During a workshop titled ‘Wonder Box”
Magic of Puppetry Enthrals Visitors of all Ages at SCRF 2019
Sharjah, 17 April 2019:A group of schoolchildren move along the main corridor taking in the sights and sounds of the venue at the Sharjah Children’s Reading Festival 2019 (SCRF). When they reach the centre of the cavernous hall their attention is drawn to a group of young people manning six wooden boxes placed on stands and covered with a cloth on the side facing them.
The sign says, ‘Wonder Box’. Though packing cases with pictures painted on them, the children are transfixed. They put on the headphones the puppeteers manning the booths offer, flip up the screen and peer through the small peephole which unfolds a magical world that the puppeteers create from behind the box.
Through the peephole the children sees a man sailing on a boat in rough seas. The roar of the ocean turns ominous as something that looks like a yellow sun looms large behind him in the horizon. As the music rises to a crescendo the children realised that the sun is actually the pupil of the eye of some mysterious sea monster that then swallows the petrified sailor.
The members were inspired to stage puppet shows in this format by their parents who had seen such shows as children. “It had died away in the 70s, but we were encouraged to revive it by our parents”.
‘Wonder Box’ will be staged on all days of the SCRF.
True to its tradition, SCRF 2019 is bringing a diverse offering of such shows and interactive workshops to advance children’s knowledge and expand their creative horizons.
The 11-day cultural extravaganza for children and young adults organised by Sharjah Book Authority (SBA) is being held at Expo Centre Sharjah, from April 17–27, under the theme ‘Discover Knowledge’.