Power of imagination

By Ashleigh Fielding | posted on June 22, 2018

A HEARTWARMING tale of a tiny man with a love for writing will play at the Albany Entertainment Centre next week and director Luke Kerridge said audiences can expect a journey of the imagination, the heart and the full emotional spectrum.

Bambert’s Book of Lost Stories follows Bambert, a teeny man portrayed by a puppet, whose only companions are the characters he creates in his stories.

He decides to send his stories out into the world on little balloons, in the hope they will find a home.

He asks the finders of the balloons to return the stories with a stamp, to show where they have landed, but when no stories return, Bambert’s hope fades.

Kerridge said the great gift of the Barking Gecko Theatre show is seeing the world through Bambert’s eyes.

“People who are a little bit different sometimes have the benefit of seeing things other people can’t,” he said.

“In Bambert’s case, I think he has some great insights to offer us about the beauty of moving slowly, the value of inner reflection and the power of imagination over reality.

“Bambert’s stories take you across the globe… some of them are bright and fun, some of them dark and melancholy, but they are all full of hope.

“Audience members have often described the show as an emotional workout!”

Bambert’s Book of Lost Stories was adapted for the stage by Kerridge and Dan Giovannoni from the original story by Reinhardt Jung, and features puppetry combined with real life actors.

Kerridge said he initially found the puppetry element quite challenging.

“I remember our early rehearsals felt so technical; it was constant problem-solving as the team tried to develop the style and perfect the physical score,” he said.

“However, over time this also became the most enjoyable part.

“To watch Bambert come to life in the hands of Tim Watts (our lead puppeteer) was really thrilling.

“I still marvel at how effortless it all seems now, but that really wasn’t the case in the beginning.”

For artistic director Matt Edgerton, Bambert’s Book of Lost Stories was his first show with the theatre company.

“When Luke brought this story to me, I was incredibly excited by his vision for the show,” he said.

“I was the dramaturg on the show, which meant that I worked really closely with Luke and his co-writer Dan Giovannoni as they crafted the script.”

Edgerton said he was very proud of the result.

“It felt like it was a story whose central theme was the transformative power of imagination and art – the idea that even if you’re small, you can accomplish amazing things,” he said.

“These themes still feel absolutely right for Barking Gecko Theatre and what we’re all about.”

Tickets for the June 30 show at the AEC are still available and can be purchased through the box office or online via Ticketek.