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24th Milk International Children’s Festival of the Arts



May 22 to 29

by the Dairy Farmers of Canada


TORONTO, February 10, 2005 — The 24th edition of the Milk International Children’s Festival of the Arts, sponsored by the Dairy Farmers of Canada, presents exhilarating and inspiring performing arts experiences for young audiences. Harbourfront Centre, a 2004 Dora Mavor Moore Award-winner for an Outstanding Touring Production from the 2003

Arts festival showcases the world’s top performers for young people in an eight-day extravaganza celebration

festival, presents a theatrical feast showcasing explosive clowns, a mystical museum hidden in the trees, dynamic dance with roller-blading acrobatics and more! A fun-filled site with plenty of great activities, including the Dairy Farmers of Canada Art Alley, will round out the festival experience. The Milk International Children’s Festival of the Arts takes place from Sunday to Sunday, May 22 to 29. For tickets and information, the public can call Harbourfront Centre at 416-973-4000 or visit www.harbourfrontcentre.com/milk; teachers can call 416-973-4000, option 5.

Festival Line-up

New Zealand’s WAI (pronounced "why") presents 100% Wai, a rousing celebration of music. The music of WAI – meaning water in Maori, the indigenous language of New Zealand – is refreshing, flowing with emotion, rich with soulful melodies, beating with complex rhythms. The WAI sound features singing in traditional tone, vocal patterns and harmonies. Organic natural beats and rhythms (human breaths, insect and bird sounds), indigenous percussion and action sounds (body slaps, foot stamping and hand clapping) are all incorporated and complemented by contemporary funk, reggae, hip-hop and R&B grooves.

From Denmark, Gruppe 38's The Little Match Girl is pure magic, full of happiness and depth. The fairytale is a moving celebration of Hans Christian Andersen’s classic tale, presented as part of the writer’s bicentenary. The story is about a little girl who is afraid to go home because she hasn’t sold enough matches. Against all expectations, in the midst of misery, hardship and pain, a joyous message of faith, hope and love emerges. (North American premiere.)

Denmark’s Teatret Patrasket stages Snow White in Black & White, a black and white humourous tale of good and evil. Everyone knows the story of beautiful Snow White, but never has it been told so brilliantly like this: seven silly dwarves in tennis shoes played by two remarkable performers. (North American premiere.)

From Scotland, Ontario, the Daredevil Opera Company presents Cirkus Inferno, an unpredictable explosive circus spectacle! Troublemakers, Lucky and Lady, the world’s most lovable clowns, take over the stage in this hilarious slapstick adventure featuring huge pyrotechnic effects and stunning physical feats.

Germany’s Erfreuliches Theater Erfurt/FADENZIEHER performs The Queen of Colours. A little queen, a rod shadow puppet with a marvellous thread arm and wispy hair, lives alone in her black and white castle. Luckily the Court Painter and Musician arrive to liven things up. A play about the expression of colours, with live music and painting. Supported by Goethe Institut. (Canadian premiere.)

From The Netherlands, Danstheater AYA stages @ngst, a teeth-chattering dynamic dance performance. @ngst shows that fear is a part of life, it’s everywhere and has a thousand faces: the fear of standing out, the fear of not fitting in, and fear of one’s own body. Three striking young dancers, with video images in the backdrop, explore this notion for a remarkable performance one will not forget. (North American premiere.)

From The Netherlands, Lotte Van den Berg and Het Lab present Museum of Memories. Somewhere along the shore, among the trees, stands a barn with five chimneys and white shutters – the Museum of Memories. The museum contains hundreds of bottles, boxes, flasks and jars, stored in systematic order. Here memories are collected, kept and celebrated. Tour the mystical and marvellous museum for an intimate and personal experience to remember. (North American premiere.)

New International Theatre Encounter (NIE) brings together theatre artists from diverse backgrounds, traditions and training to create remarkably original performances. NIE performs Past Half Remembered, a sweeping retrospective tale about the love, loss, calamity and hope in a Soviet woman’s life that spans a century. NIE combines storytelling, music, physical theatre and mime to create theatre that is vibrant and alive. (North American premiere.)

