No matter what their ages, little and not so little ones will find something to delight in amongst the 16 offerings of this year’s Coups de Théâtre festival. In it’s 13th edition, creative teams from Quebec, Acadia, Spain, Belgium, France and Mexico will perform their works in theater, puppetry, dance and music which are aimed specifically at young audiences and families. Performances will be given in French, their original language with subtitles or without words.
Here are my picks:
A Mano (Spain):
You’re invited into a tiny world where four hands and modeling clay tell a tale of friendship in an imaginative world. This looks really neat, and you don’t have to worry about a language barrier, the story is set to music with no words. Ages 6+
Dans Ma Maison de Papier, J’ai des Poèmes Sur le Feu (Quebec):
This looks beautiful and has an engaging storyline. A young girl mysteriously wakes as an old woman in her play house. Forced to face her mortality by a mysterious character, she sets out to return her little girl shoes to her younger self. Ages 7+
For adventure lovers:
Futur Intérieur (Quebec):
Like sci-fi and poetry? Following three quebecois astronauts into hyperspace with a mission to explore new life forms and repair communications equipment, we enter a world where computers are more expressive than humans. The protagonists encounter an extraterrestrial bacteria that causes the infected to think and speak poetically. Ages 12+
For burgeoning foodies:
Two clownish chefs cover everything from feast to famine and will win you over with their likable grotesqueness. Ages 11+
For the very young:
L’Histoire du Grillon Égaré Dans un Salon (Quebec):
A wordless story where a five year old boy finds himself bored and alone in a dusty old room – until the furniture comes to life and adventure begins. Ages 5+
For very young audiences (ages 3-7), this story gives us a humorous sneak peak into the daily life of a daddy chicken trying to balance life, family and work. This one caught my attention as something I want to bring my young niece.
Tackling some of life’s best and toughest stuff:
A mixed dance/theater production, this show explores the discoveries and awakenings of adolescence from the senses, to desire, to community and love. Ages 13+
Les Grands-Mères Mortes (Quebec):
With marionettes, vocal percussion and story-telling, the rituals around death are explored and the lives of our lost loved ones celebrated. As a firm believer in being honest and open with kids about life and death, this looks to me like a great way to start exploring it or to open the door to conversation. Ages 9+
Les Coups de Théâtre takes place November 16-23. Ticket prices are $14 for professionals, elders, students, 18 years or under, group of 10 people or more; $19 for adults, and $60 for a family package of 2 adults and 2 children. See schedule for details on venues HERE.