Polyglot’s February enews – Polyglot Premieres Play Space in China

It’s been a busy start to 2017 for Polyglot with some fantastic events across Victoria in January. Things are about to get a lot busier as we land in China this week for the Shanghai Children’s Art Theatre presentation of Paper Planet – the very first of Polyglot’s Play Spaces to tour in China! Our Boats are docking at the Kids ArtyFarty Fest for a day of nautical adventures on Sunday 19 March, and the countdown to the premiere of Cerita Anak (Child’s Story) has officially started – only 34 days to go!


Meet the artist: Emily Tomlins

What is your background as an artist? 
I started purely as an actor. I always wanted to be one and I pursued it through uni and finally went to acting school. When I graduated I got to work with big state theatre companies in both classics and new works. But my greatest love is actually helping to create work – work that is important and says something or means something to its audience. When I moved to Melbourne 10 years ago I started my own theatre company, Elbow Room, so I could do this. When I started to work with Polyglot in 2009 I had no idea I would get to collaborate in the same way with this amazing company. I have now been involved in a number of Polyglot’s shows right from the development stage. It is such a joy collaborating with such brilliant theatrical minds on incredible and diverse works for children.

What is your role in this project?
In this project I will be a performer, but have also had the chance to work on a previous development. The way Sue and Ria work in the room – everyone involved are also collaborators – throwing in ideas, trying things out. The performers have a varied and busy job in this show. At any time we may be ship-hands, puppeteers, the ocean, facilitators, or the voice of danger.

What’s been the highlight in the project for you?
The last development we did at ArtPlay in 2016 was incredibly special. It is such an honour to be a part of this project- it’s very hard to pick one highlight. It was so lovely to work with the artists form Papermoon and with their artistic director Ria. It is always a delight to work with Sue Giles and all of the creative team on Cerita Anak. One of the things I love the most about this project is the different levels on which it works. For the children, it is a magical journey filled with moments of play and wonder, gorgeous sound, and shadow puppetry. For adults it is an incredibly moving story – one that could happen to any of us; one that is happening to hundreds of thousands of people right now around the world; one that we should all be aware of and help with, in the ways we can; one we can no longer ignore.

What are you most looking forward to during the season premiere in Melbourne?
The thing I love about Polyglot shows, even ones like Cerita Anak that has a certain journey mapped out, is that every show is different. Kids keep you on your toes even more than an adult audience. There will be moments where surprising things happen because the children will be responding openly and honestly. And the point is, in Polyglot shows they are encouraged and given the room to respond in this way. It makes for a much more enriched and exciting experience for everyone involved. So in short – I am looking forward to it all; the fun, the crazy, the inspiring and the moving moments.

First On The Ladder

We’re kicking off a new art-meets-sport project this year, working with Beyond Empathy, the Moree Boomerangs and Rumbalara Football and Netball Club in Shepparton.

This project will celebrate the culture and achievements of Aboriginal children and their communities through a range of creative experiences including zine-making, animation and music. Over the three years of the project, First On The Ladder will use art-making and sport to strengthen cultural pride and community connection.

We’re thrilled to introduce you to our new team for this project, Ian Pidd and Simone Ruggiero! “It’s both exciting and a genuine challenge to embark on this collaboration with these highly motivated and inspiring communities. Apart from the far from trivial business of winning multiple premierships on the sporting arena, both these clubs take a leadership role in education, health and cultural issues in their towns.  I’m really confident that we can work together to create some wonderful art, and play some small part in the incredible community building effort that Rumbalara and The Boomerangs are undertaking.” – Ian Pidd, Project Director.

Read more about the Project Director, Ian Pidd.

Read more about the Project Producer, Simone Ruggiero.