00pm An image-based piece of theatre about a woman who uses the dark web to find someone to eat her. Eat Me explores the ubiquitous consumption of female bodies in everyday society, the darker nature of sexual gratification and the shifting complexities of power in gender relationships.

Puppet Animation Scotland – Duration: 50’ Suitable for: 12+ – Saturday 28 January, 6.00pm Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh – Monday 30 January, 7.00pm Tron Theatre, Glasgow – Free, but ticketed

Many men go fishing all their lives without knowing that it is not just fish they are after Henry David Thoreau On a vast cascading ocean, a tiny boat is tossed through rolling waves and thundering storms, a speck amidst immense and turbulent seas. Steadily rowing onward into the nothingness is a fisherman, driven by despair, sailing to nowhere with all his worldly possessions. As the darkness looms he prepares to end it all and leap. But before he can jump out of his boat, something else jumps in, a mass of colour, an uninvited guest who has finally broken through the sea’s surface to discover what lies above.

Fisk is a story of a man and a fish, and the unexpected impact they have upon one another. Examining themes of depression, dependence and desolation, Fisk is an exploration of the lengths we can go to in order to escape from ourselves, yet also finds joy in even the deepest and darkest of depths. Founded in 2010, Tortoise in a Nutshell is a multi award-winning visual theatre company based in Edinburgh with a steadily growing international profile and reputation, already presenting its work in Austria, Denmark, Mexico and Switzerland. The company first appeared at manipulate in 2011, presenting The Last Miner. An international co-production between Danish new writing centre Teater Katapult and Scottish theatre company, Tortoise in a Nutshell. Presented in association with Macrobert Arts Centre, Stirling. This production has some dialogue in Danish and English.

Since the beginning of October last year the following five groups of selected Scottish theatre artists have been meeting on Monday evenings. Their brief: to use the other practitioners in the room as a sounding board to nurture and develop their initial creative ideas. Facilitated by leading puppeteer Gavin Glover, the accent from start to finish was on showing, not telling. The aim: for each group to present 3-5 minutes of work at manipulate.

CLOTH Eve Klein & Sons/Canada Duration: 45’ | Suitable for: 14+ | 3.00pm

THE BODY IN SHADOW Choral Jam/Scotland Duration: 40’ | Suitable for: 14+ | 4.00pm

Bed – the most intimate and vulnerable of places. An authentic physical exploration of a woman’s dreams, relationships, of her deepest and most private of selves. Created in her bedroom, Cloth is Tiffany Soirat’s first solo piece and winner of the Edinburgh Student Arts Festival 2016: Best Performer Award. 6

A visual, non-text based performance. Grounded in the interplay of shadow theatre, ensemble work and selected physical theatre techniques, this performance explores the chemical, mathematical and scientific fabric of human connection and love - love as endurance, love as science and love as psychosis.

A HOT HEART AND A COLD EYE/Naomi O Kelly The early stages of a radical re-interpretation of a W B Yeats play, experimenting with storytelling, animation of objects and images, dance, shadow theatre, text, music, music videos and projected film. CAITLIN JO 4 EVA/Lynda Radley & Nick Bone Focusing on the interaction between puppet and performer, an exploration of the challenges faced by a teenage girl having been adopted as a young child.

PAN/Fergus Dunnet An exploration through large scale puppetry of how consciously and unconsciously our primal fears affect the decisions we make and the actions we take in our lives. SHUTTER/Ellie Griffiths Inspired by naff baby photo shoots and child beauty pageants, the early stages of the creation of a table top production for young audiences using puppetry, collage and live-feed projection of miniature worlds. THE TIME MACHINE/Caitlin Skinner & Melanie Jordan Experiments, using puppetry and object manipulation, in the creation of the Eloi and Morlocks characters in H G Wells novel, for a planned production in 2017. Testroom is a Puppet Animation Scotland Programme created with support from the National Theatre Of Scotland.

10 YEARS: manipulate Animation Programme 1 Duration: 70’ Suitable for 12+ – Saturday 28 January, 9.00pm Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh

To celebrate manipulate’s 10th anniversary we present a selection of some of the best short animated films we have screened over the past decade:

Three jazz musicians constantly interrupted as they try to rehearse, squabbling flatmates and the challenges of asking the unpopular one to leave, a poignant allegory about forced movements of populations in eastern Europe in the aftermath of World War Two, music videos with striking combinations of sound and images, the beguiling medieval legend of a lost town, and a whole lot more. Brilliant, challenging, inspiring award-winning animation by leading artists from around the world.


