From Germany, an ‘out-of-the-box’ play

German artiste Eva Kaufmann is coming to town with Happy Birthday, a silent play for all age groups

Published: 13th July 2019 06:37 AM  |   Last Updated: 13th July 2019 06:37 AM   |  A+A-

Happy birthday! or What’s rattling in the box? is about kids and parents, their desires, dreams and disappointments

Express News Service

BENGALURU: Ahead of Aha! International Theatre festival for Children, German theatre artiste Eva Kaufmann will be in town for Ranga Shankara’s programme showcasing national and international productions to the young audience of Bengaluru.

Kaufmann will be performing a play, Happy birthday! or What’s rattling in the box?, on July 16 as part of the theatre festival. The play is supported by Goethe Institut, Bengaluru, an institute which German language courses, creative events and has a library. The play is about children and their parents, desires, dreams, disappointments and the many different surprises life give us. “Elementary themes of the first years of childhood are packed into a clownish guise, so that the old and young can have a laugh about themselves,” Kaufmann says.

The silent play is for age groups above four. “Everybody can find themselves in the play. Parents can identify with the clownish person who is like a mother or father to the baby,” Kaufmann said, adding, “Everybody should be familiar with the themes in the show because of a lot of slapstick. People from all ages can relate and have fun as well.” The play centres on Lisa’s birthday and a mountain of colourful packages. Burning with curiosity, Lisa unpacks them and finds a crazy chicken. In the next box, she finds a baby grinning at her. But it turns out to be a little pest. Lisa now doesn’t have a moment for herself any more. She tries everything to calm the small thing down, but the baby screams, parps, pees, poops and still wants to be entertained. But the more Lisa tries, the more that goes wrong.

Kaufmann, an Austrian living in Berlin, was exposed to puppet theatre during her childhood. She studied puppet theatre at the Acting Academy Ernst Busch in Berlin. Talking about her interest in puppets, she said, “While watching a puppet show, not just children, but also adults enjoy the act.” As this is Kaufmann’s first visit to India, she is extremely interested to explore Indian theatre.

AHA! International Theatre Festival for Children at Ranga Shankara features plays from South Korea, Australia, Poland, Italy, Israel, Sri Lanka, the Netherlands, Switzerland as well as local performances.
It will be open for the audience from July 14 to July 20.

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