ADELAIDE FRINGE FESTIVAL REVIEW: Dreamer In The Deep

Adelaide Fringe Festival's Dreamer In The Deep comes courtesy of the Dream Puppets who won a five star rating for their work in the 2007 Adelaide Fringe.
ADELAIDE FRINGE FESTIVAL REVIEW: Dreamer In The Deep
Adelaide Fringe Festival: Dreamer In The Deep Come on in everyone, it doesn’t matter if you’re four or 104, this show is a hit. I was fortunate to arrive early and sat three rows back from the centre of the stage; others weren’t far away though, with a small intimate audience waiting in anticipation. Those who love all things aquatic will not be disappointed… First up let me introduce Julia Davis, disguised in black, a one woman band, ready to light up your night! After the Dream Puppets have performed twelve shows, it’s easy to see why they acquired their five star rating from the 2007 Adelaide Fringe. In stereo sound, came the rolling of the waves, with a beach side atmosphere, you could nearly smell the ocean. The stage was 3.5 metres long by 2 metres deep. The backdrop consists of three large, long canvas type blinds. Starting on the left there was a big beach house, smaller houses and a lighthouse up on a hilltop. If you can picture this, there was a sidewalk that led to the ocean in front, with a man-made 3D jetty as a prop. With the seaside music, it was a great indication as to what followed. We met Dreamer, the main character, who was woken up by a beautiful bright orange sea horse in the middle of the night. What an effect this was, pitch black as night falls with this bright 200 watt graceful sea horse, swimming around in mid air. The journey begins, as Dreamer sets out to sea, in his special wooden boat, not expecting to be part of what I can only describe as an “underwater fish tank “ NOT IN THE DARK!. During the 45 minute performance, no words are spoken, though, very cleverly written, as the music and the puppets spell out the story. The tranquil music, is perfectly selected as the graceful animals are frolicking and swimming. Meet the stingray passing by, he’s white, illuminated against the black backdrop and the bright coral and sea plants. Anyone for crayfish? Lit up like a Christmas tree down, down, down he swims to the bottom of the ocean bed, to sing us a song, performed by the amazing, talented Julia Davis. The piranha’s scales appear to be a big tile mosaic, with different colored light globes lighting up the inside of his stomach. The underwater sea life and the 3D back drops, have captured our attention, along with the perfectly choreographed music, which the puppets were synchronized with. Only at one stage did I notice the puppeteers arm, as the fish swam closer and closer to the audience, under the spot light. That was a disappointment, otherwise “seeing is believing” - that was the only criticism I have. The stage props and the back drops changed during different scenes, and as the ocean flows, so did these. Forget the fireworks on Sydney Harbour on New Year’s Eve, this is one of the best light shows to see this year. Take your children, they’d love it’s innocence, and for us adults, we’d appreciate it’s brilliance. Adelaide Fringe Festival’s Dream Puppets can be found at The Garden of Unearthly Delights - Puppet Palace. Rundle Park, Corner of East Terrace & Rundle Street Adelaide Season runs until March 21.

Julie Stone

Sunday 15 March, 2009

About the author

Julie Stone is a first time arts reviewer, based in Adelaide. She's a keen photographer and hopes to sell her art work soon, as a hobby on the side, apart from the norm, an Office Worker by day. She keeps fit playing sport a few times a week and is looking forward to this Fringe Spectacular approaching us fast.