Peripatetic Illustrations

Hi friends!

Today we’re bringing you some treats from our resident illustrator, Mr. Meekins’ very good friend, Sam Bertken. Sam has been making illustrations for our shows since the very first one, O Best Beloved, before the Peripatetic Players even knew how to peripatet.

For O Best Beloved (2013), Sam drew each of the animals who starred in the stories:

Aesop Amuck (2015) also featured some animal stars:

 

And this year, he’s drawn the pirate Players mid-adventure aboard their ship! Click the image to download a coloring page of your very own!

Print

…here’s how we colored it in for our poster!

Pirate Poster Illustration RGB

There are just FOUR MORE PERFORMANCES of Shiver We Timbersclick here to see the full schedule!

Mom’s Are Great

Let me preface this by saying that having a mom who sews and crafts is amazing.

Let me also preface this by saying that having a mom who is creative is amazing … and dangerous.

Now, let’s blog!

Every year for a Peripatetic Players show, I like to help make our costumes. In O Best Beloved, I made Elly the Elephant’s Tutu, and in Aesop Amuck! I made the Fox hat and tail. This year, I am undertaking the task to make a costume that reflect not only Juliet, but also a certain space princess. Here are two pieces of art that are inspiring me:

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Princess Leia drawing by Cryssycheung, via etsy.

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Juliet costume sketch by Carlo Poggioli and Swavorski.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How would Princess Gwen wear a costume that says both of these characters at the same time? Well, this is where Mom comes in!

My mother is a great seamstress and makeup artist, and has a large stock of old costumes, fabrics, and other goodies. I remembered a box of fabric that I had set aside on a visit that I thought would be good for SPPP, and I asked my mom to send it to me. The box was finally delivered yesterday, and lo and behold… a confetti bomb!

confetti bomb

She got me, and she got me good. Thanks, Mom!

Next up — picking out all of the confetti and starting to sew!

On Adaptations of Children’s Literature…

An interview with Rebecca & Joan

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?

We have three more shows — including today’s 5pm performance in Pleasanton

There’s still time to donate to our Kickstarter Campaign — until late Monday night!

Hola! Ahoj! Bonjour! from Princess Gwen!

Halo everyone! Here is our fourth installment of our “behind-the-scenes/meet our players” series: Princess Gwen!

My journey with the Samuel Peaches Peripatetic Players began on a clear, blue morning a few summers ago. As I was walking through the forest with my best friend Jay Robinson, I heard wonderful music coming through the trees! I followed this beautiful melody and I stumbled upon the Flux Wagon! Boy, was Fluxxie a wonderful sight after my trek through the forest!

Once Samuel accepted me into the Players (maybe it had something to do with the fact that I a) can skin a wild boar in under seven seconds, b) had a bag of gold, or c) I can talk to birds), my first real break (or trial by fire) came as playing Elly the Elephant in How the Elephant Got Her Trunk. As Elly, I got to wear a tutu, travel through the Limpopo River, and head off the Precession of the Equinoxes!

One of the great things about playing Elly was that Meekins played half of the silly animal duos in that story. It is always so electrifying to see what Meekins is going to come up with! Sometimes he retreats back into his memories and gets a little too intense for the kiddos, and when that happens I just let him talk to Jay Robinson and he calms back down.

I think going to the beach would calm everyone down. Don’t you think that taking Flux Wagon to the French Riviera would be amazing? Imagine Fluxxie covered in lavender and cheese! Too bad I can’t eat cheese…

Anyway, thank you all for coming on the lovely adventure with Jay Robinson and myself! I can’t wait for you all to join us one sunny weekend!

Photo by Serena Morelli.

Princess Gwen as Elly in How the Elephant Got Her Trunk in last year’s O Best Beloved.

Thumper Gets Interviewed!

Good Morning All! Here is our third installment of our “behind-the-scenes/meet our players” special: THUMPER!

Samuel Peaches managed to tear Thumper away from making the trapdoor on Flux Wagon to give this interview:

HI! MY NAME IS THUMPER. I WONDER WHAT YOUR NAME IS.

I DIDN’T HAVE TO JOIN SAMUEL PEACHES PERIPATETIC PLAYERS BECAUSE I’M SAMUEL’S SISTER, AND I STOWED AWAY IN HIS TRUNK.

SAMUEL, I HAVE A QUESTION…SAMUEL…SAMUEL…

PERIPATETIC MEANS WANDERING.

HI! MY NAME’S THUMPER. MAYBE YOU’LL TELL ME YOUR NAME AT THE SHOW!

MY FAVORITE FABLE IS CALLED THE LION, THE WITCH AND THE WARDROBE…

MY FAVORITE FABLE IS THE ONE WITH A LION, A WITCH AND A WARDROBE…

MY FAVORITE FABLE IS THE ONE WHERE A LION, A WITCH AND A WARDROBE…

WHAT, SAMUEL?

