Very Hungry Caterpillar – Program Notes

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Mermaid Theatre of Nova Scotia presents

The Very Hungry Caterpillar & Other Eric Carle Favourites
2016 U.S. & Canada Tour

Author: Eric Carle
Director/Production Designer: Jim Morrow
Composer: Steven Naylor
Narrator: Gordon Pinsent
Narrator [French Version]: Jean-François Casabonne
Narraror [Spanish Version]: Marco Ledezma
Stage Manager: Christine Oakey

Performers: Simon Rainville, Graeme Black Robinson

About The Very Hungry Caterpillar & Other Eric Carle Favourites:
Mermaid’s compilations of five Eric Carle stories have generated remarkable statistics and earned considerable praise from audiences on several continents. In 2014, the production celebrated its fifteenth year of continuous touring and welcomed its two millionth spectator. Featuring innovative black-light puppetry and evocative original music, the fifty-minute production includes three beloved stories: The Very Hungry Caterpillar, Little Cloud and The Mixed-Up Chameleon. To date over 3500 performances have been presented in fifteen countries. Presentations have been offered in Dutch, English, Spanish, Japanese, Korean, French and Mandarin.

About Mermaid Theatre of Nova Scotia
Founded in 1972, Mermaid Theatre’s unique adaptations of children’s literature have delighted more than five million young people in sixteen countries on four continents. Based in Windsor, a small rural town in Nova Scotia’s Avon Region, the company performs for more than 300,000 spectators annually, and currently ranks among North America’s most active touring organizations. Closer to home, Mermaid offers instruction at all levels through its Institute of Puppetry Arts, welcomes artists-in-residence through its Theatre Loft, provides a unique outreach program for adolescents through the Youtheatre, and offers a vibrant performing arts series at MIPAC (the Mermaid Imperial Performing Arts Centre).

Eric Carle, Author
Eric Carle, internationally acclaimed author and designer, has written and illustrated more than seventy books for young children. Born in Syracuse, NY, he spent his youth in Germany where he studied fine art in Stuttgart prior to returning to the US in 1952 to work as a graphic designer for The New York Times and later as art director of an international advertising agency. His delightful books, which combine stunning collage artwork with an imaginative approach to learning, have sold more than 110 million copies worldwide.  In 2002, The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art opened to the public in Amherst, MA.  For more information, visit eric-carle.com and carlemuseum.org.

Jim Morrow, Director/Production Designer
Jim creates puppets for stage, television and film. He’s directed numerous shows for the Theatre, including Very Eric Carle; Stella, Queen of the Snow; Guess How Much I Love You & I Love My Little Storybook; Swimmy, Frederick & Inch by Inch; Goodnight Moon & The Runaway Bunny as well as designed many others. A gifted performer, Jim has toured extensively in Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom and Japan. He serves as director of puppetry for Symphony Nova Scotia’s production of The Nutcracker, and frequently conducts master classes in puppetry in North America and abroad. Jim is Mermaid Theatre’s Artistic Director.

Steven Naylor, Composer
Steven has created the music for more than a dozen Mermaid shows, including Very Eric Carle; Stella, Queen of the Snow; Guess How Much I Love You & I Love My Little Storybook; Swimmy, Frederick & Inch by Inch; Goodnight Moon & The Runaway Bunny. His many other professional activities include original film and television scores; contemporary music and ‘musique actuelle’ performance; university teaching and curriculum development; and a long-term international involvement with electroacoustic concert music. Steven is Mermaid Theatre’s Artistic Consultant for Music and Sound Design.

Gordon Pinsent, Narrator
Born in Grand Falls, Newfoundland, Gordon is an actor, director, writer and singer of great versatility, and one of Canada’s most beloved artists. His work for more than three decades in theatre, film, radio and television has earned him international recognition, as well as honorary doctorates from three universities. In 1999 he was named a Companion of the Order of Canada, the country’s highest award of merit.

Jean-François Casabonne, Narrator [French Version]
Jean-François is a prominent member of Québec’s vibrant cultural community where he has made his mark as a performer on stage, radio, film and television, as well as earned acclaim as a writer and musician. He’s appeared in more than fifty productions at major theatres including Théâtre Denise Pelletier, Théâtre du Nouveau Monde, Théâtre Jean-Duceppe, Théâtre du Rideau Vert, Théâtre de l’Opsis, Théâtre de Quat’sous and Espace GO. On the big screen he played the main character in Charles Binamé’s la Beauté de Pandore and has worked under the direction of directors such as Anaïs Barbeau-Lavalette, François Delisle and Michel Brault. As a writer, he published Du cœur au pied (Éditions Fides), Jésus de Chicoutimi, une perséide de Damas (Éditions du Silence) and a play entitled La traversée, oratorio pour voix humaines (Dramaturges Éditeurs). As singer and songwriter Jean- François launched his first album, l’Inconnu Zig Zag in 2009 and has performed at Francofolies in Montréal in 2008 and 2010.