WHISPERS Compagnie Mossoux-Bonté/Belgium – Duration: 55’ Suitable for: 16+ – Monday 30 January, 7.30pm Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh

UK Premiere A woman alone. Or perhaps not. A Vermeer-inspired silhouette who tirelessly leaves and returns to the same central spot, evoking and inhabiting the shades of people long gone. Furtive presences, muffled sounds and finally phantomlike figures, with intentions that are at the very least unclear, materialize suddenly, whispering in our ears, like the guardians of many secrets. Combining contemporary dance, physical theatre and allusive narratives in its distinctive style, Compagnie Mossoux-Bonté’s new production also features a dynamic and immersive soundscape created through the performance. Existing within this singular, dream-like world the woman struggles to stop an irreparable past from disturbing the present. All she wants is to wake up to a dawn not marred by endless night.


For almost thirty years Compagnie Mossoux-Bonté has presented its innovative and challenging dance theatre with great success around the world. Its production Light was the very first manipulate performance in 2008 and since then the company has also presented Twin Houses and Kefum Nahum at previous festivals.

Compagnie La Pendue/France – Duration: 50’ Suitable for: 8+ – Saturday 28 January, 7.00pm The Lemon Tree, Aberdeen – Monday 30 January, 9.00pm Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh

This production has no spoken dialogue.

UK Premiere The oldest, and most famous puppet in the world, what is his name? Polichinelle in France, Punch in England, Pulcinella in Italy, Petrushka in Russia, Kasperl in Germany, Don Cristobal in Spain, Karagöz in Turkey, Karaghiosis in Greece, Mamulengo in Brazil... Already alive and kicking in 18th century Naples, this crazy, insolent, larger than life Neapolitan runt embodies the contradictions that audiences have laughed at and related to ever since. Both naive and tricky, obscene and romantic, fearful and brave, rascal and philosopher, at its best this character speaks to us still. Because Polichinelle laughs at everything. Even death.



If you only ever see one Polichinelle/Punch/ Pulcinella/Petrushka/Kasperl/Don Christobal/ Karagöz/ Karaghiosis/Mamulengo booth show in your life, make it this one. Welcome to the hilarious frenzy of La Pendue’s anarchic, supremely virtuosic, brilliantly contemporary version of this character’s 400 year old story. Since its premiere nine years ago La Pendue has performed Poli Dégaine to great acclaim over 800 times in more than 30 countries around the world, from cobbled town squares in the oldest of Europe’s towns to the most modern and exalted of cultural theatre spaces in the Far East. Come and find out why... This production has spoken dialogue. It is very easy to understand though as the visual language of puppetry is universal.


THE END OF THINGS Company of Wolves/Scotland – Duration: 75’ Suitable for: 14+ – Tuesday 31 January, 7.30pm Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh

World Premiere The four horsemen of the apocalypse. A wild celebration of catastrophe. A red row of numbers counting down to zero. Awake at 5.00am on your friend’s mum’s sofa. What is the end? How did we get here? And what happens after? As we explore endings and our alltoo-human reluctance to embrace change – Come for the party, the booze, the fag ends and red lipstick. Come for laddered tights and mushroom clouds. For ticking time bombs, lost opportunities and the heat-death of the universe.

Watch, as the pin is pulled from the grenade, as the sands of time run out, as the unsuspecting foot steps on the cruel banana skin. Come for the sheer pleasure of chaos and redemption. Come and see what might lie at the end of things. Company of Wolves is a laboratory theatre company based in Glasgow, experimenting and improvising with elements of theatre, dance, music and physicality to create work which challenges, questions and inspires. This is Company of Wolves’ first appearance at manipulate. This production has some spoken dialogue.

