As the Traverse Theatre gears up for its 50th anniversary year in 2013, Puppet Animation Scotland and the Traverse announce the 2013 Manipulate Visual Theatre Festival. This ambitious season of performance and film from around the world sees the festival grow from one to two weeks at the Traverse and extend its reach with dates at Lochgelly Centre, Fife, Lemon Tree, Aberdeen and Norwich Puppet Theatre.

The sixth annual festival of international theatre, puppetry, animation and film this year showcases epic storytelling and explores the future of puppetry and animation in the digital age. The performance programme features work from England, Estonia, Finland, Israel, the Netherlands, Russia, Scotland and the USA, plus a film programme with an equally global scope.

Speaking about the festival, Simon Hart, Artistic Director of Puppet Animation Scotland said:- “Manipulate has grown year on year, in audience, programme and reputation. We’re celebrating our sixth year and the Traverse’s 50th anniversary with our most ambitious programme yet, presenting international productions in Edinburgh, Fife, Aberdeen and England. Our larger animation programme features great new films from the Czech Republic and the USA and a classic from the Brothers Quay. We’re also showcasing the brilliant work of four up and coming, prize-winning animators from Scotland. We’re delighted as ever, to offer audiences across Scotland and for the second year, in Norwich, the opportunity to experience the best of contemporary exciting visual theatre and animation.”

Following Manipulate’s opening cabaret at Edinburgh’s Summerhall with Netherlands based Carles Casallachs’ Sal Y Samba (3 Feb), the performance programme begins at the Traverse with Finland’s TIP Connection. To The End of Love, inspired by the legend of Bluebeard’s castle, is a wordless and visually powerful work by a group of dynamic young theatre artists from Finland, France, Lithuania and Russia (4 Feb).

Estonia’s Nuku Theatre presents A Wild Growling Happiness, manipulate festival’s first work programmed for young people, a story about creating and exploring our own worlds by performers from the Estonian State Puppet & Youth Theatre (5 Feb).

The Paper Cinema, England, return to Edinburgh with their 2011 Fringe hit, The Odyssey. Homer’s classic story is brought to life using cinematic projection and animation to transform a suitcase full of cut-out paper puppets into a rich array of living characters and striking landscapes (6 Feb). Physical Theatre Scotland presents After the Wave, a full length show that has developed over the past four years from manipulate’s Snapshots programme. Inspired by images of victims of severe natural disasters, life size puppets, masks and live music explore how world events are reflected in the human body (7 Feb).

Paper-engineering features again in the programme with work from Israel’s Yael Rasooly in Papercut. This one woman show about the frustrated secretary of a big Hollywood producer transforms the vivid language and style of black and white cinema into a low–tech universe of paper cut-outs and object theatre (7 Feb).

Los Angeles-based performance group Cloud Eye Control appear in the UK for the first time at manipulate with three short works, Final Space, Ocean Flight and Myth and Infrastructure. The company combine interactive media with live performance to examine human adaptation in a technological world (8 Feb).

The Netherland’s Stuffed Puppet Theatre brings Neville Tranter’s combination of wicked, down to earth humour, deadly seriousness and virtuoso puppetry to manipulate with Schiklegruber…Alias Adolf Hitler. Neville Tranter has built a reputation over the past 30 years as a world leader in puppetry, consistently engaging with social and political issues in his work (9 Feb). Summerhall is the setting for Snapshots: Creation & Play Platform Performance, where Scottish artists Drop Kick and Tortoise in a Nutshell present works in progress, and performance critic Gareth Vile hosts a participatory seminar exploring the boundaries of art through conversations (9 Feb).

The performance programme closes with the return of Slick by Vox Motus, which had its world premiere at the Traverse during the 2008 Edinburgh Festival Fringe. The story of boy permanently attached to his skateboard combines absurd comedy, visual storytelling, puppetry, object theatre and physical performance to create a unique ensemble performance. Kicking off a national tour at manipulate (12-16 Feb).

The film strand of manipulate, curated by Susie Wilson, begins with a feature from The Brothers Quay, The Piano Tuners of Earthquakes (Germany/UK 2005) a piece strongly influenced by Eastern European animation (4 Feb). Alois Nebel (Czech Republic/Germany), Tomas Lunak’s award-winning feature film debut is based on the popular graphic novels trilogy by the Czech artists Jaroslav Rudis and Jaromir 99 (5 Feb). Nearly 15 years in the making and shot frame by frame, Consuming Spirits (USA, 2012) is meticulously constructed experimental animation by Chris Sullivan. Big Man Japan, a deadpan mockumentary satire of reality TV and monster movies by Japanese comedian Hitoshi Matsumoto, concluding manipulate’s feature programme (9 Feb).

The shorts programme presents nine films in 80 minutes, with animation from Hungary, Russia, Estonia, France, USA, Canada, Austria and Luxembourg (6 Feb). Snapshots: Creation and Play – 6.05 showcases four works over four nights from recent graduates from the Edinburgh College of Art’s Animation Department, introduced by leading Scottish animator Iain Gardner (5 – 9 Feb).

