“It’s about theater as a shared experience and I’ve never seen anything quite like it.”—Tony Reekie, Bank of Scotland’s Children’s Festival Director
A remarkable interactive show for families, The Japanese Garden/The CCC (Children’s Cheering Carpet) Project will be performed five times at the Wexner Center Friday–Sunday May 23–25, 2008 as the culmination of the Wexner Center’s 2007-08 International Performing Arts Series for Families. For this magic carpet ride—intended for ages 4 and up—Italy’s Compagnia T.P.O. constructs a carpet stage complete with Bonsai trees, flowers, water, stones, a Zen garden, and other elements of the Japanese garden. In this sensorial journey, performers and audiences “animate” the carpet with digital images and sounds that react to the pressure of the feet or body. The performance begins with the story about how this garden was born. Then the audience members are invited to sit around the carpet while a dancer animates the five gardens of the original story—followed by an invitation for children to explore and animate the gardens themselves. The public will also be able to interact with the carpet May 20–25 during normal gallery hours and between shows.
“This celebratory, socially interactive show will surely be unlike anything area children have experienced,” says Kendra Meyer, educator for youth programs and co-organizer of the series. “We’re expecting tickets to go fast to this wonderful, innovative show.”
The company will also be performing several private shows at the Wexner Center for area school groups.
For more than two decades, T.P.O. (Teatro d'Piazza o d'Occasione) based in Prata, Italy, has distinguished itself as a “visual theater company,” and The Children’s Cheering Carpet is one of its crowning achievements. More information on the company: www.tpo.it, with a photo gallery here.
Now in its third year, the Wexner Center’s International Performing Arts Series for Families featured France’s Echoa in October and three sold-out shows by Columbus’s Robert Post in February. This series exposes children to contemporary theater, music, and dance, as well as to other cultures.
CALENDAR INFORMATION FOR JAPANESE GARDEN/THE CCC (CHILDREN’S CHEERING CARPET) PROJECT: Performances are Friday, May 23, at 7 pm; Saturday, May 24 at 11 am and 2 pm; and Sunday, May 25 at 12:30 and 3:30 pm in the Wexner Center Performance Space, 1871 N. High St. Tickets are $10 for members, $8 for children under 12 and $14 for the general public. The show runs for approximately 50 mins. The Carpet will be on view to the public Tuesday–Sunday, May 20–25 during the Wexner Center’s regular gallery hours and between shows (admission is free). Contact the education department at (614) 292-6493 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule a group tour of the carpet. Moore public info: wexarts.org.
The Japanese Garden is presented by ArKtype in association with Crying Out Loud UK and directed by Francesco Gandi and Davide Venturini.
Major support for the Wexner Center’s 2007–08 education season is generously provided by Battelle.
The Wexner Center’s 2008 International Performing Arts Series for Families is presented with generous support from Nationwide, Target, Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams, the Corporate Annual Fund of the Wexner Center Foundation, and Wexner Center members.
Promotional support is provided by Columbus Parent.
Youth and family programs are presented with support from Bob Evans Farms, Cardinal Health, and Time Warner Cable, Corporate Annual Fund of the Wexner Center Foundation, and Wexner Center members.