LA CAUSEUSE (THE LOVESEAT) Sens Equivoc/Canada – Duration: 45’ Suitable for: 13+ – Tuesday 31 January, 9.00pm Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh – Thursday 2 February, 7.30pm Tobacco Factory Theatres, Bristol

European Premiere Steeped in solitude and without a word, a young woman guides us through poignant and darkly comic dialogues as she revisits the shreds and memories of a sordid and doomed romance. As wandering hands seduce and frolic, she dances and wrestles with the enigmatic ghosts of her inner world. Created and performed by Olivia Faye Lathuillière, La Causeuse is a brilliantly virtuosic physical theatre piece at the crossroads of dance, mime, physical and object theatre, describing purely through what we see a vividly poetic world of intrigue and uncertainty. Sens Equivoc is a visual performance collective based in France and Canada and is directed by Olivia Faye Lathuillière. Olivia’s work is greatly inspired by the pedagogy and process of Jacques Lecoq. Seamlessly combining elements of movement, dance and acting in her work, Olivia has performed and collaborated with leading companies in Europe and North America. This production has no spoken dialogue.



Thank you to all the organisations who supported the development and creation of the artists’ work presented during manipulate:

‘…one of Scotland’s least celebrated but most ambitious festivals, a superb international meeting of artists who explore the outer limits of physical form and perception with dazzling visual invention, whether through light, film, puppetry, or the almost-naked human body, alone on stage…’ The Scotsman

manipulate Visual Theatre Festival and our visiting companies gratefully acknowledge the support of the following partners and organisations:


World Premiere

Sita Pieraccini/Scotland – Duration: 50’ Suitable for: 12+ – Wednesday 1 February 9.00pm Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh

The shimmering heat of tropical hills, and the purring and humming of plains set the scene for a young woman’s journey as she strives to reconnect with her identity and the world in which she lives. Caught in an elaborate game of call and response with a shape-shifting being which only comes to life at night, the woman struggles to find her echo in a world of repetition. Inspired by an artist residency in Sri Lanka and featuring elements of local folk songs, Make A HOO combines vivid sonic environments with striking projected


imagery and dynamic physicality to weave together the story of a day and a night in the life of this young woman - an embodied exploration of loss, identity and environmental instability. Modern folklore with a symphonic twist. Sita Pieraccini is an actor, singer and theatre artist based in Scotland, with a background in visual art and music. During 2016 Sita presented her first solo piece Bird at manipulate and the production was also a part of the Made In Scotland programme at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. This production has no spoken dialogue.

UK Premiere An actor, a table, a camera. Dozens of objects used to design and conjure up an unusual collection of imaginary cities. Built by the actor before our eyes, each city provides a vivid potential alternative narrative about our own contemporary society and the challenges we face.

Théâtre De La Pire Espéce/Canada – Duration: 80’ Suitable for: 12+ – Recently for the first time in history the world’s urban Friday 27 January, 7.00pm population surpassed the number of its rural inhabitants. This The Lemon Tree, Aberdeen gradual, unstoppable shift of communities and individuals has – transformed our relationship to the physical space and the Wednesday 1 February 7.30pm people around us. Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh – With each city acting as metaphor or symbol, Cities offers us Friday 3 February, 7.30pm partial but precise X-rays of our human social organizations, Norwich Puppet Theatre revealing the various secret collective obsessions and cancers that can devour us all. This diverse collection of cities also helps us to identify and name our hopes for change and a better future. Since 1999 leading Quebecois company La Pire Espéce has created and toured nineteen productions to great acclaim around the world, harnessing puppetry, object theatre, technology, clowning, cabaret and street theatre. This is the company’s first visit to manipulate. This production has spoken dialogue. 16


TOUCH ME Sandman/Belgium – Duration: 55’ Suitable for: 16+ – Thursday 2 February, 7.30pm Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh

European Premiere In those personal peripheries where you can dance with your shadow, where being naked can flow seamlessly into being masked, Touch Me articulates through a chain of metamorphoses the many facets of intimacy - the tenderness, the hardness, the vulnerability, the loneliness, but also the beauty and the solace - of these most private of places. In a no-time atmosphere, image, time and space mingle and switch. A non-taboo playing with form and content, Touch Me asks: What can intimacy do to oneself, to one’s body, to one’s self-image? And what


happens if your intimacy clashes with someone else’s? Sabine Molenaar, a virtuosic physical and dance theatre performer of rare presence and flexibility, presented her first solo awardwinning production That’s It during manipulate 2015. Touch Me contains nudity, strong language, sexual content and strobe lighting. This production has some spoken dialogue.

