We had an unexpected visit at our store last summer. Mr. Ashraf Abdelbaky, the star of Egyptian theatre, came to Prague. Mr. Ashraf had a clear vision - to make a custom marionette.
We agreed on the basic conditions of our upcoming cooperation and we said good bye for a little while. Mr. Ashraf didn’t leave Prague with empty hands thought. He took a wonderful collection of Charlie Chaplin marionettes with him.
The custom marionette was supposed to stand 60cm tall and have a very realistic face of Mr. Ashraf himself. But how do we create a puppet that has to be as light as possible and very well movable. With the little help of modern technology, we found the solution in no time. The head will be printed in 3D, which will give us the exact shape and the material will be light enough.
After the first consultation we found out there won’t be only one marionette, but eighteen right away! All the members from Mr. Ashraf’s theatre. Once we had all the materials needed for the production, we started working instantly!
We created 3D model for each actor regarding different body proportions of each person. The faces must have gone through strict corrections and critics.
After we finished the very first puppet, we got on the plane to Egypt - Cairo. We wanted to see the whole theatre and meet all the actors. And mainly, we needed a consultation about the next steps in this important marionette manufacture.
Everything went quite smoothly after that. To create eighteen marionettes is demanding work. The organisation must be perfect. We had to ensure to have enough of materials, employes and mostly the time. Luckily, we managed it all well and in the next two months we got on the way to Egypt again. This time, we brought our amazing, experienced marionette actress Blanka Josephová Laňáková.
Blanka took everything in her hands and started teaching Egyptian marionette actors how to operate their puppets. Blanka is a real master (check out our online class under her leadership) and everybody learned the basics very fast.
We visited Egypt several times and we always saw a great progress of our Egyptian friends. With a little bit of director support and marionette playing teaching, our colleagues from theatre learned everything quickly and they were simply excellent.
There will be premiere in Cairo in November 20th and we’ll looking forward to see all the new photos and videos.
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