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Snow White and Rose Red by The Brothers Grimm

Snow White and Rose Red wedding scene. Handmade and homespun puppet theatre by CastleofCostaMesa.com

Please enjoy our little handmade and homespun Fairy Tale puppet theatre in 7 scenes. This puppet show was created on Nunu’s 7th birthday as her gift to her friends and loved ones.

The Impulse for Snow White and Rose Red Puppet Theatre

Summer 2011. 6 year old Nunu is on her second year of piano lessons. Recently, she has learned 5 pieces of music with her new (since July 2011) private piano teacher, our beloved Mr. Pavel (click here to see link to his website). We enjoyed the idea of giving a gift to all our loved ones on our birthdays. So, we decided to put up a puppet show on her November 2011 birthday (when she will turn 7), where she will provide the piano music in for our puppet show scenes. Similarly, last year we did another performance for her 6th birthday, just without the piano accompaniment. The puppet show was based on the endearing story Apple Cake by Nienke Van Hichtum.

Nunu is very excited to create this puppet show and piano concert for her friends. This enthusiasm carries though her daily piano practice. We hope to include her little pianist friend Anička and perhaps a little violinist friend into our musical ensemble. Much excitement and joyful anticipation! I will post it after the event, for sure!

Fall 2011. I handmade the dolls with natural materials (cotton, wool, silk, animal pelt…). The children, Nunu, Vivi, Anička and Ashley helped make some of the props. Nunu and our 6 year old Czech friend Anička were my puppet show assistants. Nunu was dressed as Snow White while Anička was dressed as Rose Red. Nunu and Anička had been practicing their piano pieces over the months.

November 4, 2011. Nunu’s 7th birthday Puppet Show

Nunu is 7 years old today! The birthday girl her  played Dmitri Shostakovich’s Merry Fairy Tale as the Opening Theme song.

As Nunu played the opening theme song, Anička and Ashley went about in the audience with these medieval banners, beckoning the guests to take a seat.

These banners were designed and handmade by our very artistic Anička, for our puppet theatre.

“There was once a poor widow who lived in a lonely cottage.  In front of the cottage was a garden wherein stood two rose-trees, one of which bore white and the other red roses. She had two children who were like the two rose-trees, and one was called Snow-white, the other Rose-red. “

Thank you Angela Hart for the three lovely handmade needle felted pumpkins to mark the fall season!

“They were as good and happy, as busy and cheerful as ever two children in the world were.”

“They often ran about the forest alone and gathered red berries, and no beasts did them any harm, but came close to them trustfully. The little hare would eat a cabbage-leaf out of their hands, the roe grazed by their side, the deer and stag leapt merrily by them.”

” …and the birds sat still upon the boughs, and sang whatever they knew…” (a rehearsal photo)

On the actual day: The children responded to the birds on a stick scene.

When my children were newborns, I was often mystified when they would smile or laugh out of the blue. These moments brought much joy albeit with a sense of mystery. What could a newborn be thinking and amused by? I often wondered. Now that the children are older, I wonder a little less but the profound joy in seeing them think and laugh, remains.

“No mishap overtook them; if they had stayed too late in the forest, and night came on, they laid themselves down near one another upon the moss, and slept until morning came, and their mother knew this and did not worry on their account…”

“Once when they had spent the night in the wood and the dawn had roused them…” For this scene, Anička slowly moves the stars and moons across the puppet table/land. Here is a rehearsal photo. Anička had left for her Nutcracker ballet rehearsal, so Nunu posed for this scene.

“…Once when Snow White and Rose Red had spent the night in the wood and the dawn had roused them, they saw a beautiful child in a shining white dress sitting near their bed. She got up and looked quite kindly at them, but said nothing and went into the forest.”

“She got up and looked quite kindly at them, but said nothing and went into the forest. And when they looked round they found that they had been sleeping quite close to a precipice and would certainly have fallen into it in the darkness if they had gone only a few paces further. And their mother told them that it must have been the angel who watches over good children. “
Our wonderful audience was rapt, not a single peep was heard from the crowd!
Anička played a traditional Ukranian Melody on the piano as we introduce the cottage scene. Michaela narrates, “Snow-white and Rose-red kept their mother’s little cottage so neat that it was a pleasure to look inside it.”
“In the winter Snow-white lit the fire and hung the kettle on the hob. The kettle was of brass and shone like gold, so brightly was it polished.”
 This view of the kettle reminds me of one of Fernando Botero’s kitchen vignettes.

Anička made the most charming miniature fairy tale book for this scene.

Let’s find out what the widow and her two daughters were reading that winter…

The little writer of our family decided to paginate and organize the huge tome. He forgot to first ask permission of the book binder to do so!

Now they read the story of the Frog Prince (Oh! I love this story!)