10 YEARS: manipulate Animation Programme 2 Duration: 70’ Suitable for: 12+ – Thursday 2 February, 9.00pm Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh

To celebrate manipulate’s 10th anniversary we present a selection of some of the best short animated films we have screened over the past decade: A band that only gets to play once, the particular challenges of love and life for cats in Japan, weird and wonderful music video images, the deconstruction of a classic movie narrative through virtuosic splicing of 1940’s film noir, collage and animation, an evocative portrait of a bygone era of 20th century heavy industry, the heartbreak of caring for loved ones, those jazz musicians still trying to rehearse, and a whole lot more. Brilliant, challenging, inspiring award-winning animation by leading artists from around the world.


SNAPSHOTS: ARTISTS@WORK Puppet Animation Scotland – Duration: 50’ Suitable for: 16+ – Thursday 2 January, 6.00pm Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh – Free, but ticketed Smile, what’s the use of crying? Is stop-frame animation really boring and laborious? An ancient myth about man’s determination to fly turned into a modern celebration of spectacular failure. Can puppets do science? A wistful tale about how our lives slowly evaporate once we leave... Five short excerpts of work in the process of being created. Presented by Faux Theatre with Dylan Read, BAFTA-winning animator Ainslie Henderson, Fringe Firstwinning company Tortoise In A Nutshell, science educator extraordinaire Doctor Bunhead, and graduates and students from Scotland’s only fulltime physical theatre course, based at Summerhall in Edinburgh.

SANITISE Jordan & Skinner/Scotland – Duration: 50’ Suitable for: 14+ – Friday 3 February, 9:00pm Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh

One woman, alone in her bathroom. The outside world is disgusting but her bathroom is a wipe-clean sanctuary to escape to, to hide in, to worship. In this most private of spaces she can flush away dirt in an instant. But, there is something lurking beneath the bath, the sort of thing you wouldn’t want anyone else to see. As her inner and outer worlds collide we discover a woman living on the edge of fantasy, where it is all too easy to be completely consumed by her fears - what is clean and what is dirty?

Exploring our most intimate insecurities and our darkest fantasies, Sanitise is a darkly playful production without words combining physical theatre, dance, music and animation. Melanie Jordan and Caitlin Skinner are award winning theatre makers based in Edinburgh. They make playful visual theatre which aims to ask questions, both the small niggly ones and the big scary ones. Sanitise won a Scotsman Fringe First in 2014 and was an Arches Brick Award nominee. Sanitise contains sexual content. This production has no spoken dialogue.

A HOUSE IN ASIA Agrupación Señor Serrano/Spain – Duration: 60’ Suitable for: 12+ – Friday 3 February, 7:30pm Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh

UK Premiere Geronimo is hiding in a house in Pakistan. An exact copy of this house stands in a military base in North Carolina, USA, and a film is being shot in a second exact copy of that house in Jordan. Three houses, three realities, but only one of them is true. The largest manhunt in history. A sheriff obsessed with a white whale. His enigmatic quarry wanted dead or alive. The boy band Take That preparing for a historic mission. Cowboys and Indians. A twist in the American dream. A scenic Western creating a satirical pop-culture portrait of the decade following 9/11, a decade which seeded the 21st century. Founded in Barcelona in 2006, Agrupación Señor Serrano has become celebrated throughout Europe for its dynamic trademark theatrical language which uses stage performers, film projections and editing in real time, scale models and immersive sound worlds. In 2015 at the Venice Biennale the company was awarded the Silver Lion. This production has some spoken dialogue.



OOG Al Seed/Scotland – Duration: 40’ Suitable for 12+ – Saturday 4 February, 7.30pm Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh

The end of a war. A locked cellar. A beam of light. The fractured mind of a shell-shocked soldier. An intensely physical and poetic exploration of the trauma of conflict and violence, and the psychological damage it inflicts. Featuring Guy Veale’s powerful and visceral soundtrack, Oog burns indelible images onto the mind as it questions what happens when humans morph into something different, something less than human. Based in Glasgow, Al Seed has been a significant pioneer and champion of physical theatre in Scotland over the last fifteen years. As well as winning Fringe First and Herald Angel awards for his work Al was a founding member of Vanishing Point Theatre Company and formerly an Artist in Residence at The Arches. Over the past decade Al has also collaborated as performer and director with leading companies across the UK, as well as with Russia’s BlackSkyWhite and Derevo. Oog won a Total Theatre Award at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2015. This production contains no spoken dialogue.

