When we heard that Arts Margaret River were bringing a live performance, in fact ‘the only’ live performance this year, to the HEART with a special schools performance, we knew it was an opportunity not to be missed. Room 6 had just had their Day at the Museum where their room was transformed into a Natural History Museum where they’d explored skulls, teeth, plant parts and feathers. They were also investigating Megafauna of Australia as part of their Australian Animals Inquiry – so this was a chance to delve deeper and further back in time, to a world where Australian dinosaurs roamed our land.
The Year 2 teachers felt it was a great opportunity for students to immerse themselves in live theatre, with Erth Troupe’s international reputation for quality performance and (what every younger child dreams of…..) puppets! So, we booked tickets and in due course set off to the HEART to enter a prehistoric world!
It really was ‘out of this world’. Cleverly, the stage lighting highlighted the actors and dinosaurs, but hid any evidence of them being puppets. Using a Japanese puppet technique, these were very large creatures, manipulated not by puppet strings but by actors walking beside them or from inside the dinosaur. The special effects were spectacular and it was an immersive and interactive experience, with ‘creatures’ swooping over the audience (even up to the back of the theatre) and it included the use of drones. The performance took us on a journey from the growth of bacteria to Snowball Earth, then the progressive development of these wonderful creatures, offering detailed factual and scientific details to accompany the visual spectacle before us.
On returning to school, students reflected on their experience. This is what students had to say.
ROOM 6 students said:
What I liked best was the drones that turned into giant squid with LED lights. My favourite part was when the brontosaurus showed up and ate some leaves. I never knew angler fish were around with the dinosaurs.
It was interesting because the dinosaurs were very large and realistic.
Today I learnt that there are so many diffferent types of dinosaurs in Australia. My favourite dinosaur was Lightning Claw, who was in Oscar’s territory.
Today I learnt that Bioluminescence was a thing. The giant squid were bioluminous.
I think it was a good show and it was impressive that you could fit so many puppets on stage and how the angler fish had its own fishing lure.
Today I learnt about so many different dinosaurs by name. My favourite part was when Lightning Claw was roaring and we had to “Moo for Minny”.
Bella W. said:
It was interesting how they made the puppets very cool and big. They were very creative about making the puppets. I also liked that the people were in the puppets, acting like the dinosaurs. The best part was when the dinosaur showed its bottom at us when the lady said “hug” to the dinosaur. It was kind of funny when the dinosaur showed us its butt!”
ROOM 14 students said:
On Wednesday I went to the HEART to watch a dinosaur play with Room 14 and the rest of the year twos and a year three class. We walked to the Dinosaur play. The actor girl took us underwater and we saw an angler fish. It had a light hanging off its head. I had lots fun because I liked the underwater bit.
On Wednesday, Room 14 and the other year twos went to the dinosaur play at the HEART. To get to the HEART, we walked. There were five people doing the play. Some of them were in a costume. The main person took us under the sea and we saw a dinosaur called an angler fish. Some people watched when the dinosaurs came and they chose Wesly to help (on stage). Wesly sat on the box. The dinosaur put its mouth open and its mouth went on Wesley’s head. I enjoyed the show a lot.
Olive K. said:
My favourite part was the carnivore and my favourite fish was the angler fish.
Wesley went on stage and nearly got his head chopped off. My favourite was the carnivore. I enjoyed the play.
At the beginning we saw some viruses… I love the play because the dinosaurs looked life-like.
As educators, we certainly value being able to attend performances and movie viewings at our local HEART, Margaret River. Thank you for bringing live performances, movies and musical performances to our town. 🙂