A journal of our adventures in Johannesburg (nicknamed Joburg) Africa from January of 2014 through July of 2015 while preparing for and serving as senior Church Education System (CES) missionaries for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.
A couple of years ago, my son Mike sent me the link to a TED talk about a puppet company that created beautiful life size horse puppets for a production called War Horse. Many of you may have read the book or seen the movie, if not, it's definitely worth seeing. A few months ago, we began to see billboards advertising the stage production that would take place here at a large theater in Montecasino which is a Vegas like casino complex near Joburg. As soon as they were available, I got tickets for us and a few friends, and we attended the performance the other night. Our seats were very near the front so we could see and hear the puppets, the puppeteers and the actors very clearly. It was absolutely magical to watch how they controlled full size puppets of birds and geese and horses to make you forget they were puppets at all. You even forget that the puppeteers that were always present controlling them. In one part of the production, there is a blast and the horse is blown back by the force of it, with men in his path. I was thinking, that horse has got to be really heavy! In reality, the horse was made of cane and fabric and probably a fraction of the weight of a live horse, but that truth is suspended as you see the puppets as important characters in the plot. Pictures weren't allowed during the production so I've relied on Google images which can't quite capture the spirit, but you'll get the idea. The TED talk is also posted that talks about the first time they were produced. I know there have been many created since then and the company has also produced puppets for other productions.