…reading “The Frog Prince” (I love those European vintage illustrations!)

they read many many words…

One evening in winter, as the snowflakes were falling outside their cottage, someone knocked the door as if he wished to be let in. Mother said: “Quick, Rose-red, open the door, it must be a traveller who is seeking shelter.” Rose-red went and opened the door, thinking that it was a poor man, but it was not; it was a bear that stretched his broad, black head within the door.
“One evening in winter, as the snowflakes were falling outside their cottage…” (We had “snow on a stick”!)
111104 Wand of beads as snow falling Snow on a stick for homemade Snow White and Rose Red winter scene 2
“Poor bear,” said the mother, “lie down by the fire, only take care that you do not burn your coat.” Then she cried: “Snow-white, Rose-red, come out, the bear will do you no harm, he means well.” The bear said: “Here, children, knock the snow out of my coat a little”; So they swept the bear’s hide clean; Rose Red and Snow White sweep the bear gently and he stretched himself by the fire and growled contentedly .
111104 Snow White and Rose Red beating the snow off the bear's hide with a hazel switch 2
“When it was bed-time, and the others went to bed, the mother said to the bear: ’You can lie there by the hearth, and then you will be safe from the cold and the bad weather.’ “
111104 Snow White and Rose Red sisters reading and tuck in grizzly bear with doily in warm hearth 2
For the next scene, Anichka played a lively Skakalka/”Skipping Rope” by Armenian composer Khachaturian.

My biggest rewards in doing a puppet show are the children’s rapt expressions and their laugther. Look at the children’s reactions to the scene where Snow White and her sister Rose Red dolled up the big black bear. This image below provided me so much joy and satisfaction, making it all worth it (and more) to put up a puppet show.

Thank you lovely Amalia, our new friend, a photographer from France, for taking the photos of the audience for me!

The scene below, when the girls were no longer afraid of their new beastly friend “…and when he growled they laughed. But the bear took it all in good part, only when they were too rough he called out: ’Leave me alive, children, ’Snow-white, Rose-red, Will you beat your suitor dead?’”

“When spring had come, the bear said one morning to Snow-white: ’Now I must go away into the forest, and cannot come back for the whole summer.’ I must guard my treasures from the wicked dwarfs.'”

“Snow-white was quite sorry at his departure, and as she unbolted the door for him, and the bear was hurrying out, he caught against the bolt and a piece of his hairy coat was torn off, and it seemed to Snow-white as if she had seen gold shining through it, but she was not sure about it.”

Nunu performed Etude by Alexei Goedike to start off the next scene, as Anichka and I set up the woodland visage.
“When they came nearer they saw a dwarf with an old withered face and a snow-white beard a yard long. The end of the beard was caught in a crevice of the tree, and the little fellow was
jumping about like a dog tied to a rope, and did not know what to do.”
“Sometime afterwards Snow-white and Rose-red went to catch a dish of fish. As they came near the brook they saw something like a large grasshopper jumping towards the water, as if it were going to leap in. They ran to it and found it was the dwarf.”
111104 Gnome fishing a great big fish climatic drama 2

Anička performing Tanetz by Goedicke for the Fishing Hole scene.

Anichka playing Tanetz/Dance by Alexei Goedicke.

Anichka spoke for Rose Red ’Where are you going?’ said Rose-red; ’you surely don’t
want to go into the water?’
’I am not such a fool!’ cried the dwarf; ’don’t you see
that the accursed fish wants to pull me in?’

“The girls came just in time; they held him fast and tried to free his beard from the line, but all in vain, beard and line were entangled fast together.”

 

“As they crossed the heath again on their way home they surprised the dwarf, who had emptied out his bag of precious stones in a clean spot, and had not thought that anyone would come there so late. The evening sun shone upon the brilliant stones; they glittered and sparkled with all colors so beautifully that the children stood still and stared at them.”

111104 Snow White and her sister Rose Red stumbled upon a gnome roasting marshmellow in the woods
“Then in the dread of his heart he cried: ’Dear Mr Bear, spare me, I will give you all my treasures; look, the beautiful jewels lying there! Grant me my life; what do you want with such a slender little fellow as I? You would not feel me between your teeth. Come, take these two wicked girls, they are tender morsels for you, fat as young quails; for mercy’s sake eat them!’

 

“The girls had run away, but the bear called to them: ’Snow-white and Rose-red, do not be afraid; wait, I will come with you.’”
“Then they recognized his voice and waited, and when he came up to them suddenly his
bearskin fell off, and he stood there a handsome man, clothed all in gold.”

“I am a king’s son,’ he said, ’and I was bewitched by that wicked dwarf, who had stolen my treasures; I have had to run about the forest as a savage bear until I was freed by his death. Now he has got his well-deserved punishment.

“It was amusing for me to see that when I first brought out the “bearskin” (real rabbit fur pelt) for the prince, the children in the front row simply could not help themselves and instinctively reached out to touch the material. I secretly scooted it forward so the children could feel the “bear’s soft hide”.