From Switzerland, Theatre en Gros et en Détail’s *Portofino-Ballade delights children and adults alike with a tale of freedom and family dynamics. It’s all a question of time. Mr. Cuckoo pops out of the clock on the hour, every hour, year in, year out. That’s his job, his "art" if you will. But his son is bored to death with the prospect of taking over this chore from his father. He dreams of going out in the world to accomplish great things. A velvet-clad musician tells this poignant story using song, puppetry and gentle humour, housed within a miraculous double bass. Supported by Arts Council of Switzerland. Part of HE (see bottom of page 3 for details). (Toronto premiere.)

Montreal’s Carbone 14 mixes theatre, dance and gymnastics along with puppetry to present Tsuru, a magical tale that is based on Japanese mythology. Tsuru is a story of a young boy who experiences the triumphs and tragedies of life through his relationship with a baby crane, Tsuru. The creative and ingenious set is reminiscent of a children’s pop-up book. This set’s secret compartments open and close, revealing pop-up grass and flowers, all while beautiful shadow imagery is projected onto the back screen. (Toronto premiere.)

Toronto’s Theatre Direct stages Beneath the Banyan Tree, a vibrant fusion of traditional Indian and contemporary dance, puppetry and music. A dynamic story of Anjali, a young girl who has moved to Canada from India and her struggle to adapt to a new school. Feeling like an outsider, she retreats into an imaginary world where the colourful animal characters from Indian fables come to life. An eye-opening play that celebrates individual differences, regardless of culture. (Toronto premiere.)

From Toronto, The Second City returns by popular demand to present Milking the Laughs (The End of the Trilogy!), a showcase of sketch comedy and improv based on today’s pop songs, teachers, hockey parents and more!

There are marvellous outdoor performances by the Tartan Terrors and OSADIA, which are free with admission. From Burlington, Ontario, the Tartan Terrors perform a unique brand of Scottish comedy with traditional Celtic music and dance, mixed with a rock and roll beat. Visitors will be spellbound by the spectacular creations of Spain’s OSADIA, famous for its creative hair sculpting. OSADIA creates fantasy sky-high hairstyles using different materials ranging from fun fur to dolls, plastic fruit, sticks, straws and aluminum wire.

Other not-to-be-missed festival activities include the Dairy Farmers of Canada Art Alley; here participants can unleash their creative juices in a variety of hands-on activities and take-home crafts. A fun interactive zone awaits visitors at the LEGO Creative Play Area where they can use their imagination to build a robot, create a creature and more! Natrel Under the Big Top provides spectacular fun-circus style, including juggling and clowning. Under the Skirts of the Opera offers a unique opportunity to see opera costumes from a variety of Canadian Opera Company productions close up – from Victorian elegance to quick change miracles, from ferocious beasts to fairytale beauty.

Festival Weekend Ticket Packages

Sunday and Victoria Day Monday, May 22 & 23

& Saturday and Sunday, May 28 & 29

Milky Way Pass (activities + two shows) $15.50

Moola Lah Pass (activities + one show) $12.50

Festival Fun Pass (activities only) $9

ArtShops priced as show.

Tickets to school week performances

Tuesday to Friday, May 24 to 27

One show + activities $9

A second show or ArtShop on the same day is only $6 per person more.

The Milk International Children’s Festival of the Arts takes place in and around York Quay Centre, 235 Queens Quay West. The festival’s weekday (Tuesday to Friday, May 24 to 27) operating hours are 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., and its hours on the two weekends (Sunday and Victoria Day Monday, May 22 & 23; and Saturday and Sunday, May 28 & 29) are 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The Milk International Children’s Festival of the Arts is sponsored by the Dairy Farmers of Canada and generously supported by Natrel Inc., the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, Canadian Heritage, the Toronto Arts Council, the Ontario Arts Council, CIBC, LEGO, Good Humor Breyers and the Westin Harbour Castle.

HE – Who is HE?

Cultural programmes, like the Milk International Children’s Festival of the Arts, explore many ideas about our lives and our world as expressed by today’s artists. One of the ideas that runs through some of Harbourfront Centre’ s programmes is the changing nature of the male identity and shifting notions of man’s role in society. Harbourfront Centre invites patrons to join us in the exploration of HE. An *asterisk is used to identify these performances.


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