OK, SAMUEL.

SAMUEL JUST TOLD ME THERE IS NO FABLE WITH A LION, A WITCH AND A WARDROBE IN IT. I THINK THAT WOULD MAKE A GOOD STORY THOUGH.

HI! MY NAME IS THUMPER! YOU ALSO HAVE A NAME!

MY FAVORITE PERSON TO PLAY WITH IS THE TRAP DOOR, WHICH IS NOT ACTUALLY A PERSON, BUT A TRAP DOOR. IF I HAD TO CHOOSE SOMETHING THAT IS A PERSON, I WOULD CHOOSE PRINCESS GWEN AS PRINCESS GWEN, GUY AS GUY, SAMUEL AS MY BROTHER AND MEEKINS AS A FROG. I ALSO LOVE THE LION, THE WITCH AND THE WARDROBE. NONE OF WHICH ARE PEOPLE. WELL, MAYBE THE WITCH. BUT SHE WOULD BE A MAGICAL PERSON, WHICH ISN’T ACTUALLY A REAL PERSON. AND THE WARDROBE IS DEFINITELY NOT A PERSON, LIKE THE TRAP DOOR.

WHAT, SAMUEL?

OK, SAMUEL.

SAMUEL WOULD LIKE ME TO MAKE SURE YOU KNOW THERE IS NO FABLE CALLED OR ABOUT OR STARRING A LION, A WITCH AND A WARDROBE IN THIS PLAY.

HI! MY NAME IS THUMPER! MAYBE YOUR NAME IS ASLAN?

I WOULD LIKE SAMUEL PEACHES PERIPATETIC PLAYERS TO PERFORM THE LION, THE WITCH AND THE WARDROBE.

WHAT, SAMUEL?

I KNOW WE’RE DOING AESOP AMUCK.

I AM JUST SAYING THAT THERE IS A LION IN MANY OF AESOP’S FABLES, AND I ACTUALLY THINK HE WOULD NEED A WARDROBE TO GET DRESSED IN THE MORNING. AND, A WITCH TO MAKE THE WARDROBE MAGICAL.  LIKE MY TRUNK. I DO NOT HAVE A MAGICAL WARDROBE, BUT I DO HAVE A MAGICAL TRUNK. I KNOW IT IS MAGICAL BECAUSE WHEN I WENT IN IT TO STOW AWAY, AND THEN I GOT BACK OUT, I WAS IN A WHOLE NEW WORLD.

I LOVE YOU TOO, SAMUEL.

I KNEW I MADE IT IN SAMUEL’S TROUPE WHEN I GOT TO WEAR THE PITH HELMET AND TELL THE STORY OF HOW THE RHINOCEROS GOT ITS SKIN IN OUR FIRST SHOW, O BEST BELOVED.

THE PLURAL OF RHINOCEROS IS RHINOCEROS.

Photo by Serena Morelli

Thumper with the Rhinoceros Diorama in last year’s production of O Best Beloved.

Hello There from Meekins!

Photo by Serena Morelli.

Hi everyone! Here is the second installment of our “behind-the-scenes/meet our players” special: Meekins!

From Meekins:

Oh boy! Well, uh, I guess… Oh, come on, get it together, Meeks! How hard is to tell your own life story? Well, in my case, as a man who has traveled from coast to coast, sea to shore, polar ice cap to polar ice cap, I can say with total certainty: life can be a real doozy, altogether dark sometimes, unfortunately, but the happiest I’ve ever been was when I was brought in by good ol’ Samuel Peaches and his performing troupe. Ever since then, all the misadventures with Mole People, unnecessary abductions while lost out in cornfields, and head-to-head battles with mother sea lions are a thing of the past! Now, I just PRETEND to get in fights with animals, and I couldn’t be happier for it.

Oh, here I go, rambling again. The way I joined the Samuel Peaches’ Peripatetic Players was straightforward enough: tasked by a mysterious witch doctor to return a crystalline skull that would presumably imbue with great power, I was kidnapped by headhunters along the rushing Amazon River. There, it seemed, they aimed to make a sacrifice to their elder gods, and had me fully trussed up like a Thanksgiving turkey! It wasn’t looking good for ol’ Meeks just then, I’ll have you know (although, I have escaped from much gnarlier situations)! Right about that time when I was beginning to maybe start saying my prayers, out of the brush came bounding the same wagon you see before you today, and atop it, seemingly having lost control, was the man himself- Samuel Peaches! He grabbed hold of the rope that I was strung up to try and stop the catastrophic caravan and ended up freeing me in the process. Of course, I was ever so thankful, and even though he wasn’t too sure, I eventually won him over with my ardent, repeated pleas for help, just like my momma taught me!

