photo from http://pickledimage.co.uk/yana/
Last Saturday, we went to a local theatre to see 'Yana and the Yeti' by Pickled Image. It was advertised for 5+ years and there were quite a few children there. It was a multi-layered story, focusing on friendship and acceptance. While the children identified with the friends and bullying, there were other issues such as displacement which were more aimed towards adults.
The puppets were very engaging - Yana herself had blinking eyes and a movable mouth. The puppeteers manipulated the puppets with mastery, care and precision and there was not one moment when the puppets weren't 'alive'. When Yana went to sleep next to the Yeti (in the photo above), you could see them both breathing.
The backdrop was of a mountain filmed over twenty four hours and added to the whole magical ambiance of the piece. The writers had created their own language for the performance, which had what sounded to be Scandinavian influences, but it was easy to follow. The audience was invited to come and meet the puppets and their puppeteers after the performance and that was fascinating.
There is a short promotional film here about the performance which gives just a small flavour of the atmosphere and production. It was a wonderful way to escape into a different world.