COULROPHOBIA Pickled Image/England – Duration: 70’ Suitable for 16+ – Saturday 4 February, 9.00pm Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh

Scottish Premiere Dik & Adam are clowns, trapped in a cardboard world. They couldn’t fight their way out of a paper bag, let alone this surreal world made of cardboard. Why are they there? And what are they supposed to be doing? Dik and Adam know that something sinister is afoot...well they are wearing really big silly shoes... and they need, they absolutely have to escape before it’s too late. Join them on a ridiculous, anarchic, slapstick, brilliantly funny, often hysterical and occasionally terrifying quest for freedom...and release your inner coulrophobia. Pickled Image specialises in stretching audiences’ preconceptions about the art of puppetry, particularly in its productions for adult audiences. Since its inception in 2000 the company has won numerous awards and gained widespread international recognition for its powerful and darkly humorous visual productions. Coulrophobia contains disappointing nudity, strong language...and A LOT of cardboard. This production has spoken dialogue.



In object theatre it’s in the material itself, more than anything else, that one finds the meaning of the work. The task of the work’s creator, and then the performer, is to reveal this meaning. To say a lot with the minimal of means – this is the essence of an art form that has an unlimited power of evocation.

Olivier Ducas/Canada – Sunday 29 – Tuesday 31 January 10.00am – 5.00pm Dance Base, Edinburgh – Saturday 4 – Sunday 5 February 10.00am – 5.00pm Norwich Puppet Theatre

Using his experience as the creator and performer of Theatre De La Pire Espéce’s production Cities as inspiration, Olivier Ducas’ workshop offers participants the opportunity, through exercises and shared work, to recognize the poetic capacity of objects. Participants will experiment with the creation of simple texts which complement the objects used, as well as mastering the relationships between actor and objects. Using a language which merges text, image, sound and acting each participant will create their own “city” – a short stage performance which is vivid and precise - a finely sculpted theatrical piece. Since 1999 Olivier Ducas has worked as founder, director and performer with leading Quebecois company La Pire Espèce, creating and touring nineteen productions to great acclaim around the world. Olivier’s work synthesises, in a dynamic and fluid way, puppetry, object theatre, technology, clowning, cabaret and street theatre.

Using video and CCTV cameras, projectors and simple technology, participants will explore objects, materials, puppets and the human body and, by combining these discoveries with more traditional and improvised forms of performance, discover a new creative hybrid - Micro Cinema Theatre. Participants will unlock the tiny details and discover the hidden movements which are normally lost in a theatre space and, by playing with scale, focus, light, sound and music, articulate and explore new 2 and 3 dimensional worlds. Some objects have more metaphor and meaning than others so participants will try to discover which materials work best for the stories which are trying to be told. 26

This workshop is suitable for actors, dancers, designers, puppeteers, visual artists and directors who are interested in developing multidisciplinary skills and understanding when creating work at the intersection of these different art forms and technologies. Gavin Glover was a founder and director/performer of faultyoptic Theatre of Animation, the groundbreaking UK company, which toured its surreal and unique adult puppet shows throughout the world to great acclaim. More recently Gavin has worked for the National Theatre of Scotland as the Associate Designer on A Christmas Carol and The Tin Forest, as well as making and training a huge pterodactyl for the Citizens Theatre.

MICRO CINEMA THEATRE: A VIDEO CAMERA & PERFORMANCE WORKSHOP Gavin Glover/UK – Wednesday 1 – Friday 3 February 10.00am – 5.00pm Dance Base, Edinburgh


DAILY DIARY, Edinburgh



Saturday 28th January

FISK 7.30PM Page 8




Puppet Animation Scotland is a registered charity (SC020042)

Sunday 29th January

Monday 30th January

WHISPERS 7.30PM Page 10



Tuesday 31st January




Wednesday 1st February

CITIES 7.30PM Page 16

MAKE A HOO 9.00PM Page 17


Thursday 2nd February

TOUCH ME 7.30PM Page 18

ARTISTS @ WORK 6.00PM Page 20


10 YEARS: manipulate ANIMATION PROGRAMME 2 9.00PM Page 21 Friday 3rd February

A HOUSE IN ASIA 7.30PM Page 22

SANITISE 9.00PM Page 23

Saturday 4th February

OOG 7.30PM Page 24



manipulate visual theatre festival 2017  

Brochure with listings for the tenth manipulate festival in January 2017.

manipulate visual theatre festival 2017  

Brochure with listings for the tenth manipulate festival in January 2017.