Since then, I’d have to say my favorite story has been, without a doubt, the Crow. Nothing bad ever happens to him! He just dances around in a very safe manner and makes little rhymes that are of insult and harm to no one, including himself! Surely, you see the appeal? Another great thing about playing the Crow is that I get to play with the ever-so-beauteous Princess Gwen! Sure, she steals the tasty cheese I was planning on saving for myself, but she’s so nice and and strong that I’m happy to relinquish it on a daily basis at our performances.

If I’m being perfectly honest with you, my dream destination for a Samuel Peaches’ Peripatetic Players performance (woo, mouthful!) would be any sort of sterile room with padded walls and ceilings where nothing is hidden and there are no noxious fumes in the air! I can’t think of anything safer than that.

My fondest memory that isn’t related to an actual performance is certainly the time when Samuel Peaches finally made me a full-time performer. Up until then, I had just been chasing the caravan across desert, mountain, ocean- you name the biodome, I crossed it chasing that wagon! Finally, he stopped the wagon to do a show and I was able to meet everyone in the cast. After the show, I stowed away and pestered him with notes from my hiding place on the wagon that read, “Please please please let me be in the show please please please I’ll do anything pleeeeeaaaaaase,” until he finally sent me one back that said, “Yeah, okay, whatever.” That’s when ol’ Meekins was finally able to graduate to an actual spot inside the wagon itself.

This sure wins the cake for the best thing I’ve done in my life! Cheers!

Photo by Serena Morelli.

Meekins as The Mariner in How the Whale Got Its Throat, in last year’s production of O Best Beloved.

Greetings and salutations from Samuel Peaches!

Hi everyone! We are doubley delighted to present to you our Peripatetic Player’s mini-autobiographies! The first up in this “behind-the-scenes” special is Samuel Peaches himself!

In his own words…

Samuel Xavier Peaches from the Samuel Peaches Peripatetic Players was born in England to parents richer than the king and queen combined. Groomed to be a doctor of science and law, his family was terrified he would follow in the footsteps of Thumper, his older and impractically creative older sister, who was determined to make whirligigs instead of a decent living.   When Mr. Peaches discovered the female kind midway through university he suddenly realized he had been building a life he didn’t even want remotely!  Mr. Peaches, keeping it a secret from his family, dropped out and left for the adventure of the new world: America.

Upon reaching the new world and his fresh start, Samuel Peaches discovered his sister had stowed away on his flight from pretentious English academia journey.  He saw nothing but opportunity; Thumper, a technical and mechanical genius, could provide Samuel with anything and everything needed to further his adventures… They didn’t get very far…

Then, down on their luck, on a late night in a dimly lit, unknown establishment deep in New Orleans, Peaches and Thumper met the beautiful and talented Blueberry Starshine.  She gave them the Just So Stories by Kipling, Thumper in one single night of intense focus, built the flux wagon and the Samuel Peaches Peripatetic Players were born.

Sadly after many glorious years and too many adventures to count, Blueberry left the troupe to pursue her own interests… Unfortunately taking with her the Peripatetic Player’s rights to perform the Just So Stories.

Peaches favorite story to perform has always been The Camel’s Hump (as he got to work closely with Blueberry in fantastical characters) but will most likely shift to the Race of the Tortoise and the Hare for this new adventure in the lands of Aesop.  Peaches favorite players to work with are Thumper and Meekins due to the random and highly excitable energy of both performers.  Samuel Peaches is both terrified and anxious to perform back at Port Costa.  The memories of Blueberry are strongest there.

Mr. Peaches simply invites you, his beautiful audiences, to dream, to delight, and to dare!

Photo by Serena Morelli

Samuel, Thumper, and Blueberry Starshine begin to tell how the Rhino Got Its Skin, in last year’s production of O Best Beloved.

Announcing… Aesop Amuck!

During August 2015, the Samuel Peaches Peripatetic Players — that madcap troupe of travelling thespians who brought you O Best Beloved — will take the show on the road once more in Aesop Amuck.

2015 Bay Area Parks Tour:
Saturdays and Sundays, August 1 – 23

Aesop Amuck is the Peripatetic Players’s adaptation of Aesop’s fables. It’s fun for the whole family, decidedly fabulous, marvellously moralistic, and at least 300% educational!

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The Fox and The Lion – illustration by Harrison Weir from Three Hundred Aesop’s Fables, translated by G.F. Townshend, 1867

Grab the kids, throw on some sunscreen (or, if in SF, pack a parka), and head out to the nearest park or public space! The Peripatetic Players will arrive 30 to 60 minutes before showtime to set up FluxWagon, their folding mobile stage. Shows last just under an hour, and are full of songs, pratfalls and theatrical mayhem.