Marco Ledezma, Narrator [Spanish Version]
A graduate of the National Institute of Fine Arts in Mexico City (Theatrical Arts), Marco Ledezma has appeared as a performer in a number of productions staged at internationally renowned festivals such as the Cervantino and the Festival of Mexico City among others. He immigrated to Canada in 1992, where he works as an actor in film, theatre and television, and specializes in all facets of dubbing. He is currently the major Spanish-language dubbing director in his home city of Montreal. To keep fit mentally and physically, Marco continues to take courses related to his profession and regularly practices both summer and winter sports. Marco’s narration for Mermaid’s LA ORUGA MUY HAMBRIENTA has been enjoyed by audiences in both Mexico and the USA.



About the Company

Christine Oakey, Stage Manager
Christine is a graduate of the University of King’s College in Halifax and the National Theatre School of Canada. She has served as stage manager with Atlantic Canada’s major theatres, including Two Planks and a Passion, Theatre New Brunswick, 2b theatre and Eastern Front Theatre. Christine has worked for theatres across Canada in Edmonton, Blyth and Toronto as well as several seasons at the prestigious Shaw Festival. She also works as a venue manager for Sundance Film Festival, Hot Docs, the Toronto International Film Festival and the popular BuskerFest in Toronto. Christine first joined the company in 1997, and has now toured to every state in the continental U.S. as well as China, Singapore, Korea and Western Australia.

Simon Rainville, Performer
Simon hails from Ontario, where he was born in Toronto and raised in Ottawa. Since graduating Ryerson University in 2003 he has travelled to Armstrong, BC to work with The Caravan Farm Theatre; to Newmarket, ON working with Resurgence; and to Halifax, NS, to work with Shakespeare By The Sea. He discovered puppetry and Mermaid in 2013, where he completed training with the Mermaid Institute of Puppetry Arts in the spring and joined the company in the fall.

Graeme Black Robinson, Performer
Graeme was born and raised in Toronto, Ontario. Since graduating from George Brown College’s Theatre Arts program, he has studied physical theatre forms across Canada with many esteemed teachers. Graeme is the Artistic Director of Toronto’s Silent Protagonist theatre company. He starred in their inaugural mask and puppet show Or Be Eaten at the 2013 Toronto Fringe Festival. Most recently he wrote and directed Cryptids of the Canadian Shield for the Toronto Puppetry Collective’s Puppet Allsorts Festival. Graeme joined Mermaid in 2014, and has since toured with Mermaid across the U.S., Canada, and the People’s Republic of China.


 

Mermaid Theatre staff
Artistic Director: Jim Morrow
General Manager: Lisa Gleave
Public Affairs Consultant: Sara Lee Lewis
Administrator: Cathy White
Office & Tour Coordinator: Jason Tucker
Production Manager: Deborah MacLean
Production Associate: Struan Robertson
Artistic Consultant for Music and Sound Design: Steven Naylor
Technical Director: Michael Jamieson
Youtheatre Coordinator: Kaleigh Heide
Scenic Painter: Sarah Haydon Roy
Seamstress: Sarah Harvey Hart

Mermaid Theatre of Nova Scotia is represented by
KIDS’ ENTERTAINMENT
For booking information, please contact them at:
460 College Street, Suite 202
Toronto, Ontario, Canada M6G 1A1
Tel: 416 971 4836
Fax: 416 971 4841
email: info@kidsentertainment.net
website: www.kidsentertainment.net

For general information, please contact:
Mermaid Theatre of Nova Scotia
P.O. Box 2697
Windsor, Nova Scotia, Canada B0N 2T0
Tel: 902 798 5841
Fax: 902 798 3311
email: puppets@mermaidtheatre.ca
website: mermaidtheatre.ca

The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle. © 1969 and 1987 by Eric Carle. All Rights Reserved. Published by Philomel Books.
Little Cloud by Eric Carle. © 1996 by Eric Carle. All Rights Reserved. Published by Philomel Books.
The Mixed-Up Chameleon by Eric Carle. © 1975 by Eric Carle. All Rights Reserved. Published by HarperCollins Publishers Inc.

Mermaid Theatre of Nova Scotia gratefully acknowledges the support of the Canada Council for the Arts, and Arts Nova Scotia. Mermaid Theatre of Nova Scotia is a member of the Professional Theatre Association of Canadian Theatres and engages professional Artists who are members of Canadian Actors’ Equity Association under the terms of the Canadian Theatre Agreement.