Puppet Animation Festival takes over Scottish Storytelling Centre!

Scotland’s Puppet Animation Festival began with 12 events at the Netherbow Theatre on Edinburgh’s Royal Mile, in 1984.

Now, everything from shadow puppets to digital animations get their moment in the spotlight as the Festival has grown throughout Scotland, touring the cream of the puppetry crop throughout the country, with over 100 events at more than 50 venues, showcasing a wealth of puppetry and animation talent.

The Centre carries on the tradition of hosting outstanding puppetry for families with a fantastic programme for this year’s Scotland-wide marionette take over, with fantastic shows like The Man Who Planted Trees and an enticingly imaginative selection of Family Treats: Animated Short Films having already delighted audience, but plenty still to come, including another chance to catch the eclectic film shorts on Sat 18 Apr, which received a 4* review from Edinburgh Guide.

Wednesday 15 April

Squeaking pigs and talking dogs sums up today’s events, with Storybox Theatre presenting 3 Pigs – a pleasing porcine show promising to send magic tingling up the spines of piglets, sows and boars of all ages at 2pm, then at 4.30pm, the fantastic Pixar animation Up gets a screening with the story of grouchy widower Carl Fredricksen, young Scout Russell and Dug, the talking dog obsesses with squirrels and their balloon adventures to the wild of South America.

3 Pigs

Thursday 16 April

Ever wanted to be something you’re not? So has Pitschi, The Kitten with Dreams, who pops out of her kitty basket at 2pm.  Based on Swiss author and illustrator Hans Fischer’s award-winning picture book which has delighted generations of children – and cat lovers – around the world, this Komedia production brings the story to UK audiences in a charming production full of humour, music and adventure.

This is followed up at 4.30pm with the fantastic and multi-award winning film How to Train Your Dragon – exploring a hapless young Viking who aspires to hunt dragons. But when he befriends a young dragon, he learns there may be more to the creatures than he assumed.

Friday 17 April

Tales inspired by China and Ireland are up for grabs at the end of the week as dreams are chased and fears are faced in teh Festival’s performance and film for Friday.

Liang & The Magic Paintbrush at 2pm is an inventive and gentle show with something in it for all the family as we see if dreams can come true for a boy who loves to paint but can’t afford a paintbrush. Crooked Timber Theatre combine puppets, origami, live painting and video images to bring this well-loved Chinese tale to life.

Then the 7th century intricate illustrations of the Irish Book of Kells are brought vividly to life at 4.30pm in an animated action adventure, The Secret of Kells, as 12 year old Brendan takes on Vikings, serpent gods and his darkest fears in his quest to find the crystal and complete the Book of Kells.

Saturday 18 April

Little Princess GoldtreeA Scottish version of Snow White at 2pm and an international section of animated short films at 4.30pm round off the Centre’s Puppet Animation line-up at the theatre where it all started.

Little Princess Goldtree is a wonderful production by Yugen Puppet Company who aim to celebrate Scotland’s rich heritage of traditional stories through retelling with skilful puppetry and magical, animated shadow theatre. With a wicked stepmother, a princes and an all knowing, all seeing magical trout – this is fairytale at its best and guaranteed to please everyone from 4 to 80!

Then an international programme of short films made especially for children is gathered together by the PAF team, with these recent creations varying from 60 seconds to 17 minutes by artists from the UK, Australia, Hungary, Brazil, Germany and America. From a man in a car park dealing with a very angry dog with hilarious consequences through to the touching tale of the effects of immigration on a young Sri Lankan boy, this is an inventive hour guaranteed to keep young and old eyes glued to the screen.

Read review of the Animated Short Films Here

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