The hares

From the production From Mikko Matti og vennene hans* (Mikko Matti and his friends), Folketeatret

The hares were the friends of Mikko Matti in the production Mikko Matti og vennene hans* (Mikko Matti and his friends), with its world premiere at Folketeatret March 31 1954. The puppet play was written by Willie Nordrå, who was also responsible for the stage design and the puppet design. Julian Strøm directed it.

Mikko Matti og vennene hans was revived in 1966, opening September 14, and the production was also performed in 1967. Willie Nordrå's adaptation, stage design and puppets were also used in this production. It was directed by Guri Ludt.

The information in this entry is based on the 1966 production.  

*Not yet translated into the English. The title within parentheses is the Norwegian title's literal meaning.

Information

(Objekt ID 99049)
Object type Puppet
Production date September 14, 1966
Category Glove puppet
Size Approximately 50 centimetres tall
License

Oslo Nye Teater (Oslo New Theatre).

Copyright.

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In 1953, Julian Strøm became the leader of the puppetry theatre at Folketeatret, which was sorted under the children's theatre at the same theatre. The first puppetry production was Nils og Blåmann* (Nils and Blåmann), for which Willie Nordrå made the puppets, and the second production was Mikko Matti og vennene hans* (Mikko Matti and his friends). The stage design and the puppets for this production were also made by Willie Nordrå.

Anne M. Helgesen writes the following about the puppets for Nils og Blåmann: "Photos show that Nordrå's puppets had similarities with Jane Mykle's style, materials and puppet making techniques" (2003: 340). This is no wonder, considering how Jane Mykle had made puppets for the first productions at Folketeatret (Gjete kongens harer* (Herding the king's hares) and Væren og grisen som skulle til skogs (The ram and the pig who were headed to the forest), both opening in 1953). Agnar Mykle directed both of these productions. He left Folketeatret in 1953. 

Jane and Agnar Mykle had been attending a course in puppetry with Marcel Temporal in Paris in 1947. He was a renewer of French Guignol theatre, French, popular theatre with glove puppets. 

Sceneweb refers to the other puppets registered from the production. These are Mikko Matti, the fox and the wolf. 

SOURCE:

Helgesen, Anne M.: Animasjonen - Figurteatrets velsignelse og forbannelse. Norsk Figurteaterhistorie (literally: Animation - The blessing and curse of puppetry. Norwegian Puppetry History). Dr. Art. thesis in theatre theory, 2003, UiO. 

Donated by: Oslo Nye Teater (Oslo New Theatre).

Transported 02.04.2020. 

*Not yet translated into the English. The title within parentheses is the Norwegian title's literal meaning.

Types of materiale

There were many hares in Mikko Matti og vennene hans* (Mikko Matti and his friends), and they were more or less made from the same template; glove puppets. This was prior to Styrofoam, and it is likely that these heads were cast from a clay mould, as was usual at the time. According to the photo of Mikko Matti and two hares, both hares have ears standing up. These must be stiffened, possibly by thin wire. The heads were covered by a fluffy fabric, and the wide oversleeves/costumes were made from the same material. It may seem as if the paws of the hares were stiffened or padded.

The description is based on photos.   

*Not yet translated into the English. The title within parentheses is the Norwegian title's literal meaning.

Construction/technique

There are different varieties of glove puppets, depending on the hand position used by the puppeteer. The most common is to place the index finger in the puppet's head, but there are also puppets where the puppeteer uses two fingers for this, the index finger and the middle finger. This provides a certain opportunity to move the head, and can also be useful if the head is heavy. In this case, it has been suggested that the fingers were positioned as follows: The index finger moving the head, and the other fingers were placed into the right and the left paw of the puppet. Most likely, the hares wore an undersleeve beneath the costumes (oversleeves).

The description is based on photos.

Affiliations
Willie Nordrå (person) – Stage designer, Puppet Maker
Anders Kjær (person) – Stage designer
Folketeatret (organization) – Creator
Mikko Matti og vennene hans* (Mikko Matti and his friends) (production) – Glove puppet
Mikko Matti og vennene hans* (Mikko Matti and his friends) (production) – Glove puppet