And we’ve got some fun pictures to show you!
We of the Peripatetic Players are influenced by a great many groundbreaking works of art and legendary theatrical ensembles, which inform both our process and our craft. One of the most seminal of these is surely The Muppets — and for Shakespeare and Space Wars, no Muppet episode is more resonant with our own creation than “Pigs in Space with Luke Skywalker”
I particularly love Piggy’s classic handling of the inappropriate comments about her weight — it’s clear she’s had to develop an iron-fist style of management to keep the show on track. Perhaps Mr. Peaches could learn a few things.
But that’s not all… the stars of Star Wars appear in the entire Muppet Show episode, number 17 from Season 4 of the show, and perform a spectacular dance number at the end.
And, many years and one corporate purchase later, Muppets cast as Star Wars characters to create mashed-up action figures have striking similarities to the casting of Peripatetic Players as both Muppets and Star Wars personalities. Gonzo as Darth Vader? Beaker as C3PO? Obviously. And make special note of the Storm Troopers…
We have our own ideas as to which Peripatetic Players correspond to various Muppets… some of them are definitely reflected above.
Which Muppets do you think most accurately reflect Peripatetic Players?
Thumper has been lobbying the Players to determine how they’d cast themselves in Thumper’s adaptation of Star Wars, named Space Wars. You’ll have to see the show to find out who’s who!
Rebecca and Joan — who when not embodying Mdme. Directrix and Thumper, respectively, are the SPPP’s producing organization, Idiot String — sat down after one of the final Aesop Amuck rehearsals with none other than Sam Bertken (a.k.a. Meekins) to talk about their inspirations for both Aesop Amuck and the Peripatetic Players’ debut adventure, O Best Beloved.* Sam writes for S.F. Theater Pub,** a great blog about theatre and the independent theatre scene in the Bay Area that is run by producer, playwright & director Stuart Bousel.
We talked about influences like Mercer Mayer & Maurice Sendak, the Muppets, and Medieval & Renaissance theatre, as well as why performing on FluxWagon and breaking the fourth wall are so important to us. Read the interview here!
*Please note there are a couple words bleeped out with asterisks in this article that, if unbleeped, would be inappropriate for young audiences!
**Please also note that the content of S.F. Theatre Pub in general is aimed at adult audiences, and some topics elsewhere on the site may not be appropriate for kiddos.
Guess what else?
There’s still time to donate to our Kickstarter Campaign — until late Monday night!
We’re now just over halfway to our Kickstarter goal of $2500, with 10 days to go. If you’ve been meaning to throw in your support, now’s the time! Click here to go to Kickstarter — if only to watch the video. If you’ve already given, THANK YOU! Here’s a list of our wonderful supporters!
Because of your generous support, we’ve been able to add some bells and whistles to FluxWagon, like her new trapdoor and Aesop-appropriate paint job.
Your support is also invaluable to less photogenic but essential endeavors, like making insurance payments, buying gas, and renting trucks to tow Fluxie.
You also help ensure the Peripatetic Players can get paid! They’re super photogenic, actually.
It’s true! We are underway with modifications to makeover FluxWagon for her new adventures with Aesop’s Fables. She’ll still be the same lovely red-and-yellow on the outside, with colorful worlds on the inside. But the Fables require a much more pastoral setting than the exotic locales of the Kipling tales we told in O Best Beloved. Allow the Players to tell you more:
And you can help! Just click on over to our new Kickstarter campaign, where any amount will help not only get FluxWagon ready to roll, but pay for boring things like insurance, park permits, and artists’ rent.
How did this frog get so big? Through her own folly, I’m afraid…
She’s from The Frogs and the Ox, and she’s trying to make herself as big as an ox. It doesn’t turn out well.
In fact, the frogs always seem to be coming up with bad ideas… Like, for instance, in The Frogs Who Wished for a King or The Frog and the Mouse. Unlike the mice, who come up with bad ideas after a lot of thought and deliberation in their mouse councils, the frogs just don’t seem to think things through. Naturally, this leads to plenty of mishaps for the frogs.
What with all that running in fear and being prone to mishaps, we see some great opportunities for slapstick. That might be why the Frog sections of Aesop Amuck are some of the most hilarious to rehearse.
Thanks to the Library of Congress, many of Aesop’s fables are online in a gorgeous, interactive edition with illustrations by Milo Winter.
Google Books also has many electronic editions of Aesop collections, including a free public domain volume illustrated by Harrison Weir.
There’s a searchable collection at www.aesopfables.com, which also includes fairy tales from Hans Christian Andersen and others. This is likely the most extensive collection, and you’ll find many fables that are nearly identical but with slight variations in the details.
Who was Aesop anyway? Wikipedia can tell you a little more about who he might have been. But no writings attributed directly to “Aesop” survive. We do know that many philosophers and poets, including Aristophanes and Sophocles, knew of Aesop’s stories; Sophocles composed some of them into verse poems. We also know Aesop didn’t write down any of the morals; the lesson of each story was thought to be clear without articulating it, but later authors have added them and today we recognize many familiar aphorisms in the morals of “Aesop’s Fables.”
And for more images, head to Wikimedia Commons for a wealth of public domain illustrations from historical editions of the fables.