The Festival runs from Monday 4 – Saturday 16 February, 2013

Listings – Edinburgh Performances:

Sunday 3 February (6.00pm) Summerhall FESTIVAL CABARET Buzzcut presents Carles Casallachs (Netherlands) Por Sal y Samba

Tickets: £11 / £6 from Summehall Box Office (0845 874 3001 / www.summerhall.co.uk) ——————————————-

Monday 4 February (7.30pm) Traverse Theatre PERFORMANCE TIP Connection (Finland), Traverse Theatre To The End of Love

Tickets: £15.50 / £11.50 / £6

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Monday 4 February (9.15pm), Traverse Theatre SCREENING: FEATURE FILM The Piano Tuner of Earthquakes DIR: The Brothers Quay (Germany / UK, 2005) Tickets: £6 / £20 Film pass ——————————————-

Tuesday 5 February (6.05pm), Traverse Theatre SCREENING: Edinburgh College of Art Animation Showcase Snapshots: Creation and Play – 6.05 All that Glisters by Claire Lamond

Free, but ticketed.

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Tuesday 5 February (7.30pm), Traverse Theatre PERFORMANCE Nuku Theatre (Estonia) A Wild Growling Happiness

Tickets: £15.50 / £11.50 / £6 (A Big Night Out Event)

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Tuesday 5 February (9.15pm), Traverse Theatre SCREENING: FEATURE FILM Alois Nebel DIR: Tomas Lunak (Czech Republic / Germany, 2011)

Tickets: £6 / £20 Film pass

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Wednesday 6 February (6.05pm), Traverse Theatre SCREENING: Edinburgh College of Art Animation Showcase Snapshots: Creation and Play

Tea Party by Vitalij Sichinava

Free, but ticketed

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Wednesday 6 February (7.30pm), Traverse Theatre PERFORMANCE

The Paper Cinema (England)

The Odyssey

Tickets: £15.50 / £11.50 / £6

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Wednesday 6 February (9.15pm), Traverse Theatre SCREENING: SHORTS PROGRAMME Log Jam: KFJG No. 5 DIR: Alexi Alexeev (Hungary / Russia 2008, 2’) Crocodile DIR: Kaspar Jancis / Estonia 2009, 17’) Wind Along the Coast DIR: Ivan Maximov (Russia, 2003, 7’) Aalterate DIR: Christobal De Olivera (France, 2012, 10’) Welcome to Kentucky DIR: Craig Welch (USA, 2004, 12’) Nightingales DIR: Theodore Ushev (Canada 2011, 3’) Madame Tutli Putli DIR: Chris Lavis, Maciek Szcerbowksi (Canada 2007, 17’) Log Jam: Snake DIR: Alexei Alexeev (Hungary, Russia, 2008, 1’) Fast Film DIR: Virgil Widrich (Austria / Luxembourg, 2003, 14’) Log Jam: The Moon DIR: Alexi Alexeev (Hungary / Russia 2008, 2’)

Tickets: £6 / £20 Film pass

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Thursday 7 February (7.30pm), Traverse Theatre PERFORMANCE Physical Theatre Scotland After the Wave Tickets: £15.50 / £11.50 / £6

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Thursday 7 February (9.15pm), Traverse Theatre PERFORMANCE Yael Rasooly (Israel)

Paper Cut

Tickets: £15.50 / £11.50 / £6

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Friday 8 February (6.05pm), Traverse Theatre SCREENING: Edinburgh College of Art Animation Showcase Snapshots: Creation and Play – 6.05

I am Tom Moody By Ainslie Henderson Free, ticketed

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Friday 8 February (7.30pm), Traverse Theatre PERFORMANCE Cloud Eye Control (USA) Final Space, Ocean Flight, Myth and Infrastructure: 3 Short Works

Tickets: £15.50 / £11.50 / £6

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Friday 8th February (10.00pm), Traverse Theatre SCREENING: FEATURE FILM Consuming Spirits DIR: Chris Sullivan (USA, 2012)

Tickets: £6 / £20 Film pass

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Saturday 9th February (2.00pm), Summerhall SEMINAR Participatory seminar with Gareth Vile

Free, ticketed from Summerhall Box Office (0845 874 3001 / www.summerhall.co.uk)

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Saturday 9th February (4.00pm), Summerhall PLATFORM PERFORMANCE Dropkick (Scotland) Torn Tortoise in a Nutshell (Scotland) Feral

Free, ticketed from Summerhall Box Office (0845 874 3001 / www.summerhall.co.uk) ——————————————-

Saturday 9th February (6.05pm), Traverse Theatre SCREENING: Edinburgh College of Art Animation Showcase Snapshots: Creation and Play – 6.05

The Making of Longbird Will Anderson

Free, ticketed

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Saturday 9th February (7.30pm), Traverse Theatre PERFORMANCE

Stuffed Puppet Theatre (Netherlands)

SCHIKLEGRUBER…Alias Adolf Hitler

Tickets: £15.50 / £11.50 / £6

——————————————- Saturday 9th February (10.00pm), Traverse Theatre SCREENING: FEATURE FILM

Big Man Japan DIR: Hitoshi Matsumoto (Japan)

Tickets: £6 / £20 Film pass

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Tuesday 12th February – Saturday 16th February Traverse Theatre PERFORMANCE Vox Motus (Scotland)

Slick

Tickets: £15.50 / £11.50 / £6

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