GRUMBLING GRYPHONS to offer Workshop and Performance at TheatreWorks

NEW MILFORD, CONN (January 17, 2020) - TheatreWorks New Milford TW Kids program presents Anansi- the Trickster Spider: A West African Folktale will be performed by Grumbling Gryphons Traveling Children's Theater on Saturday, February 29th, at TheatreWorks in New Milford, CT.  The performance, will be preceded by a special pre-performance drama, music, movement workshop at 9:00 a.m. prior to the public performance at 11:00 a.m.*

Leslie Elias, director of Grumbling Gryphons Traveling Children's Theater, adapted a popular West African folktale into this interactive show for children.  Audience participation is an essential ingredient in the telling of the story. The director, Leslie Elias is an experienced teacher as well as performer and will be conducting the pre-performance workshops in drama. Original mask patterns made by Ellen Moon will provide templates for children to make their own mask during a brief morning workshop in combination with engaging in drama, singing and dance. During the show, children wear the masks they made and take part by acting, singing, chanting and playing such roles as lions, crocodiles, lions, monkeys, bees and various jungle animals.

Two main actors of the Grumbling Gryphons portray a variety of lively characters. Daniel Saed plays the lead role of Anansi-The Trickster Spider the infamous trickster of the Ashanti People of West Africa. Daniel Saed, having grown up performing with Grumbling Gryphons is also a member of Town Hall Players in Cornwall, a member of Nutmeg Junction Radio in Torrington and plays the part of Max in the upcoming production of The Sound of Music at Housatonic Musical Theater Society at Housatonic Valley Regional High School where he is currently a senior.

Director, Leslie Elias, in addition to writing and directing, plays numerous roles in the production, including the comical characters of Crocodile, Monkey, Lion and Queen Bee. Ms. Elias from West Cornwall has served as Artistic Director of The Grumbling Gryphons for forty years.  She is the winner of the 2018 Connecticut Arts Hero Award as well as the 2018 Culture Max Award given by Northwest Connecticut Arts Council for Arts Educator.  Dale Adams, from Harwinton, CT is the musical director and keyboardist and has played with the company for many years. He accompanies the actors on the keyboards.

Anansi- the Trickster Spider is a well-known, comical character who originated in Western Africa.  The tale, "How Anansi Brought the Stories Down", tells how Anansi, with the aid of the children in the audience, tricks the various animals of the jungle and retrieves the stolen stories of the world from Nyame, the Sky God.

The theater company is renowned for its fantastic masks and captivating costumes, made by Ellen Moon of Cornwall, CT., and for its innovative interaction with children.   Grumbling Gryphons has been performing in schools, museums, libraries and festivals throughout the United States since 1980.  In recent years, they have performed at Bushnell Park in Hartford, CT; the American Museum of Natural History and Lincoln Center in N.Y.C; the Philadelphia Museum of Art; Miami Book Fair International; the Maine State Music Theater in Brunswick, Maine; the Stockton Children's Museum in California, and at various international festivals. In 2003 they won the Connecticut Governor’s Arts Award.  They are now celebrating 40 years of touring and teaching!

*Workshop - 9:00 a.m.
Performance - 11:00 a.m.
Instructor - Leslie Elias
Registration - $50.00 ($25.00 for sibling)  

(Each registration includes 4 free tickets to the performance at 11)
Performance tickets only - $10.00
Ticket sales open Feb 14th
Questions?  Call 860-350-6863


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