tree bark, lichen-draped branch, starling feathers, stones, acrylic paint
Artist Rima Staines and Storyteller Tom Hirons want to build a theatre-on-wheels to live in, travel with, and bring magic across England. This is a vision that deserves support.
“With its drop-down stage, fancy awning and proscenium arch,” Tom & Rima say, “Hedgespoken will serve as a stage wherever it goes. Whether it’s us telling tales and making mischief with handmade puppet shows, or it’s other actors, musicians or sword-swallowers using the stage-space as part of a Hedgespoken Travelling Show, our aim is to spread a little old magic by doing what we love.
“Hedgespoken has the wherewithal to act as a mini-theatre, a cabaret stage or acoustic music venue, anywhere. Perhaps your village green, or that disused urban space, wayside or park –Hedgespoken arrives, makes magic, plants seeds of imagination, and then leaves, in the tradition of wandering bards, travelling storytellers and itinerant puppet theatres and circuses that are so much part of our heritage.”
“At times, the puppet shares with the mask a power to give form to gods and demons, to the spirits of the dead….In such cases the manipulator, even the puppet itself, can take on the guise of a priest or shaman.”
“Puppet theatre is a highly refined art, but depends on something like a child’s, a clown’s, or a mad person’s relation to objects…They are dead things that belong to a different kind of life.”
(Kenneth Gross, Puppet: An Essay on Uncanny Life)