My two very capable assistant puppeteers: 7 year old Nunu and 6 year old Anichka.

Snow White married the bear prince and Rose Red married her brother.

Snow White and Rose Red wedding scene. Handmade and homespun puppet theatre by CastleofCostaMesa.com

Nunu played Dmitri Shostakovich‘s jaunty “March” for the finale.

Finale wedding scene. The angel child in white came to the wedding too.

Being the crown prince, the wedding was a big affair. Everyone in the kingdom was invited. The couples, their widowed mother, their pet dove, the woodland animals, owls of the night, the fish in the pond and all the merfolk denizons beneath, even the angel child of the woods came to give her blessings.

Close up view of the finale.

Right after the puppet show, we invited the children to participate in the “Acorn Candle Boat” birthday wishes at the tub of water:

Pamela handmade the loveliest little acorn candle boats specially for the children! Click below to shop at her beautiful etsy.com store PrettyDreamer ! Remember to click lots of hearts and tell your friends about her store!

Acorn cap candles - woodland /the littlest lights/ floating candles

PrettyDreamer’s Store

Lighting “Acorn Birthday Wish Candle Boats”. Jadyn had requested Hannah to light her birthday acorn cap boat.

First, Nunu lit a candle and made a wish for her 7th birthday. Then, Jadyn lit a candle and made a wish for her 7th year. Afterwards, each birthday girl invited a friend to light a birthday acorn boat for her until each girl has 7 boats floating in the water. The wishes they received including multiple vacations, a new ballet leotard and of course, a pony for Jadyn! Then the mommies stirred the tub with sticks and the girls chased around and blew off the candles. Yes, we have earth (muddy shoes), wind, fire and water, the basic elements today. Check.

Boy, that was fun! After that, we sang Happy Birthday and ate the prettiest birthday cake before the children went out and played on the wet grass (for the thunderstorm had passed)

The two birthday girls handed out acorn candle boats for their guests.

The children were excited to go home and light the candles in little dishes of water at their candlelit dinners at home!acorn cap candles-- woodland /the littlest lights/ floating candles

PrettyDreamer

Click here to view guest photos.

Click on this picture below to see the process that was put into crafting this puppet show.

If you have read every morsel of my lovingly created Snow White and Rose Red of EPIC proportions, you should really follow my blog and check back on future puppet tales! At least please leave a comment below, so we can be friends!

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Gallery of Past Projects from The Waldorf School of Orange County Craft Group

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140321 6 Upside Down Surprise Flower Fairies from 2013 by Jzin Teng CastleofCostaMesa.Com. Clever ingenious upside down surprise doll.

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9 Comments Post a comment
  1. Julie Marovish #

    Jzin! This is fabulous! Beautifully creative. I’m amazed at the details and creativity… just sorry we missed it. Thanks for sharing!

    November 22, 2011
  2. oh dear Jzin … What a lovely story you have made! I can see that all the children loved the adventures of the rose red and snow white so very much… it is written on all their faces. :) … I cannot say in words how wonderful it is see how the children were caught in the quiet moments with the little acorn cap boats adrift. …thank you so much for sharing these moments with me… such a pleasure!! all my best, Pamela

    November 23, 2011
  3. Liz Wenger #

    Jzin.. this is beautiful, and stunningly crafted! I love all of your feeling and spirit in this story… and of course the children and their love and spirit! Georgeous! And quite a refreshing retreat!

    November 23, 2011
  4. Cat in Your Hat #

    Such a beautiful gift to the children…! Please come to the Journey School and perform for the children there–please??? I think that there may be a new career path there? Yes, Jzin the Jzinius Puppeteer, with her very own troup of handmade puppets! With love and admiration.

    November 23, 2011
  5. What a delightful show you’ve shared so beautifully here! So magical! I almost felt as if I were right there. -heather

    December 11, 2011
  6. Neli #

    Beautiful journey, dearest Jzin!!! I wish I were sitting among the children in the audience to witness the magic, share the joy and live the amazement of the live performance! You are constantly creating a wonderful world for young and young in heart and it is an enormous pleasure to get in touch with everything you do. Be blessed and be creative! Love you and your children, and your dearest family! Neli

    January 6, 2012
    • jzinius #

      Thank you Neli, for your inspiration (I love your puppet shows and songs!) and your constant support and encouragements! Children are such joys! It is a great priviledge to engage them.

      January 6, 2012
  7. It’s one of the most favourite fairy-tale of my daughters ans I admire your puppet-show! So beautiful dolls and so many very delicate and interesting details! You inspire me for my own puppet theater^)))) Pin it and shared with my friends:))) http://pinterest.com/pin/194499277629074549/

    January 27, 2013
  8. This is so enchanting :) I wish I could be there with my little one, it is so magical! So wonderful….girls made such a beautiful job as well! Ah…I cannot leave your page now, just going from post to post and reading – it is such a feast for my soul and my eyes!

    January 27, 2013

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