The Winds Tell the Tales

No, not the trade-winds. The winds I’m referring to here are those winds that carry the fairy tales to the ears of today’s youth and the ears of those who choose to still believe. Recently we were treated to a production of “Wind of a Thousand Tales, Folk Tales from Faraway Places” by John Glore with Music and Lyrics by Diane King

Mid-Pac Sign

The Mid-Pacific Institute School of the Arts pulled together this production and, under the direction of CoCo Wiel, pulled the Winds together to tell three tales in an attempt to show protagonist, Kimberly-Kay, the value of fairy tales.

Kimberly-Kay had already decided that bed-time stories and the like are a waste of time. The “Winds” were on a mission to change her mind!

Banner for Performance

Just that abstract notion alone — that the winds are going to guide Kimberly-Kay into the world of the literary fiction — was enough to pull at my heart strings. I couldn’t wait to see if they would be successful.

The play was performed in a small theater inside the charming little building seen below. The building has obviously been around for a long time but it was equally obvious that there has been some recent repairs done to the building while maintaining it’s historic appearance.
Kawaiaha'o Recital Hall

Meet the Winds

Brisa, Wind Telling the Mexican TaleThis tree, seen here on the right, is Brisa, the first animated “wind” to share a bit a folklore with the audience.

Played by Julie Comstock, this wind leads everyone through an unusual Mexican love story that actually manages to peak Kimberly-Kay’s interest.

There’s nothing like the anticipation of hearing what ‘s going to happen! After following the storyline for a bit, Kimberly-Kay can’t wait to find out what happens next. That was one bedtime story that was not going to put anyone to bed any time soon!

Carlos the Mexican character puppetThe most humorous part of this first tale would have to be the narcissistic Carlos, seen here on the left. He is more concerned with his hair and his collection of combs than he is with the young girl who is very much in love with him.

It is not until Carlos loses his sight that he is able to “see” that the same little friend from his youth has loved him all along.

The puppetry and the character of Carlos were created and played by Matthew Conners.

After the story is told, Kimberly-Kay wants to know, “Is it true?”

Her question is answered with another question: “Is it?”

I was waiting to hear the answer to Kimberly-Kay’s question but what I heard raised my eyebrows and made me start thinking. “Is it?” I think it was.

My own affectionate view of the world of fantasy fiction in general, and the fairy tales we grew up with, in particular, was certainly not jeopardized by this collection of tales. I have always seen fairy tales as one of the great teaching tools of early childhood and, while not really aimed at “early” childhood, these yarns being spun had stories to tell, lessons to teach, and left you with things to think about.

Nushi, Wind Telling the Japanese TaleNushi, played by Todd Aquino-Michaels and seen here on the right, is what I assume to be something of a Samurai wind. Nushi tells a Japanese tale of a girl who secretly dances for a spirit and whose secret is eventually discovered. She is later reunited with the young man to whom she was forced to disclose her secret.

Now, with this one, we were leaning more on the fantasy side of things — my kind of story! The magic of romance and the realities of what a woman is willing to dedicate her life to always makes for a good tale! Ah, the insufferable romantic that I am! Sigh. 🙂

In case you hadn’t noticed, the costumes for each of the stories in this play were a combination of clothing, make-up and puppetry.

Bluster, Wind Telling the European Tale

Bluster, played by Zak Lathrop, was probably my favorite from a theatrical point of view. Quite the blustering, gasconading goofball, this peculiar breeze shared a European tale about a cranky princess who needed a suitor who could make her laugh, or lose his head trying.

This windy character, as you can see here on the right, was very appropriately styled — with the look of a court jester. Kudos to CoCo Wiel, the show’s director, for her creative puppetry!

In addition, there were some very appropriate sounds effects that were used to get a few points across. Bluster had a spring, or a “boing” in his step and the sounds of heads hitting the floor spared us the need for any visual confirmation — thank goodness!

The useful application of these sound effects for this segment was a nice addition and quite an effective touch.

Kimberly-Kay

At least twice I picked up on what I thought was a suggestion to Kimberly-Kay, played by Kellianne Cadavona and seen here on the left, to determine in her own mind if the stories were true.

Aren’t they all true for us at any given time in our lives? Certainly some of the emotions evoked by these stories are things we can all relate to — discovering the people who really do care for us, finding out that there really are people who can bring us happiness, and seeing the useful lessons and charm in the artful gift of storytelling.

The cast seemed to enjoy sharing these tales and as you can see below, they were very happy to do so!

The Cast of Wind of a Thousand Tales

No, these “Winds” were not our beloved trades but I must say that these Winds did carry some wonderful messages as they blew across the stage. The Wind of a Thousand Tales also carried the message that upcoming productions put on by the Mid-Pacific Institute School of the Arts may very well be worth seeing. I’m counting on it!

 |  digg this! digg | stumble this! stumble | submit to reddit! reddit | del.icio.us tag this 
Related Stories:

2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Teresa Lathrop // Jul 1, 2008 at 8:07 am

    What a wonderful write up on the Winds of a Thousand Tales. I’m sending your website to all my family on the Mainland!
    Thanks
    Teresa Lathrop
    Zak’s mom (Bluster)

  • 2 Evelyn // Jul 1, 2008 at 4:25 pm

    Awww! Hi Bluster’s, I mean Zak’s, Mom! Thank you for checking in and thank you for your comment! I thought the puppets and the “stars” were a lot of fun. They seemed to be enjoying what they were doing and they were all full of a lot of their own character, in addition to the ones they were playing. 🙂 Zak did a good job, Mom!

Leave a Comment